Monday, 14 December 2009

Playing with my Vintaj blanks

I'm a lucky girl -- not so long ago I won my third giveaway from Vintaj's blog. This time I got a lovely mix of brass blanks, a whole 27 pieces (their Altered Blanks Sampler Pack). I love blanks so getting these was great!

Best thing about getting these for free is that I don't have to worry about money. Otherwise I tend to be a bit cautious as I'm afraid to ruin expensive materials. And because of the price I normally just buy one or two of each item so there isn't much room for experimentation. Now I got enough not to feel anxious about screwing up. You can't succeed every time, but the not so successful trials are important too. So daring to fail is very much a part of success.

My first odd idea for these blanks I got from Melinda Barta's book Custom Cool Jewelry. She uses stickers as an etch resist when using Etchall on glass pendants. I took some peel-off stickers and did a similar thing. But instead of etching the metal, I got some polishing cream and polished off the oxidation from the brass. When I peeled of the stickers again, only the areas covered by them were still dark. Why polish away that lovely patina? Because I could, and I wanted to test my idea. In the future I'll probably not remove as much of the patina as I did this time. But I will probably try it again, with smaller motifs.

One of the pendants was very boring so in a late night session, I decided to add some interest. Unfortunately I don't have that much interesting materials at home so I ended up grabbing what I hade: light brown and forest green StazOn ink pads. Adding the brown ink on the pendant didn't do it. So I got some copper-coloured embossing powder and sprinkled it around the leaf motif. No, not good either. So I drenched it in green ink. *sigh* and polished the pendant a bit so the green didn't cover the drops of embossing powder. Not pretty, but at least I got to try some new things.

The blank on the left hasn't been coated or anything so it'll soon start oxidizing (as you can see). I will let this happen just to see if I can get a nice, lighter patina in "exposed" areas.

Peel-off stickers is the only thing I've got a lot of right now so next I took out my Chinese-themed sticker sheet where I found a couple of pretty round dragon stickers. I simply put one on each side of a large, round blank. Haven't coated it yet, but it needs to be sprayed with protective lacquer before using or the stickers will soon fall off. The motifs don't look totally centred in the photo, but when I measured them, I found that they're actually spot-on. They just look a bit off the mark...

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