As summer gets closer, temperatures begin inching up - from the teens up to as high as 105F in Phoenix. Some things that have been stored out in the garage (instead of the car) have to come inside, or they will get cooked. I remembered I'd taken some boxes of jewelry projects out there when company was due and we needed the dining room table.
Well, since we are super casual here in the summer and have no dining room dinners planned, I think it’s safe to bring my projects (clutter?) back inside. Here is the box I rescued from the hot garage - it holds some of my precious metal clay supplies and tools, and today it's destined for the dining room table (a.k.a. My Bench)
Hmmmm, I wonder what else is hiding in the box? It almost feels like Christmas! Here's a bunch of silver charms that I made last Fall and subsequently "lost"!
It seems some of the pieces are unfired, and some have been fired & polished but are covered with tarnish and need cleaning - guess who forgot to put a tarnish strip in the zip lock bag?!
I also find a group of silver pieces that I've already fired in the kiln, but haven’t finished polishing. Yippee, I'd forgotten about these! It’s wonderful to find them because most of my design work was done a while ago – as the pieces have already been shaped, sanded and smoothed, then fired in my kiln, they are almost ready to go into my jewelry designs.
Well, let’s polish them up in the tumbler and see how they look. Tumbling fine silver (.999 silver) will make the pieces super strong and give them a shiny finish, so into the tumbler they go with the stainless steel shot.
So, now I simply add filtered water and a drop of Dawn liquid detergent, and plug it in. . .
Hours later I open the lid and pick through the shot to find all the polished charms. After giving them a good rinse they look like this. . . ooooh shiny!
Some of the charms will look beautiful left with this shiny finish, but some will get a bath in warm water plus a few drops of Liver of Sulphur Gel to give them a dark patina in the crevices of the designs. Then I will hand polish those, removing the dark patina from some areas of the design. Here is a pair of earring dangles after the patina treatment, in the clear water rinse. Pretty Dark!
After I've used a silver jewelry cloth to polish away most of the dark patina from the silver dangles I’ll be ready to make them into earrings. I think these will look nice with labradorite gemstones, and here they are - my finished earrings!
Thank you for sharing your week with us, Phylly!