Thursday, May 14

Bronze....the new Gold?

With the rising cost of gold many retailers have switched to making lighter weight hollow pieces or making silver Jewellery then plating it in gold (Vermeil). Alternatively they use "gold fill" which is when a solid outer layer of gold is bonded, with heat and pressure, to a base metal such as brass. Gold Fill is hard wearing and solid but is difficult to solder without melting the gold and the fill together (good for wire-wrapping though!).Recently I've been experimenting with bronze, which when polished gives that lovely golden hue. The advantages of Bronze are that it is a solid metal and it's very, very strong. The disadvantage is that is tarnishes so there is a maintenance element to keep it "golden".
It also contains copper so if you have acidic skin we'd need to seal the metal with resin or wax (to avoid that green hue). As it does contain copper it might be a good candidate for those arthritis bangles though!

What do you think? If you have the Midas touch and all that glitters on you is gold, would you think Bronze might be another alternative? I'd love to hear your views :)

Nicola xx

14 comments:

TicketyBoo Jewellery said...

wow, looks beautiful, amazing work
I have awareded your blog the "honest scrap award" to view this award and keep this award going please visit my blog
http://ticketyboojewellery.blogspot.com/2009/05/honest-scrap-award.html

JanJ said...

They look fab, that bracelet is stunning, I'd certainly consider bronze

Jan x

Mel P said...

Gosh these are lovely, the tree pendant is stunning. I am not a gold person, so bronmze is tops for me, I prefer the colour. Great blog, thank you xx

Joby said...

Already a lover of bronze, I think its the rich colour.
Thanks for sharing

Sue said...

Those pieces are just lovely! My bronze hasn't turned out great, so I haven't done anything with it at all this year. Seeing your work makes me think that I should give it another go.

SteamPunkGlass said...

I'd have no hesitation choosing bronze, much warmer colour than gold; personally I feel it's more sophisticated than gold now (all that bad ratners & argos 9ct has made it feel 'cheap')

SCJ Jewelry Design said...

I love the look of bronze but have not actually used it yet. I have some on order and can't wait to try it out! The pic's you posted are beautiful!

The Crystal Lady said...

Wow, the tree of life is one of my part of my logo so I love your bronze one.

Nicola said...

TicketyBoo - Thank you for the award (so nice of you!)
Jan, Mel & Joby - thank you for the feedback it's always great to get the opinion of a fellow crafter :)
Sue, you're so bloomin tallented you should definately give it another go, lol.
Thanks SCJ!
Crystal lady, the Avatar on your blog is awesome & the Tree of life has always been a favourite of mine too :)

Nic xx

pearl jewelry said...

This is an interesting story. Are there any special considerations in terms of customers allergies? I am not familiar with bronze and do not know if it is common to have allergies to this metal.

Nicola said...

Bronze is an Alloy (mix) of Copper & Tin. In the case of these pieces 89% Copper & 11% tin.
As long as your clients haven't got an allergy to those metals they should be fine. Bronze can contain trace elements of other metals though, so worth checking with your casting company :)
Nicola xx

twolefthands said...

Gorgeous pieces Murano! i love the bronze!

nigel said...

Hi in your experience does bronze or copper clay when finished need a backing to stop skin turning green

Nicola said...

Bronze and Copper will both potentially cause green skin :)
Some folks like this as they use them as arthritis bangles, rings etc...
To prevent it a coat of clear varnish or another backing layer eg polymer clay, silver, wood will solve the problem.

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