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Showing posts from 2020

Virtual Kingdom A&S 2020: Chalcedony/Striking Glass

Virtual Kingdom A&S 2020: Chalcedony/Striking Glass

After my last project which was focused on just successfully making a glass, I began trying to refine my batch composition to eliminate lead so I would be comfortable using it in projects that do not stay with me. Shortly after accomplishing this, I got distracted by the range of effects that can be produced by including silver in glass. One effect I focused on is called striking, which is where the glass shifts through a rainbow of colors when reheated. I approached this under the impression that striking glass was a more recent creation, but in the middle of the project, I came across extant pieces with similar coloration that were referred to as chalcedony glass. I eventually found a recipe dated to 1443 for this glass, and it did include striking as the last step of the process. This recipe, however, called for mercury and lead in its components. I had just managed to get lead out of my batch, and I was definitely not going to introduce mercury, so this project focused more on comp

Queen's Prize 2020: Glassmaking, From Beach to Bead

For my entry into Calontir's 2020 Queen's Prize competition, I tried making my own glass. This entry won the Judge's Choice vote. When I use glass in a jewelry or lampworking project, it comes in the form of preground enamel or glass rods. I tried taking a step further down the supply chain and making my own based on Theophilus' instructions, although I wound up modifying that glass so it could melt in my kiln and branching out to try other period compositions with modern materials. Instead of trying to convert my documentation into a blog entry this time, I'm just going to directly embed the documentation I submitted with the entry, slightly edited to include reference photos that would have been part of my display.

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Making Metal Purple: Enamel and Patinas

One problem I ran into with my award medallion project is how to make metal purple. Because Calontir likes purple. A lot. After digging around, I came up with four possible plans: Enamel Patina Dye-oxide Dyed epoxy Enamel This was my first choice, as it both looks pretty and fits into the time period of the SCA. After some modifications to my soldering station and a promising test on scrap copper, I took one of my newly cast Golden Swan medallions and went to work. A layer of enamel was applied and things looked good. The medallion was set aside to cool. While I was cleaning up other parts of the shop, I started hearing a faint little "Ting! Ting!" coming from the soldering tray. All of the beautiful enamel was popping off! Which lead to the first lesson from this project: coefficient of thermal expansion. I broke off some of the surviving enamel to be able to test other things, like some purple paste wax in the upper right. But you get the idea with the broke

Konstantia's Coronet

At Fall Crown Tourney, Konstantia was made a baron of TRM Damien and Issabell's court. I had the pleasure of making her coronet. I also managed to not spend the last three months with my fingers steepled while cackling maniacally. Design There was a moment of worry at the start of this because I said I would be interested in doing a coronet before I knew who it was for. When I heard it was for Konstantia, I knew that meant Byzantine. Which means bling. Lots of bling. I had actually made a comment to Jakob before about Byzantine style looking like a pain to make because of the amount of bling. But, it was a good challenge. My initial research into styling for a Byzantine coronet turned up two basic design concepts I worked off of (citation needed, since it appears I didn't save these sources): Stones were more important than the gold. The Byzantine empire was full of gold mines, while precious stones were imported. So, the focus was on the stonework while the metal i

Fox Masquerade Mask

I've had the idea of making a metal fox mask for a few years now, but haven't really had a reason to do it until this year. Work decided our holiday party would be a murder mystery masquerade, which makes a great excuse. The basis for the mask was Wintercroft's Fox Half Mask . The half mask is perfect for the masquerade use, and I thought the papercraft/low poly look would translate well to the metal. I took the mask template and glued it to 22 gauge copper sheet with spray adhesive. Then after about an hour of work with a jeweler's saw... I had the pieces, somewhat resembling a fox mask, but mostly a Batman logo. The paper templates were attached to the other side, so I could use the dotted lines for initial bends. These were mostly done on the corner of an anvil or over a piece of 1"x4" clamped in a bench vice. A rubber mallet was used instead of a metal hammer, since the rubber won't leave indentions in the surface where the hammer str