Married Metal – Free Project

Before we get to the project, I’d like to invite you to join a new Facebook Group called “Hadar’s Clay Support Forum.” This is an open group, established and administrated by Hadar’s Clay accredited teachers. If you are a user of my clay, this is the place for you to discuss, consult, raise issues and share. You will meet the most knowledgeable and generous people. If you want to sign up for the third accreditation round, please contact me via email.

Second, I’ve cut back on my travels by a lot this year, but I do have 3 workshops scheduled, on the topic of “Constructing a Scene” with the new clays. This workshop is about perspective, low relief, and reverse construction. Please contact Metal Clay Alchemist for workshops in Toronto and Victoria, Canada, and Studio 34 Creative Arts Center & Galleryfor a workshop in Rochester, NY.

Now to married metal.

For those of you who are new to the jewelry profession terminology, “married metals” means one continuous surface of metal composed of different metals, as opposed to a segmented surface, where there is a space separating one metal from another. The pieces in the photos below have a similar pattern, but in the first the metals are are actually touching each other, while in the second they separated from each other by an empty space.

Married metal

Not married metals

Note that the transition from one color to the next is not gradient. It is abrupt, but seamless.

The following is a project – with two variations – for married metal earrings in metal clay.

Tropicana

Married Metals in Friendly Copper and White Satin

Materials: Friendly Copper, White Satin.

1. Roll a layer of Friendly Copper, 8 cards thick.
8 cards thick

2. Roll a layer of White Satin, 4 cards thick.

4 cards thick

3. Cut two small circles out of the White Satin layer.
Cut out circles

4. Place the circles on the Friendly Copper layer with a good distance between them.

Circles on layer

5. Oil a glass or acrylic board, and press down on the circles until they are flush with the copper layer. Remove the board. Don’t do this step by rolling the layers flush with a rolling pin; this will make the circles oval.

Press down

6. Cut the copper layer in half.
Cut layer in half

7. Press each half, face down, into a texturing mold.
Place in mold

8. Cut a circle out of each layer.

Cut a circle

9. Dry the circles and drill a hole in each one for the ear wire.

10. Fire the earrings for 2 hours at 1730°F-1750°F (brick kiln); 1780°F-1800°F (muffle kiln). Finish the earrings following the instructions in the document entitled “Finishing Fired Metal Clay” (also linked in the right panel of this blog).

Variations

Two-tone Pendant

Friendly Copper and White Satin

Two-tone Pendant

1. Arrange 2 strips of Friendly Copper on each side of a White Satin strip – all 8 cards thick.
Arrange strips

2. Lay them as one layer over a texturing mold. The one I chose is “Wires 4“.

Lay over mold

3. Press the strips against the mold and against each other at the same time. They should stick together.

Press

4. Remove the clay layer and turn it over to examine your results.

Remove, turn over

5. Cut the layer to the desired shape. Roll a layer of Friendly Copper, 4 cards thick, and lay the cut layer on top of it.

6. Cut the copper backing layer to the shape and size of the top layer.
Cut layer

7. Dry. Seal the gaps between the layers with Friendly copper. Dry again, and add a bail on the back of the piece.

8. Fire the earrings for 2 hours at 1730°F-1750°F (brick kiln); 1780°F-1800°F (muffle kiln).

Two-tone earrings

Two-tone earrings

Earrings

These earrings can be made with two combinations: Friendly Copper and Friendly Bronze (not released yet); Friendly Copper and Champagne/Dark Champagne Bronze.

1. Make 2 snakes out of bronze and 2 out of copper. Arrange them in the mold next to each other in an alternating way. The mold used here is Wood Grain 2.

Arrange snakes

2. Press the snakes into the mold and against each other.

Press

3. Release the layer from the mold and turn it over.

Release, turn over

4. Follow the rest of the steps in the first variation.

5. If you used Friendly Bronze, fire 2 hours at 1510°F (brick); 1560°F (muffle). If you used Champagne/Dark Champagne fire at 1750°F (brick); 1800°F(muffle).


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