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Thursday, January 30, 2014

My amazingly, fantastic, super duper, saaaweet oily necklace with the Chomas Creations engraving tip

I have an amazingly, fantastic, super duper, saaaweet guest post coming to you from Michelle Glaeser.  Now because I know nothing about metal clay, this is all written in Michelle's words!  And if you are interested in an oily necklace all your own, look at the bottom of this post as she will work with you to make one for you!  And if you want to see what kinds of oils I'm putting in my new necklace you can visit my getting oily! blog.

Making Fine Silver Essential Oil Pendants with the Chomas Creations Engraving Tip
Amy is one of my best online friends these days!  We met over her lovely tools which make my main hobby (metal clay) more interesting.  About 1.5 years ago, I decided to follow along with some other metal clay artists on these Silhouette Cameo paper cutters for metal clay.  Well, I sure have enjoyed using this tool!  We had used it for cutting metal clay in the form of “paper.”  Wanaree Tanner has shared some great projects with this material and Amy’s cutters. 

Lately, Amy has gotten me interested in the use of essential oils, for well everything.  She asked if a pendant could be made of metal clay to allow the essential oils to be smelled all day around your neck.  For example, the blend oil called “Motivation” will help Amy stay motivated to get all our orders out right from her website!  (How could I not offer to help?)  How could I also not use her Engraving tip on the pendant?!

The idea behind this pendant is many cut outs to let the essential oil vent.   A piece of felt will be used to hold the oil.  I provided Amy several pieces of felt per pendant, so they could be interchanged and dedicated to particular oils.  The pendant is fine silver, and is reversible, so it’s like two pendants in one!  Who feels the same way each day?  So, besides swapping oil, Amy can swap designs with her mood!
So here’s what I did!  First Amy and I worked together to design a pendant for both herself and her son. I prefer to make pieces inspired by my clients, so we looked over some images and came up with the two images (top) below.  The black spaces are what I intended to remove to allow the essential oil to vent through the pendant and a grabbing notch for felt removal.  Then I rolled PMC 3, in lump form, rolled 2 playing cards thick the size of both the front and back of the piece.   I did not use glycerin to make it flexible and had no issues!  I made it dry flat.  In the image below right, it is on a piece of furniture foam; lets air all around the clay, helps it dry  flat. 


Then I add a piece of contact paper to the back, seen upper left in the image below.  It helps the clay on removal from the cutting mat and prevents silver from getting  stuck in your mat.  Because silver is pricy, and I don’t want to mis-cut on my Silhouette, I usually cut a window into a sheet on top of my cutting mat, so I know where to place the silver.  I slightly oversized my silver and matched the window.  After I cut the window with my blade, (I do not remove the cutting mat) I peel out the window, and place my silver in the window (upper right image below). Next, I install the Chomas Engraving Tip!
  Have you seen this cut?  Here she goes on fine silver metal clay!

I set up my engraving tip as a sketch pen; I set my thickness to 15.   I wasn’t looking to remove lots of material,  I was looking for a nice fine line. I ran my pass and ended up with the image seen above, lower right.  

There are other things I could have done here.  Because 2-cards thick is 0.5mm, a blade setting of 5 would cut through the windows I was looking to add.  Likely I’ll do this next time! ;-)  But I just used these lines as guides.  I used both an Exacto knife and a needle tool to trace the lines and remove the windows.  I used tiny needle files to clean up those edges.  Look how cute it turned out!!

So…I had to charge my camera…and didn’t get pictures of the box assembly.  I found 8-cards thick was sufficient to fit the felt inside the pendant.  I had two options, make wedges 8-cards thick (2 mm), or use a thinner sheet that is 2 mm tall.  This is what I did, to reduce distortion during firing.  I used Sherri Haab’s Paste Maker to make a thick paste to attach these walls to the faces of the box.  I filed the sides to create nice flat edges around the box (image below left, prior to firing).  I used a nail file to sand those edges flat and smooth.  The boxes stand on their own fairly well! 


Above, right, you can see the pieces after firing, polishing, and oxidizing.  I will let you know the boxes did fall (pinch inward) slightly during firing, next time I will add kiln paper in the center to help prevent this.  Another option is to set this on kiln paper, and fill with alumina hydrate.  I don’t prefer to use the alumina hydrate because it is caustic; however, because it is fine, it will be pushed out the holes as the box shrinks in the kiln.  I did use one of my flat needle files after firing to push the walls back flat (against the table) after firing.  You can see it all worked out just fine! Below we’ve got both pendants with felt ready to go!

If you’d like one of your own for your essential oil, I’ve got a listing in my etsy shop: mfglaeser.etsy.com!  For the Chomas Blog Readers, I have a $10 off coupon code: CHOMAS10!  Each of these will be made on demand with your help.  It’s not hard to get something you’ll like, just need some ideas about what you’re interested in!  The pendant itself is listed here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/176360753/design-your-own-essential-oil-necklace

If you try this one your own and need any tips feel free to contact me at mfglaeser@yahoo.com!  Hope you all had fun with this project and Amy’s engraving tip!

Amy here again!  I'm loving being in the Silhouette tools business and now the oily business!  I'm finding out so much about both, and there is so much more to find out!
And how lucky am I to be the first for the necklaces??   Want to see some of the oils I am using with my necklace?  Check them out on my new blog getting oily!

Like what you see? Leave a comment to let me know!


Tammy Jones said...

This is so awesome!!

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