Making Jewelry Stinks (sometimes)

20 Jul

It does, this idea does stink but, with artful results.

Today’s Club Creative Studio post is a special feature post that deals with a great idea that stems from what might seem as an unlikely place in jewelry-making, it is the location called your kitchen.   I love to discover a technique that is interesting and this one is so worth sharing.

Although we love for things to come out of our kitchen smelling wonderful, this is a kitchen/jewelry project that really stinks!  Consider yourself warned AND informed.  In this case, what stinks is also pretty cool.  If you are making jewelry and enjoy experimenting, this is something that you may be interested in trying, or at least it is nice to know.

People called “Foodies” are great fans of food.  If you are one that spends many hours in the kitchen creatively cooking, baking or eating, then you know how important that environment can be.  It can be a space of much discovery. And so today, you can combine the kitchen, food and jewelry making all in one project.

How could this be that all of those things can combine in an artful way?  Let me share a tip I came across that is helpful for those who like to experiment and find options to incorporate in their creative jewelry creations. Don’t be chicken (like me) try it and let me know about your results.  It’s and Egg-cellent idea. 

Did you know that you can use a hard-boiled egg to create the look of patina on sterling silver wire findings? You’ll need a hard-boiled egg, sterling silver item, a zip-seal plastic bag. Here is what you do for the process:  After hard boiling your eggs while they are still hot, take your peeled hard-boiled eggs and slice them in half, placing in the air-tight bag.

The yolk is the primary source of sulfur and it is the yolk that will be reacting chemically to the sterling silver item you place in a bag.  For an average-sized single piece of jewelry, two eggs will be enough, but the larger the item, the more eggs you need. To oxidize multiple pieces of jewelry, you will need to add more eggs, and use a larger bag as well.

The aim of this project is to turn sterling silver items into items with an aged and patina-look.

Waiting for the oxidation process is next, the silver will bond with oxygen.  Leave the contents in the closed zipped bag for a few days, when it oxidizes, you’ll want to brush your item with fine steel wool.  Polishing with a soft cloth afterwards will complete your project.  You hope to come out of this with a nice aged-look on your item. The longer you leave it in the bag, the darker your patina will be. Make sure to discard your eggs when done, do not consume them.

The alternative to this method in the kitchen is of course using Liver of sulfur (which actually smells the same) but, this is a natural way to avoid that chemical.

I look forward to trying this technique as I become a bit more brave with rotting egg smell.  However, if it works, in the end it doesn’t stink after all.

Do not eat the eggs after you have completed this project.

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2 Responses to “Making Jewelry Stinks (sometimes)”

  1. clubcreativestudio July 23, 2012 at 12:13 PM #

    This method is an option to waiting around for the tarnish, patina or natural-aged look to occur naturally. Too bad liver of sulfur and eggs smell terrible, or the process will be more enjoyable to endure. While some perfer the shine and bling of silver, I also can appreciate the darker tones rendered from an aged piece. It gives character and detail.

  2. Cash for Gold Albuquerque July 20, 2012 at 8:22 PM #

    Turning silver into an aged look is really great.

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