Sunday, February 10, 2013

Inspired by Metal Stamping

Anodized Aluminum Pendant
"Keep Calm . Carry On"

My latest endeavor is creating jewelry with handstamped sentiments. This hot trend in jewelry parallels our desire to embrace our individuality and memories. I've seen thousands of beautiful pieces on Etsy, where I have my new shop, Stampologie by Lisa Miwa and Susan Morishita.

I researched metal stamping before embarking on this new endeavor, reviewing many videos on technique, looking at various artists and their styles. This information was very helpful, but no amount of studying can replace the act of doing. Now I know this looks pretty easy, right? Well, there is a technique to stamping. 

Some of the things I had to learn include:

1) How hard do I stamp the metal? Well, it depends on the hardness and thickness of the metal. Practicing on aluminum is different that stamping on nickel silver which is very hard.

2) How do I space the letters? Each font style is different so adjustments in spacing need to be considered. And, what can I say except that practice makes perfect? For each blank I stamp, I practice first before stamping on the final product. And, sometimes that isn't enough.

3) Lastly, working with aluminum is an adjustment for me. I use separate tools for aluminum so my sterling silver work is not contaminated. And, because I am very finicky about the final finish of my pieces, it took me a while to understand the properties of aluminum. Now, I have to confess, I really like it. It's bright like silver and very easy to care for because it doesn't tarnish. Aluminum is also very lightweight, so you won't feel the weight of a large pendant.

This piece "Keep Calm . Carry On" reminds me to stay focused on my creative journey by putting one foot in front of the other.

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