Thursday, 13 May 2010

Silversmithing Course

I've just got back from my 3rd lesson on my silversmithing course, and thought I'd share what I've been doing and learning! Unfortunately I wasn't clever enough to take any photos after the first week, but have pictures from the 2nd week.

Basically I am making a domed silver pendant, with a shape cut out. The first week all I did was cut out my circle, using a saw.. the rest of the lesson was about health and safety etc!

The 2nd week I cut my star shape out of the silver, filed it, domed it, and drilled a hole. Much more productive!

This is how it looked at the end of the 2nd week!

Then tonight was all about soldering. First I roughly cut the shape of the back. Then I put various chemicals on the 2 pieces of silver, and arranged my pieces of solder. Then we got out the blow torches! Given how accident prone I am, if anyone there really knew me they probably shouldn't have let me use one (just this morning I managed to staple my thumb!), but I did use one, and had no major dramas! So I managed to solder my 2 pieces together without causing any catastrophes, which is pretty impressive! Then after it spent half an hour in the pickle (to clean it) I sawed and filed the back piece to meet the front, and then drilled a hole through for the jump ring.

It needs a lot of polishing still, but you can see it now has a back!

While it was in the pickle I had a play with balling some wire, which was fun! Basically you hold the wire vertically in some tweezers, and torch the bottom of it, and when it's hot enough it sort of melts upwards, forming a ball on the end of the wire! I'm not using it in my final design, but lots of the other ladies on my course are, and I thought I might as well have a go.. it was quite exciting!

So hopefully next week I'll finish my pendant, get it all polished up and onto a chain, and then onto something new!


  1. This looks like a great course, I do a lot of beading but more and more I think I would like to learn more about metal working,especially to make findings.
    That pendant looks fantastic, can't wait to see the finished piece.

  2. I am so jealous! I really want to do a silversmithing course - when I have the money to I plan to do one!! Your pendant is looking lovely. :)