Wednesday, January 9, 2013

BAW 52/1

Well, I've done it again. I'm starting out the New Year intending to make a piece of jewelry a week and post it in a Flickr group. This time the Etsy Metal team has invented the Brooch a Week challenge. There are even some dedicated artists who are making a Brooch a Day! Now that's a challenge.

I mean to post my creations here every Monday. I was feeling a little under the weather this week, so I'm late. Oh well. Such is life.

I began with high hopes of a fabricated stick pin using elements I already had in my studio. I bought the fun ceramic eye bead years ago on Etsy, and wanted to make my own Victorian lover's eye brooch. The bezel was cut, fitted, and soldered uneventfully - but when it came to soldering the the bezel to the backing... well, you can see what happened. For many reasons that I won't go into. Let's just say it was operator error and move on, shall we?

After deciding to put it aside for another day - my eye fell on a textured piece of Creative Paper Clay that I made almost exactly a year ago in the studio of Miss Lorena Angulo. Ah! Perfection. I added some glass seed beads, embellished with oil pastels, forged a simple fibula pin, and sewed it all together with silk cord. And I love it!

Shot with my iPhone on black foam.
Not the best surface.

Tips for making a fibula pin:
1. Watch a YouTube video to refresh your memory
2. Forge the wire to thin and lengthen it (something I hadn't done in the past)
3. File the hammer marks with a bastard from the hardware store (no, not the salesman)
4. File the file marks with a needle file
5. Sand the needle file marks with sandpaper
6. Hammer the other end into a paddle shape to act as the catch
7. Bend to fit
8. Polish

This is the nicest pin stem I have ever sharpened. The others started with wire, followed by lots of filing and swearing. It's the forging first that's the secret! Finished it in about 5 minutes.

I have no idea what I'll do next week, but I'm looking forward to it. Wouldn't you love to join me?


Anonymous said...


Donna Penoyer said...

You know what? I've never forged the pin stem before filing, either. Good idea! I'm going to try that. You may have just changed my life. : ) (I'll get back to you on that.)