A chronicle of the meanderings, false starts (which in retrospect, while sort of embarrassing turned out to be highly instructive), epiphanies, selective apathy (still evolving), wild mood swings, opinions (subject to frequent change), and life lessons of an inveterate dabbler (and her latest dabblings).

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Interim Rivet Report

My recently riveted and stamped items have had their sulfur bath and been tumbled for hours and hours. They didn't get as glossy as they usually do (WTH?) so I burnished them by hand with my new burnishing tool.

Looks wicked, doesn't it? Like a dental pick for Clydesdales.

Here is my pendant focal rivet project antiqued and ready to be tarted up:

I decided to lay a piece of 18 gauge wire in the little channel I made instead of leaving it. I wanted the back to look better so I balled the ends and hammered them before squeezing it tight on there. The wire was really soft from heating so it really clamped on there nicely. It sort of looks like a hinge to me on the front. Or some piping on a duvet cover. And now I will agonize, probably for days, over what to do with it. It will hang from three heavy gauge jump rings, and I might hang something from each one as well. Or just the middle one. Then decisions will have to be made about what to hang from the bottom. That will cause me sleepless nights. I'll have to take a pill. And then of course how to do the necklace portion. Knotting? Stringing? Wire links? Chain? Things will be assembled and disassembled. There may be weeping. It must be Triple Extra Special.

The flowers, destined for necklaces and bracelets, and the ping pong paddles for earrings:

And then my little earring bars and rings:
There will be more agonizing with these, of course. Except for the textured flower and strip above because I already know what I'm going to do with that. Of course, it might not work in which case there will be agonizing.

My boyfriend is off hunting antelope this weekend so I am a bachelorette.  This means 80s music on the stereo (New Order and Simple Minds, over and over and over and over and over again), no leg shaving, probably no bathing until tomorrow (pesky day job, they expect a certain level of hygiene), unrestrained ADD-like behavior (I'm sawing a board while I'm cooking eggs except for when I take a break to look up "gulag" in the dictionary because now that I think about it I'm not really sure what it means), tools and copper tacks in the middle of the floor (which will probably later lead to cussing), and sleeping with my 27-year-old college teddy bear (yes I'm that old). You thought I was going to say college boy, didn't you? Although that would be kind of old for a college boy. Graduate student then. Doctoral candidate.  In something interesting but economically useless like sociology. There's probably not that many of those around here since we have no university. I think I prefer my antelope hunter anyway. I don't think I could really be with someone who wears socks with sandals or has a beard. I hate beards.


  1. Your components are awesome! I can't imagine what you will create with them, but I know for sure it will be amazing as all of your work is.
    I just spent a week alone while my hubby was traveling for work and I do the same as you! Sometimes bathing is over rated....lol.

  2. If it is causing you that much stress I insist you take a nice big swig of something alcoholic and just send the whole lot to me - I'd love to help you !

  3. You, my friend, are creating the most fun, gorgeous stuff lately! Love your copper components...can't wait to see what they will be in the end. I love the 80's too :)

  4. aaah yes, the more holes, the more decisions... but just let go and go with the flow! enjoy the music and the recklessness... the components are extra special...

  5. What lovely pieces you are working on...and isn't the stress half the fun? Okay, so maybe not so much, upon second thought ;) Yeah, I'm with you...New Order, Simple Minds, and no socks with sandals. I've had the nerdy boys, give me a hunter, please. Atleast we won't starve ;)

  6. I love the way your mind works, Miss Keirsten! You suck me in with riveting and hammering copper (so pretty! I want those earring bars!) and then you spit me back out into the world humming 'Don't You Forget About Me' and getting the willies about how uncomfortable it must be to have on socks with flip flops, as that is the sort of sandal that I see for the grad student in sociology or African Storytelling or the like. Or is it Birkenstocks? (Double shudder). Hell to the yes for antelope hunters. If there were such beasts in Wisconsin I am sure that I would have a hunter doing his thing right about now too.

    Enjoy the day!

  7. Your components look great, can't wait to see what you do.

  8. gorgeous components, love the top one, enjoy your agonising!

  9. Very inspiring! Easy to spring board a design off of these. Thank you for sharing.

  10. I'd love to know how you stamp your metal, it is gorgeous, can you share?

    1. Hi Cricket! Thanks for the kind words! This post has some basics: http://cerebraldilettante.blogspot.com/2012/03/power-of-money.html I also use the same process with commercial brass textures sheets, and texture sheets I etch myself from nickel. You can use virtually anything as a texture plate, especially with annealed copper (which is very soft), even burlap or lace if you want (you get a more murky, vague kind of texture with softer stuff like that, but still kind of interesting). There is more information about the whole process (and some great projects) in Interweave's "Wire + Metal: 30 Easy Metalsmithing Designs." If you click on the thumbnail image for the book on my right sidebar, it will take you right to it at Interweave's store. Happy hammering!