Wednesday, September 11
Faux Pearl Perfection... DIY Vintage Reproduction Jewelry by Carole Lassak
Hi!! Carole here with another jewelry piece to share with you. For those of you who follow the Amazing Mold Putty blog, you know that I am drawn to jewelry projects. Today, I'm going to walk you through the steps for creating great reproduction pieces using Amazing Mold Putty and Amazing Casting Resin – along with a couple other Amazing Crafting Products.
A friend found this vintage brooch at a garage sale that, sadly, had seen its better days. You can see that several of the stones are missing. When stones are missing, you need to decide how you will treat your finished piece. Will you add new stones? Would you prefer to finish molded stones? I molded a small section of this brooch so you can see the difference stones or no stones makes in a mold, and hence in the final casting.
The bottom depression [marked 2 in the photo] is from the faux pearl, and would result in a raised "stone" formed in the casting. The top element [marked 1 in the photo] would result in a depression where you could add your own stone. For this project I chose the remove all the remaining stones and add my own to the finished casting.
Another important consideration when working with vintage jewelry is to be sure you have a clean original. Amazing Mold Putty picks up the tiniest surface imperfections. So, I carefully remove any traces of old adhesives. This is especially common with old rhinestones. Often the metallic backing on the stone remains adhered to the metal. This is work for my jeweler's files and Dremel. Here you can see the remnants of glue along with rhinestones that I haven't yet removed. After I've removed all the loose bits and pieces, I soak the original in hot, soapy water and give it a good scrub.
Now that I have a clean original I can mold the piece using Amazing Mold Putty. It's so easy – just mix equal parts "A" [white] and "B" [yellow]; then knead together until there are no streaks. Next form a ball or egg-shape, depending on what you're molding, and flatten the putty. Watch this video of the molding process to see how easy it is.
Next I filled the mold with Amazing Casting Resin. Again, mix equal parts "A" and "B", stir until there are no streaks, and pour into the mold. Amazing Casting Resin is opaque white when it cures. If you want a colored finished casting, just add a drop or two of one of the Alumilite dyes.
**Here's a TIP for filling your molds: pour the resin down your stir stick to "guide" the resin into the mold. This helps get the resin in narrow areas without excess over-fill.
When the casting is cured and removed from the mold, I use the jeweler's files and my Dremel to sand any rough edges and remove any stray "resin feathers" on the edge of the casting.
To simulate the metallic finish that I wanted on this casting, I mixed Alumilite Gun Metal Metalllic Powder and Gold Metallic Powder, is separate batches, with USArtQuest PPA to a consistency of acrylic paint. I painted the Gun Metal over the entire piece – front and back. Here it is hanging on my worktable to dry.
After the Gun Metal coat dried, I highlighted areas on the brooch with the Gold Metallic Powder/PPA mixture. Another drying session, and then a finish coat of plain PPA.
I also made a dark version using the finished technique that I shared in a previous post. Here are the two finished reproduction vintage brooches.
So, tell me – which one is your favorite?
The gun metal highlight with gold or the darker faux patina one?
You can see more projects on my Create & Craft blog.
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