I love the process of keum-boo; fusing specially thinck 24 carat gold leaf to fine (pure) silver gives a real sense of luxury, without the price of using lots of gold.
It's a pretty durable and exciting process; and this, as with all my oxidised and patinated or keum-boo pieces has a protective layer of Renaissance Wax over it, which protects the finish further.
This is a 24mm round that I sawed from from 0.5mm fine silver sheet, before applying the gold (cut using a paper punch). I then domed the rounds, and spent some time filing and sanding the edges so that I could give them the impression of this lovely delicate frame. Finally I used some sterling wire to make a hidden, horseshoe bail at the back, through which you will be able to pass a chain or thong, to hang the pendant with the illusion of it floating.
Dimensions - Round; 24mm discs domed to 22mm diameter; hanging 21-22mm (approximately) from your chosen necklace. I was asked to make one to match the earrings I have listed and this in turn means that the design of the gold is interchangeable, and can be made to order - please allow me two to three working days to do so, and of course I can also make them without any patination. I just like these with the antiqued finish.
Currently I have one of these round hearts* only ready for instant dispatch - as mentioned above, the other designs will be made to order.
*The one I have instantly available is oxidised front and back, as shown in the photo. If you would like me to remove the patination on the reverse, or on all of it, just tell me so when placing your order, and I shall 'make it so' instantly :-)
If you are interested in the process, I have lots of photos on my Wordpress blog, and a couple of videos over on Youtube
The process for the pendants and earrings is similar for both; I punch or saw out the body of the piece from fine (999) silver ); file and sand the edges so they are smooth and then dome them. The discs are domed using a special block and die; the ovals are curved and hammered round the shaft of the die.
I then switch on my Ultralite kiln (known as Mr Tumnus) and whilst he reaches the correct temperature I cut the shapes from my prepared gold. I prepare the gold leaf by placing it between two pieces of tracing paper to cut out the shapes. Using a damp paint brush I position the gold on the silver (holding my breath so it doesn't blow away) and then, I place the piece of silver on a brass disc on top of the kiln. I use agate burnishes to tap on the gold and when it connects with the heated silver, it fuses at a molecular level. I keep tap-tapping away to ensure that it is fully fused, and then rub it all over with one of the burnishers, finally quenching it.
Once I'm happy that the gold is fully attached, I make the holes / solder any bail on and then I pickle them so that I can control the oxidisation / patination. They get a brief spin in my barrel polisher and then I apply the patinas using Liver Of Sulphur.
I will then polish some of this away (mostly on the edges and the reverse) and finally I'll apply a little of the Renaissance Wax to seal it.
Notes: I only use natural light and take all pictures in my home, so I have used a variety of backgrounds to help display the colouration and avoid your disappointment. The coins included for scale in the photo are a UK penny and a USA 1 dime
Keum-Boo Heart Pendant
Sterling Silver will eventually oxidise or tarnish. It's a natural process that can be slowed down by regular wear and by keeping unworn items away from the atmosphere. If you leave your jewellery out on display, this oxidisation will be faster. You can polish up your items, with a soft cloth, some silver polish, or a buffing cloth such as Town Talk, which is readily available from any high street jewellers in the UK
Fine silver is 99.9% silver, and because of this the tarnish rate is much, much slower. Again, a buff should do the job for polishing it back up. If I have patinated your silver already, be gentle when buffing!
Each piece should stand up to regular wear, but , as with all jewellery, please remove it before washing, using chemicals or applying perfume etc
Apply body lotion and perfume a few minutes before putting on your jewellery to help slow down tarnish
The sterling silver used in these items was sold to me by my bullion dealer ass certified recycled.
he gemstones I use have been sold to me by reputable dealers as untreated (unless stated specifically in the listing). They are a natural, organic creation from the earth and each one will be slightly different. You can see examples of this on my Facebook page.
I select the stones that I think go together best for each project, hence my comments that each item is individual.