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A Labradorite Pendant, Copper And Prehnite and Enamel Earrings

This is the pendant I made as a commission recently. It was a slightly different request from the custom work I've done before in that the buyer wanted me to use one of her own cabochons. She also wanted the pendant with a shiny silver finish.
If you read this blog regularly you'll know that I don't normally do shiny. One reason is just that I prefer the oxidized look especially with patterned silver. The other reason is getting a smooth shiny finish on plain silver is difficult!  When the piece features a textured silver top layer and quite a few balls it's even more difficult to get a good polish on it. Getting into the crevices even with radial polishers was tricky as they caught the edge of the top textured layer and would have worn the pattern away if I hadn't stopped. But, after a lot of finishing work I did get a decent finish on it and I'm happy to say the buyer was very happy with it and it arrived in time for her birthday which was nice :D

I felt the urge for some enamelling yesterday and produced these....

The pair in the middle were a bit of an experiment as the pink transparent I'd sifted over a decal came out cloudy. I was very tempted to chuck them in the bin but thought I'd try something else. The earrings started out with two layers of purple opaque then the decal then the transparent pink. I then sifted a layer of green opaque over the transparent and over-fired them so the transparent started pushing through the green layer. It came through as a rich red colour and produced small dots {and one bigger one!} giving the earrings an almost ceramic glaze look.

I also did a bit of sgraffito on the bottom pair then etched the enamel to give them a matt finish.

The etching cream applied thickly for 15 minutes before washing off and applying to the back.
I also use a glass brush to clean the surface once I've rinsed them.

The finished matt surface. The texture is very smooth and feels like eggshell. I recommend trying etching cream on enamel as it really is so easy to do. I bought my etching cream from MDP Supplies.

The finished earrings...

I also finished a pair of copper earrings too. I used some sweet prehnite rose cut cabochons as I love their pale green colour with the oxidized copper..

I'm currently on a mission to make several thicker gauge silver bangles that will need hallmarking. I've been a bit reluctant to make heavier silver stuff as hallmarking seemed so expensive and a bit scary {yes I know I'm being silly} but after being reassured by a fellow jewellery maker {thanks Claire!} I've decided to go for it. I'm already registered with the London Assay Office so it will be full steam ahead very shortly.

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  1. Beautiful work. I love the custom order you did. So shiny! The enameled pieces are gorgeous as always. I look forward to seeing some hallmarked pieces. That is very exciting!

  2. I love how summery your enamelled earrings look. The blue green one reminds me of striped beach shorts - very quirky!

  3. I love all you made! Wonderfull!!!!!!!!

  4. These are lovely :) And that must be the first time I heard about etching enamel - though logically it's not really surprising, glass gets etched all the time. How did I manage to miss that? And I just love those copper earrings.

  5. Your custom piece turned out fab! Every time I see your enamelled work, it makes me want to do it too.

    1. Thanks Em! Everytime I do some enamelling I remember how much the colour brightens everything up and always want to do lots more :D

  6. I love the colours! The earrings are both simple yet have a certain complexity to them both in details and color. LOVELY!
    The sweet prehnite's pale green colour with the oxidized copper..... a Mid Western delight! :-)


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