Conquered…Sort Of

by Suzanne on June 22, 2011

I’ve had it in my head for years that I want to master a tap and die connection. Why? Well, when I was a student I had a go and I completely screwed it up. Pardon the pun!

I made a brooch for a lovely lady Deborah Drearley, who’s having a hard time fighting battles to save some beautiful coastal Moonahs. She loves the brooch but was wondering if I could cap it somehow so it wouldn’t catch on cloth. The perfect opportunity to take out the tap and die set. I am convinced the best way to learn is to have a problem to solve. This is a one off mind you, I’m sure there are simpler solutions, like a rubber tip perhaps. It was a bit like fitting pieces of a puzzle together; where does this bit go, and what do I do with it? I think I figured it out, or at least I was confident I had when I produced a silver screw. The female/tube, however was tiny and I thought it would just be too fiddly.

Given the brooch is a cast Moonah seed pod I thought I could use the same idea of a single pod that I had used for Tara’s ring. This, I have to confess was after an unsuccessful attempt to add a silver ball to the end of the tube. I must have been delusional to think a pod would be any easier to attach but the solder took on the first try. Now if I could only conquer Mandarin and piano! As far as jewellery goes, I’m looking at these Moonah pods and thinking they have a natural bezel, am I crazy? Would it be possible to mount a stone? I also have a box of enamels which I must have used at some stage but can’t remember how. I never had a kiln. There is a tiny bottle of lavender oil in with the colours. So now I’m on the hunt for a good tutorial on torch or cold enamelling, if such a thing exists.


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Cat Williams July 12, 2011 at 2:47 am

Artist & teacher Barbara Lewis has excellent tutorials on torch fired enameling. She also has a brand new book out on the subject.

There isn’t a way to do enameling “cold” because you are melting glass, but you could try working with resin instead. Good luck!


Suzanne July 12, 2011 at 3:26 am

Thanks for the advice. I would like to introduce colour one way or another. The Painting With Fire blogspot is excellent!


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