Monday, April 23, 2012

Metalwork Monday: Lace-etched bangle bracelet

I have an admission to make. I have an addiction to vintage sewing supplies--kitschy fabrics, retro trims, and most of all; lace. My lace collection is embarrassingly large. My favorites are hand-crocheted or tatted, but I also have two boxes full of bolts of lace, both old and new.

Hence, lace week. 

Metal etching is the trend of the moment in Funky Monkey Studio and I have just learned to print with lace (check back tomorrow for that tutorial), so I combined them into a great new design. So exciting!

Lace-etched copper plaques riveted onto a bangle with a
lace overlay.

Using block-printing ink, a brayer, and a piece of lace, I applied a
resist to the plaques. I etched more pieces than I thought I
would use so I could choose the best etchings. Before I printed the copper,'
I mounted them to the sticky side of packing tape to prepare them
for the acid bath. More details on lace/ink printing in tomorrow's post.

The plaques spent 30 minutes in the ferric chloride bath.
I use recycled take-out container for the bath. The tape on the edges
of the bowl suspends the metal just barely in the acid.

After coming out of the bath and having a quick rinse, you can see the
lace pattern. I polished the pieces, used the Dremel to round the corners,
and oxidized them in liver of sulfur.

Using my French Shears, I cut the bangle blank. I used the
Dremel to round the corners and texture the piece.
I used the sanding block to smooth the edges.

I added a piece of lace over the bangle blank and used my
riveting/eyelet tool to attach it. I then added the
copper plaques and attached them with copper rivets.
The lace is attached with four brass eyelets.
Before forming the curve, I stained the lace with strong tea
brushed over it with a flux brush. I did four coats of tea to
get the shade I wanted.

Formed and ready to wear. I used both the bracelet mandrel
and the bracelet-bending pliers to achieve the  finished
fit and look.

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