This collection is all about dark pieces! I have a mixture of current SPJ designs and new ones that all were oxidized to have a dark, almost antique silver look. What I really love about doing this is it really highlights the hammered textures! I also really love this idea of offering pieces oxidized to provide a contrast to my current offerings. If you haven't noticed, I'm a big fan of black and white...well, everything. Why not apply that to my SPJ silver?
What is oxidization? It is essentially darkening the surface of the silver via a chemical process. Almost like dying your hair dark. In a funny way, it's almost very much like tarnishing silver on purpose. If you've read my other blog posts about tarnish, you know that that is also a reaction that happens on the surface level of silver based on the environment. In this case, I wanted that dark, almost antique silver look.
How do I oxidize my pieces to achieve this look? First I create them as I normally would. Then I dunk them all in a liver of sulfur bath, which is quite an unpleasant smell so I do this outside. Dunking them all in a bath helps provide an even and through coating of all sides to the pieces. I may move them around to ensure that all of the piece has a nice patina. Once they are sufficiently dark, I remove them from the liver of sulfur bath and give them a good rinse. At this point, I either gently polished them to keep the piece all black, or I rubbed some pieces with steel wool to wear off the patina in certain areas and leave the black in the recessed parts. You'll see this technique on pieces that still look like they have silver as well as the dark black parts.
This collection is also a sample collection to see how well these oxidized pieces are received. If this collection goes out well, then I'll plan to offer more pieces oxidized. Some designs are one of a kind, which means I don't plan to make them again. Others I may continue to provide as a regular offering. It all depends on what sells and what feedback I get.
You may have noticed some pieces are previous SPJ designs but I named them differently for this collection. An example of that is Belle, originally known as Jasmine. I wanted to make sure I properly distinguish these oxidized pieces for now, so I like to think that I gave some of my designs an "alter ego". In the future, I don't plan to keep it like this. Instead I'll probably have one listing for the design itself and offer variations.
Want to see my new oxidized collection? Click the link to be taken there!
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