Thursday, 26 December 2013

Our top ten tools for making textures on metal

Experimenting with texture is a great way to bring new inspiration to your work and if you love working with texture we recommend our Metals Texturing Kit to give you a full range of tools to get started.However if you are in the mood to get your jewellery making bench a new tool, here are our top ten tools to make textures on metal:




 1. Crinkle Metal: If you love reticulation, this is an easy way to achieve the same effect. The metal reticulates as soon as it is brought up to temperature and can be formed first as it will hold its shape.
2. Charcoal Block: Great for granulation because of its super smooth surface meaning the little balls of metal you make won't stick to the block.
3. Ball Pein Hammer: Ideal for making a traditional hammered texture on metal. Use with a Steel Block.
4. Glass Fibre Scratch Brush: While useful for cleaning and preparing metals before polishing, it is also great for applying a matt or brushed finish to metals.
5. Cross Pein Hammer: A Ball Pein Hammer is great for creating a soft round hammered effect, but a Cross Pein Hammer is useful for creating a bark like texture on metal. Use with a Steel Block.
6. Satin Texture Wheels: Also known as flick mops or frosting wheels, these texture wheels will give your metal a wonderful, permanent satin finish. Available in fine and course.
7. Liver of Sulphur: Use it to achieve an antiqued, black or iridescent coloured patina on silver, copper, bronze, brass, gold and metal clays.
8. Patina Basics DVD: This super DVD is easy to follow and will take you through some great techniques using household products to achieve colour on metals.
9. Scriber: A good quality scriber is an essential tool for all silversmiths making score marks on sheet metal, but it is also great for making a dotted texture on metal when hammered gently. Marks are revealed with Liver of Sulphur.
10. Top Quality German Gravers. Available in different shapes, these gravers can be used for engraving pattern, marks and texture into metals. Make them more comfortable to hold with a Wooden Graver Handle.


Sunday, 22 December 2013

What is lapidary?


According to the Oxford Dictionary, lapidary (adjective) relates to the engraving, cutting or polishing of stones and gems. As a noun, a lapidaries is a person who cuts, polishes or engraves gems. The origin of the noun is Middle English, from Latin lapidarius (in late Latin 'stonecutter'), from lapis, lapid- 'stone'. The adjective dates from the early 18th century.

Diamond cutters are generally not referred to as lapidaries, due to the specialized techniques which are required to work diamond. Apart from figurative carving of gemstones, there are three broad categories of lapidary, the processes of tumbling, cabochon cutting, and faceting.
 
It is worth noting that many beads, cabochons and faceted stones are still cut by hand today and at Kernowcraft the majority of our gemstone beads will have hand drilled holes. This means that you need to be sympathetic to the type of bead you are using .As they are all supplied temporarily strung on thread it is very easy to overlook the size of the hole, especially when in the West it has become fashionable to thread them onto wire or headpins when they are not necessarily made with that use in mind in their country of origin. If you would like more information about working with beads with small holes, reads our detailed page here.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Last Minute Jewellery Makes

Don't forget that jewellery making doesn't need to take a lot of time - you can experiment with ready made settings for last minute gifts!

You can use easy to set settings such as Sterling Silver Snaptite Earstuds Settings also available in a pendant setting. You can make these in minutes as you simply need to push the stone into place and the claws will hold it tightly.

In the photo we used 5mm Round Sterling Silver Snaptite Earstud Settngs with a pair of 5mm Mystic Fire Topaz Faceted Stones.



Gallery Wire Settings are available in earring, pendant and ring settings and again can be made very quickly. You just need to choose your cabochons and use a Bezel Rocker to push the prongs of the gallery wire bezel over the edges of the stone.

Gallery Wire Settings are ever so versatile - we even used Sterling Silver Wire to add a White Head Drilled Teardrop Pearl bead.


Friday, 13 December 2013

Working with wire gives you a simple introduction to silversmithing

If you have been working with gemstone beads and want to take things a little further, consider making your own findings which gives you the opportunity to start working with metal.

We made these really simple earrings with some 0.6mm Sterling Silver Wire and two Cultured Freshwater White Pearl Beads:

With a length of 0.6mm Sterling Silver wire start by making the spiral in the end using a pair of Round Nose Pliers. Do the first turn using the pliers and then hold the spiral in between your fingers and wind the wire around another turn. Lay the spiral end down onto a Steel Block and using the flat side of a Ball Pein Hammer or Jewellers Hammer, tap the spiral to flatten it. You might find that you need to polish the spiral after hammering it, so use fine Wet and Dry Sanding Sheets and Polishing Papers to finish. Thread your Pearl Bead onto the wire and use Snipe Nose Pliers to form the shape of your ear wire, bending it around the widest part of the round nose pliers to ensure a uniform shape on both earrings.

You can customise this design by using thicker wire or a gemstone bead but remember that if using a thicker wire then you may need to use a Bead Reamer to make the hole in your bead larger.

If you want to buy everything you need to get started, then consider our Beginners Wire Working Kit. This kit contains the tools you need as well as a copy of The Encyclopedia of Wire Jewellery Techniques which takes you from wire wrapping, making chains and making your own findings right up to the basics of silversmithing towards making your first ring - a super book!

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

A Modern Pearl Necklace

A set of pearls is something every girl should own. Pearls are classic, pearls are ageless and you can choose your style with a string of pearls - they can be short or long multiple tumbling strands. You can can choose luxurious traditional white or dyed pearls in a range of colours that never loose their distinctive lustre.

We gave a string of Silver Sage Pearls a modern look but keeping with the tradition of knotting in between each pearl. Knotting serves a practical purpose as well as an aesthetic one, so that if the worst happened and they got broken then you don't loose all of your precious pearls. We love the look of knotted pearls and even love the process of handling each bead - a kind of therapy!

Once the strand was knotted using 0.45 Natural Silk Thread, we added Sterling Silver Necklet Ends (because they are ever so easy to use), securing the knots inside with a dab of C20 Devcon Epoxy Glue. Then we attached a 5mm Sterling Silver Jump Ring at one end and added a Sterling Silver Leaf Charm, finishing the necklace with a Sterling Silver Plain Flat Toggle Clasp.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Something Simple - Wire Drop Earrings

We know that designs don't need to be complicated to be beautiful, sometimes we just like to do something simple to showcase a single gemstone bead.

We used:
...and we've also shown you how they look using Rose Quartz Puffed Cube Beads.




Tools

Thread the Puffed Cube Bead onto the wire and bend the wire up on each side of the bead flush to the sides. Make one side just slightly longer than the length you would like your finished earring and the other end longer still. Our tip is to hold each end of each long end of wire with Snipe Nose Pliers and twist in opposite directions, this will ensure a strong, straight wire on each side.

Form a loop in the shorter end at the top using your Round Nose Pliers and use the long end to wrap around the base of the loop for several turns. Trim the end and squeeze secure. Your earring is now ready to hang from your Earwire.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Finding Inspiration


 
Inspiration for your designs can come from anywhere – current fashion trends, classic design, visits to museums and galleries, architecture, nature, photographs or travel. Sometimes you will find that inspiration will come from happy accidents and unexpected combinations. But if you need and injection of new inspiration to breathe new life into your creative process, consider the following:
 

Social Media - Pinterest

Pinterest gives you the ability to make online pin boards of things you like or are interested in. You can also follow fellow Pinners or boards that have a similar interest to you. Pinterest is a huge resource that has grown in popularity and you’ll find people have pinned great links to excellent instructions, words, pictures and products that other people have made or available in online shops – think of it like an online magazine where you can store cuttings. Follow Kernowcraft on Pinterest here.
 

Exploration of a new technique

Have a look in books such as TheWorkbench Guide to Jewellery Techniques or Complete Metalsmith and choose a new technique to learn. You’ll find that armed with some new skills, this will open up a wealth of ideas and possibilities.
 

Something old

Perhaps take inspiration from a piece of family jewellery or re-work old something depending on your level of skill. This could be using elements from broken jewellery, old beaded jewellery that needs re-stringing and you add a new element or perhaps you take design elements from something that you admire – this could be the most personal tribute to that person or piece of jewellery.

Colour

Choosing colour combinations is very personal and you shouldn't feel that there are certain colours that do or don’t go together, it is really down to personal taste. A good place to start is to select a colour or gemstone which you are drawn to and then select other stones that complement it and enhance its natural beauty. If designing for yourself or a gift you might like to start by looking at birth stones.

Texture

Whether it is using different finishes on beads, texture on metal, or different textured threads or cords you will discover that using different textures in your designs can add an interesting element. Texture features heavily in all modern design and jewellery is no exception with hammered and satin finishes currently popular, often with contrasting smooth, mirror finishes in the same piece. To get you started, try our Metals Texturing Kit which includes The Jeweller's Directory of Decorative Finishes - an excellent resource for inspiration!

Friday, 15 November 2013

Top Tips For Soldering

These tips come from one of our favourite authors, Tim McCreight. We think his book, Complete Metalsmith with its lovely hand drawn illustrations, accessible writing and common problem solving should be on every jewellery maker's book shelf.



Here is an excerpt from Complete Metalsmith to whet your appetite:

Rules for Soldering:

  • The pieces must be a tight fit.
  • The joint and solder must be clean: no grease, pickle, buffing compound, etc.
  • Use flux to protect the metal from oxidation. Each reheating usually requires refluxing.
  • All the pieces being soldered should reach soldering temperature simultaneously. Heat the adjacent areas to reduce the flow of heat away from the joint. Take into account heat sinks such as binding wire, steel mesh, and locking tweezers.
  • When possible, position the torch so as to draw solder through a joint. Generally, avoid directing the flame at solder.
  • Use just enough solder to fill the joint.
  • When soldering an enclosed area, provide an escape for the steam trapped inside. If not vented, this will expand and cause the piece to explode.
  • Metal temperatures are judged by colour changes which can be seen best in a dimly lit area. Whatever your lighting. Keep it consistent.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Can you resist the opals?

We are really excited to release our latest collection of opals, personally selected by us from one of our longest standing suppliers.

A visit from our opal supplier always causes quite a stir in the Kernowcraft office! As opals are best viewed in good, natural daylight, we take a seat in a sunny window and delight in trays full of exquisite opals! Our supplier has a range to suit any budget, so we’ve had the privilege of seeing boulder opals worth over £10,000 wholesale! Needless to say as this is a little out of most of our budgets, we always select a range of varying prices all at a wonderful quality. The pricing of an opal is judged on the brightness of colour and pattern; the brighter and clearer the colours, the more expensive an opal can become (the rarest and most expensive of all opals are the reds). As we have cherry picked each and every opal, you can be confident in the quality and that we only select pieces we ourselves fall in love with.

Don't hesitate if you see one you like, remember each one is individual so when it is gone, it is gone. For more information about opals, read All About Opals and view the collection here.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Pretty in Pearls





At Kernowcraft, we stock a wide range of pearl beads and cabochons. Pearls are always a popular choice, they can be classic or adopt the latest trend and happily combine with other gemstone beads. For inspiration, visit our board on Pinterest.
If you love Pearls and would like to look after your collection, consider a Town Talk Pearl Care Kit. This kit contains everything you need to clean your precious pearls. Each pack contains two sachets of pearl tissue and a pearl polishing cloth to bring your pearls up to a gleaming shine again. This pearl care kit can be used on dyed pearls but we would always recommend testing it on an inconspicuous area first to check for colour fastness.

How is a pearl made?
A pearl (salt or freshwater) is naturally produced within the soft tissue of a living shelled mollusc. Almost any shelled mollusk can produce some kind of pearl when an irritating object such as a grain of sand becomes trapped within the mollusc's mantle folds.

Natural freshwater pearls occur in mussels for the same reason that saltwater pearls occur in oysters. Foreign material, usually a sharp object or parasite, enters a muscle and cannot be expelled. To reduce irritation, the mollusk coats the intruder with the same secretion it uses for shell-building nacre. A nacreous pearl (best known) is made from layers of nacre, by the same process as is used in the secretion of the mother of pearl which lines the shell.

The luster of pearls depends upon the reflection, refraction, and diffraction of light from the translucent layers. The thinner and more layers in the pearl, the finer the luster. 

Natural pearls
A natural or wild pearl is one that forms without any human intervention and is very rare. Many hundreds of pearl oysters or pearl mussels have to be gathered and opened, to find even one wild pearl, and for many centuries that was the only way pearls were obtained. This was the main reason why pearls historically fetched such extraordinary prices.

Cultured pearls
A cultured pearl is formed in a pearl farm, using human intervention as well as natural processes. A tiny piece of mantle tissue from a donor shell or a spherical bead is transplanted into a recipient shell. This graft will form a pearl sac and the tissue will precipitate calcium carbonate into this pocket. 

Value
The value of the pearls is determined by a combination of the luster, color, size, lack of surface flaw and symmetry. All factors being equal, the larger the pearl the more valuable it is. Perfectly round pearls are the most valuable are rarest shape.

Lengths of pearl necklaces
Although perhaps not widely used now, there are special terms for lengths of necklaces:
Collar - Measures 25 to 33cm, sits directly against the throat and does not hang down the neck at all.

Choker - Measures 35 to 41cm, sit just at the base of the neck.
Princess - Measures 43 to 48cm, comes down to or just below the collarbone.
Matinee - Measures 50 to 60cm, falls just above the bust.
Opera - Measuring 70 to 90cm, long enough to reach the breastbone or sternum.
Rope - Measuring more than 115 cm, any length that falls down farther than an opera.



Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Andrew Berry from At The Bench Reviews Silver Crinkle Metal Sheet

Silver Crinkle Metal Sheet available at Kernowcraft.com

Silver Crinkle Metal Sheet is flat sheet metal that reticulates with lovely crinkled texture as soon as it is brought up to temperature, without the need for any surface preparation. It is fully annealed which makes it soft and easy to form. Traditionally, the surface of sterling silver needs to be prepared before reticulation which often governs your design.

If you would like to see how it works, watch Andrew Berry from At The Bench test and review it here.

The beauty of this metal is that it can be formed before bringing out the surface texture and it will hold its shape perfectly. This is such a great way to create beautiful texture on your pieces without any compromise on design. It consists of 80% silver and 20% copper reticulation alloy on fine silver (99.9% silver) back, giving an overall silver content of 96.6% which can be hallmarked.
Just heat to reticulate!

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Win a pair of tickets to Cornwall Design Fair!


For your chance to win a pair of free tickets simply e-mail marketing@kernowcraft.com with Cornwall Design Fair in the subject header. A winner will be picked at random and notified by e-mail by midday on Thursday 15th August.

The Cornwall Design Fair, in association with Hidden Art returns to Trereife House on August 17-19. This year promises to be better than ever, with top contemporary designers from Cornwall and beyond offering a huge range of products for sale – from furniture, textiles and ceramics to jewellery, glass, fashion accessories, lighting and more.

Look our for local jewellery makers Kernowcraft admire including Camali Design (Carin Lindberg), Carole Allen and Victorial Walker!

There will be something for everyone, with over 70 designer-maker stalls in two large marquees, design-led activities for children, live entertainment and a curated design exhibition inside the house. Now in its seventh year, the Cornwall Design Fair has established itself as a celebration of the quality and diversity of contemporary Cornish design. With increasing national press coverage and with visitor numbers previously exceeding 4,000, the appeal has widened to designers from further afield, all drawn to the inspiring setting of Trereife House, the beautiful Queen Anne ancestral home of the Le Grice family located in one of the most historically creative areas of Cornwall, Penwith.

The Fair is set in the beautiful grounds of Trereife House, situated less than a mile west of Penzance with direct access from the main A30. Open 11am – 6pm Friday 17 to Sunday 19 August 2012. Tickets £6.00 (including free entry to Trereife House and Curated Design at Trereife). Accompanied children under 16 go FREE.

Saturday, 27 July 2013

More positive feedback!

This week we asked for some feedback on recent orders from our customers on Facebook and were bowled over by the positivity and thanks from customers.

We love our work with all these wonderful gemstones, helping you to get the most out of your hobby and are lucky to work with a great team of people who make the great service and products we provide possible. Our customers are pretty awesome too. One of our Facebook friends has just visited us and bought us gifts of jam doughnuts and treats for the dogs. Lunchtime in the sun with a cup of tea and a doughnut I think... :)

Here are a few of the comments received:

 "I haven't ordered for a long time but are my supplier of choice & always have friendly service regardless of the size of my order!" Feebs PĂ©rez-Larbalestier


 "Service is always excellent and goods are high quality, just love looking through my catalogue" Faye Vane


"Received am order just last week and as always I was very satisfied with your service and speedy delivery. Thank you" Denise Rowntree 


"I'm more of an online orderer, but I've always been impressed – I know I'll get my goodies quickly, that I won't get ripped off over postage, and that the quality will be great. And when I've had a query (before buying an item – I've never had anything to complain about!), the communication has been prompt and courteous." Gwennan Thomas 


I visited you while I was on holiday and I love you all your happy and helpful staff make buying too easy xx" Cristine Sparrey


If you would like to write us a recommendation on Facebook visit us and like our page here.



Thursday, 18 July 2013

Learn essential techniques at Sedbergh Summer Jewellery Courses 2013



Visit Sedbergh School in Cumbria this summer to learn essential techniques and start your journey in jewellery making with professional jeweller Andrew Berry.

Experience techniques ranging from traditional hand skills to state of the art Computer Aided Machining, encompassing up to 8 seperate projects including:

Silver gem set rings and pendants Cold forging silver and raising copper Laser engraving anodised aluminium Different forms of casting – Cuttlefish, Delft Clay and Investment

The programme offers up to eight hours of tuition a day with a hot lunch included in the price. Advice and guidance on continuing skills post course and appropriate suppliers will be provided. Accommodation is available seperately in local B&B’s and hotels.
 
Course Dates

Monday 22nd July to Thursday 25th July
Monday 29th July to Thursday 1st August
Course starts at 10.30am on the first day and finishes at 4.30pm on the final day.

For more information and to book your place, phone: 015396 22616 or e-mail: eventsmanager@sedberghschool.org

Monday, 15 July 2013

Meet the 1-Step Looper

Bought it, love it! Best New tool in a long time. Consistent size loops throughout a project, great for making your own earwires or headpins, ideal for rosary style beaded jewellery or adding pin threaded stones to chain. Good weight, sturdy tool can handle a good variety of wires.
Gordon Stewart via e-mail

The 1-Step Looper by Beadsmith trims and loops precious metal wire, craft wire and copper or brass core wire. When you hold it, the 1-Step Looper feels like a quality tool. It is ideal if you use a lot of eye pins in your designs as it enables you to make your own quickly and consistently. It will also make a loop flush to a design of beads already threaded onto a pin. Watch the video here!
It will bend and trim soft or half-hard wire between 0.4mm and 1mm (26-18 gauge), however we’ve found it works best on 0.6mm – 1mm wire, creating a neat and tidy closed loop. If you’re working with 0.4mm wire we`d recommend having a pair of round nose pliers handy, just to tweak and tighten up the loop. The 1-Step Looper is also excellent if you haven't got as good manual dexterity for fine work.
Stocks are limited so don`t miss out!

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

The Eco Metal Issue


Being green is now a part of our lives, we recycle and reuse at home and at work so naturally we strive to be green in all pursuits. In jewellery making, some suppliers and makers are branding their precious metals and finished pieces as Eco - made from Eco Metals. This has raised an interesting debate at Kernowcraft, considering that perhaps this is just a matter of branding?
The nature of the precious metals trade is that a lot of the metal on the market is, in fact, recycled. People generally do not throw away precious metals as it keeps its value even when classed as scrap. A lot of silver is recycled not just from jewellery but also from the medical, electronic and photography industries - even workshop sweepings and it can be refined and recycled over and over again meaning that every piece of silver you buy has probably been on a long and remarkable journey; if only it could speak it would probably have some interesting tales to tell!

Friday, 5 July 2013

Make a limited edition bracelet or necklace with delicate faceted rondelle gemstone beads

Our lovely limited edition faceted rondelle beads just lend themselves to being restrung and coupled with a little charm either as a single strand or entwined with another to make a necklace or bracelet.

Simply thread the beads using 0.2mm Fireline Braided Thread, 0.2mm Natural Silk Thread or 0.25mm Illusion Cord and finish at either end with a pair of Sterling Silver Necklet Ends, perhaps including some Cone Beads if making a multiple strand design, Sterling Silver Jump Rings and a Sterling Silver Clasp. Then select the charm of your choice and pair it up with an oversized jump ring - we went for a 7mm Sterling Silver Jump Ring.

Monday, 1 July 2013

A note on P&P


After careful consideration, it is with regret that we have had to increase our standard postage and packaging charge to £2.50 in line with increasing Royal Mail costs, having kept it lower for as long as possible. This will come into effect 2nd July 2013.
 
We still feel this represents excellent value for money as the charge is the same whatever the size of your order, so a good excuse to order a few more bits! We constantly strive to have your order delivered as quickly as possible, Special Delivery charges remain the same.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Making your festival jewellery, it's all the rage!


It's all over the radio, festival season is here! As important as packing a tent, Festival Fashion has become a reportorted genre of style and the accessories essential! It is the perfect opportunity to make some new jewellery to wear or maybe your are even selling your pieces at some of this years events.

For some festival fashion fun, check out the mood on Pinterest, and here are a few ideas to get you started...

Celebrate the look by grouping together Sterling Silver Charms, adding them to necklaces and bracelets with jump rings or joining onto a Sterling Silver Caribiner Clasp to change the look of your existing jewellery.

www.chambersandbeau.com/jewellery/braided-leather-wraps







Charm beads are perfect when exploring micro macrame techniques, made extra special in sterling silver and gemstone. Combine with leather thong, some sterling silver crimps and a bolt ring or caribiner clasp.


Make bohemian chandelier earrings based on our Silver Filigree Component, adding drop briolette beads or use them with lashings of beads at either end of a multi strand necklace!



Thursday, 20 June 2013

Longing for Labradorite


Irene Neuwirth, Diamond, Labradorite & Gold Locket Necklace
The great thing about making your own jewellery is that when you come across pieces such as Irene Neuwirth's Diamond, Labradorite and Gold Locket Necklace on a premium website, rather than looking wistfully at it you can take inspiration instead! For most of us it simply wouldn't be practical to be wearing a £16,000 pendant anyway (that is what we tell ourselves) - it would be awful!









We swooned over this gorgeous pendant this morning and went to look in our drawer of Labradorite Faceted Top Cabochons. Low and behold there are lots of 14x10mm ovals to choose from! If this isn't enough, you can even go for a showstopper at 25x18mm and choose your style of pendant setting - we have a super locket to fit the 14x10mm. Team it with a Sterling Silver Mini Belcher Chain to get the look!

Friday, 14 June 2013

Delirious for Drusy



Our latest drusy cabochons are here. Available in a scintillating array of colours  - Periwinkle Lilac, Turquoise, Hot Pink, Rainbow Titanium, Shimmering Black, Kingfisher Green and Iridescent White these stones will not disappoint as in real life they are even more vibrant, reflecting the light with each movement. We even made a short video as we didn't think a photograph was enough!

Our new Drusy Cabochons are chalcedony or agate which have been carefully coated to give them their extra sparkle and colour. These Drusy are made by Vapour Deposition which uses materials such as Titanium and Platinum to give them a beautiful coating designed to be durable and withstand every day wear. You can be sure of the quality and resilience of these Drusy as we have worked with a trusted supplier in the US who have made our stones to order.
Be aware that there are many cheaper imitations on the market spotted by pools of colour on the surface and colour that rubs off or doesn't last - we even heard of an instance of sandpaper fused to glass to copy the effect! Kernowcraft has been established since 1967 and we have had relationships with some of our suppliers for over 30 years! We take the quality and authenticity of our stones very seriously so you can be sure that our Drusy are produced by a world leading laboratory.

The Question is, what will you do with your Drusy? To get you started, we made some earrings with Sterling Silver Milled Earstud Settings, choose your Drusy and glue in place – we recommend using Devcon 5 Minute Epoxy

For our bracelet, we used a Sterling silver Love Heart 19cm bracelet, 18x13mm Sterling Silver Milled Edge Link Setting, two Sterling Silver 5mm Round Jump Rings and set in place a luscious Iridescent White Drusy!

Monday, 3 June 2013

Perfecting Your Polish!


To ensure you get the perfect finish on your pieces, let Kernowcraft guide you through the process with our essential polishing supplies.

Wet & dry

Start the process with wet & dry sanding sheets. Use these high quality, waterproof papers to clean metal, remove scratches and get a fine surface ready for polishing. For best results work down through the grades from coarse to fine.
Garryflex Sanding Blocks are really handy - made from a resilient rubber impregnated throughout with abrasives they are perfect for gentle sanding of gold and silver. The fine grade is ideal for a pre-polish finish or creating a satin finish. The texture of these blocks are such that you can cut them into smaller pieces or shapes using a craft knife for those areas that are harder to reach when sanding.
Sanding sticks are great - you can use our sanding sheets to make your own sanding sticks or save yourself a job with our set of 8sanding and polishing sticks - these have sanding or polishing paper on all four sides for ease of sanding.

Safety first

Don’t forget to protect your fingers while you work – try Alligator tape! But don’t worry, it isn’t made from real alligators. Alligator Skin fingerprotection tape is a clever self-adhering fabric tape that will protect your fingers from minor cuts, abrasions and burns. The tape is thin and flexible, the clever part is it only sticks to itself leaving no sticky residue, won`t stick to clothing or hair and is easy to remove.

Shine on

Follow with polishing papers which are excellent for gaining a high sheen on metals if you don`t have power tools for polishing. Use these cloth-like papers after sanding sheets to polish your metal to a high sheen by simply working down through the coloured grades, changing the direction you are working in after each grade. Ideal for using with metal clay as they`re great for getting into awkward spaces. Finally finish and look after your pieces with a jewellery polishing cloth.

Power polish

If it is time to invest in some tools for polishing, our mops, wheels and points can be used with the Dremel 3000 Multi Tool - but don’t forget that if you are using tripoli and rouge then you will need a separate mop for each type of polish. Alternatively our silicon polishing wheels are impregnated with silicon carbide abrasives and produce excellent results. First select your mandrel and then your grade of cylinder or wheel.