28 March 2011

The perils of etching

I have had a frustrating time recently, as my etching has not been going well. Considering it often plays a part in my designs, things come to a bit of a grinding halt when it doesn't work. It's not just the pause in production that gets to me, but also the fact that sterling is sooooo expensive at the moment, that mistakes and problems really hit you in the bank balance! Recently I have had things under etch (ie not deep enough), over etch (fuzzy round the edges) and the result is the same - text you cannot read! I have been trying to etch wording to go with my 'Wilderness' story - a little range inspired by my trip up into into the Arctic Circle last month.

This image shows recent struggles. I should have been able to cut out little pendants that read 'the aurora borealis danced across the sky' and 'the pale sunlight of the north rose above the wilderness' but of these three etches only one is usable, and even then it is not as defined as I would like. I have spent part of this morning starting to file away the failed etches from the silver, in the hope of being able to re-use it in another project.

On a happier note, my stuff is back from hallmarking and I am really pleased with how it has been marked. I used a combination of my punched mark - which is only 1mm high so it can be used in rings, and some laser etched hallmarks - which are not so deep- but are bigger, 2 and 3mm. What a lot of polishing I have to do!

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