This is a guest project designed by Carol Merkl. Carol runs the Coventry PMC Studio Accredited Training Centre where she offers a wide range of courses including PMC Certification. The article is part of our jewellery making projects collection and it is a step-by-step guide on how to make floral earrings using silver clay.
What you need:
- PMC3 6.3g silver
- Rose and calyx cutter
- Teflon or work mat
- Spacer and roller set
- Badger balm
- Rubber texture mat
- Plastic measuring spoon
- Paintbrush and cup of water
- Hand drill
- Earring wires
- Rubber block
- Stainless steel brush
- Burnisher or tumbler polisher
- Torch and block to fire or Kiln
Step 1 – Texture
Rub some badger balm on your hands, roller and on the rubber texture mat. Remove the clay from the pack and place on a piece of Teflon or work mat. Place a spacer either side of the clay and use the roller to roll the clay. Press the rubber texture mat into the clay.
Step 2 – Shape
Use the calyx cutter to cut a flower shape. (Put any left-over clay back into the pack to keep it fresh.) Smooth the edges using a damp paintbrush. Rub some badger balm on the inside of a plastic measuring spoon and use a damp paintbrush to position the flower in the centre of the measuring spoon. Leave to dry. Repeat step 2 to make the second flower.
Step 3 – Hole
Gently sand the edges of the flower using the sandpaper. Place the flowers on the rubber block and use a hand drill to drill a hole in the centre. Make the hole about 10 per cent larger to allow for the shrinkage of the clay during firing.
Fire the earrings using a butane gas torch (they should glow a pale, orange colour for at least 2 minutes) or fire in a kiln at 600C for 10 minutes.
Tip: you may wish to use some kiln pillow to support the flowers during firing. Once fired, quench in a cup of water and dry.
Step 4 – Polish and finish
Place on a rubber block and polish using a stainless steel brush. Continue using a burnisher or place in a tumbler to achieve a high shine finish. To complete your earrings use a pair of pliers to attach the earring wires.
For details about Carol Merkl please visit www.1offstudio.com.
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