Sunday, March 25, 2012

Metalsmithing Class Part VI

Last Thursday was a weird day for me. That morning, I was laid off from my job. Also, it was about 80 degrees out in March in New York City. Still, instead of just going home and enjoying this freakishly beautiful weather, I stayed in the city and went to my metalsmithing class that night.

During the day, I stayed in my husband's office and turned his conference room into a studio. I had all of my jewelry making equipment with me so I spent the afternoon carving shapes out of 20 gauge copper sheet metal. This gave me a chance to practice my sawing techniques.

I'm getting better at sawing metal, though it's still time-consuming. The diamond I made took me about an hour to cut, but sawing out a heart was much more of a challenge. I had to get that inner curve and the dip at the top of the shape, and that took a lot of work -- but I got it!

Since I didn't have a drill on hand, I improvised and used my center punch tool to create a little hole at the top of each shape (to string a chain or jumpring). The metal warped a bit from this, but I plan to hammer the cut-outs, anyway. I think I'll then wrap some silver wire aound them.

That night at class I did .... more sawing. This time, I sawed my cicular pendant. I sawed and sawed and I'm still only about 3/4 of the way done! And I still have to saw the inside. I guess I have the time to do some work at home now.

Our teacher showed us how to put a stone into a bezel setting and how to use a buffing machine. Working with the bezel seems a little complicated so I hope I don't mess up that part. The buffing machine is just scary; it's like a mini car wash for jewelry.

Our semester is more than half over so I really hope I can finish my pendant in time. Our last class is May 17 and I have a craft fair on the 19th. I'd love to have it ready for sale by then.

To purchase my jewelry, head to NAOMI'S DESIGNS.

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