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Celtic Bands


#1

Hi, I’ve been wondering how jewellers create the black recess (i got a
picture on the below URL) in the background of celtic pattern rings
and others. Is it enamel? is there some kind of polishing technique?
Also, when celtic pattern rings are produced, are they generally cast
or hand engraved?

http://www.tradeshop.com/temp9/band2-celts-6-virt.jpeg

Tato


#2

At least with silver, the black is usually from antiquing the piece
in liver of sulfer. The liver of sulfer turns the entire piece black
and then the high parts are polished, removing the oxidation on those
parts. That leaves the black oxidation only in the recesses.

I, too, am curious how most celtic knot designs are made. Are they
carved in wax and cast? Are they woven with wire? Are they engraved
in the metal?

Sincerely,
JoAnna Kelleher, co-owner
Pearl Exotics Trading Company, LLC
Phoenix, AZ
Phn# 623.845.0998
Fax# 623.845.0917
www.pearlexotics.com


#3

Its an oxidizing agent containing sulfur, turns the silver black. As
for Celtic rings they can be stamped, cast or handmade. Castings and
stampings make up the bulk of what you see out there, its not great
quality but a few place do good work. However handmade is so much
better.

Ed Dawson
Maine Master Models
http://www.goldandsilversmithing.com


#4

Tato, An oxydizing agent, such as liver of sulphur, or other chemical
patinas, are applied to the design and allowed to dry. The top
surfaces are then polished leaving the recessed areas black. Joel
Schwalb @Joel_Schwalb www.schwalbstudio.com


#5
    Hi, I've been wondering how jewellers create the black recess
(i got a picture on the below URL) in the background of celtic
pattern rings and others.  Is it enamel? is there some kind of
polishing technique? Also, when celtic pattern rings are produced,
are they generally cast or hand engraved? 
Traditionally the blacking was done with niello, a mixture of lead,

silver, copper, and sulfur. Not much used in modern times. I
understand it is relatively safe and very enjoyable to work, but
NASTY to make (melting sulfur - yum). Nowadays most jewelers use a
liquid patination technique (liver of sulfur or Winox, or some
such). Paint it on, wait a while, buff off the highlights. This
appears to be the technique used in the photos you gave. I have seen
enameling done, but not often and in my opinion rarely done well. I
have also seen a Sharpie style permanent marker used. Again not
often and never well. The liquids mentioned can be found at any
jewelry supply shop. I prefer to shop locally as much as possible,
but on the web I recommend Rio Grande http://www.riogrande.com as
one of many good suppliers. Generally celtic rings that are mass
produced are cast, although I would guess that photo-etching would
be a close second. There are folks who are doing hand engraving but
usually at a higher price. The quality seems to be either noticeably
better than the cast work or noticeably worse. – Epaul Fischer
Gryphon Song Creations http://GryphonSong.com


#6

Hi JoAnna, I do both wax carving and metal carving of celtic knots
depending on the project. Another Orchidian, Loren does beautiful
celtic wire work. You can also weave or macrame wax wire. It’s all
fun.

Marta in Sacramento


#7

I’ve done a number of Celtic designs in jewelry, and I carve them in
wax and cast them. I’d love to etch, but so far haven’t been happy
with the results of my efforts.

-Amanda Fisher
Electric Celt ™


#8

Dear Epaul, You’ve gotten great responses already about niello and
Liver of Sulfur–all true. I’ve used a product called
"Silver-Black", by Griffith Distributors, P.O. Box 662, Louisville,
CO, 80027. It states on the label that it will give a “smooth
black patina on silver, gold, copper and bronze.” My experience is
that all that is true, but not for white gold. Do be careful–it
contains Hydrochloric Acid.

Gary Strickland, GJG


#9

I also do celtic bands… how I do them is to photocopy the design to
the scale I need it and then rubber cement it onto a piece of gold
(the desired thickness…) then I drill a bunch of little holes where
those little “black spots” are and commence to pierce the piece
until done…I do try to make them to exact size, this way there
are no seams, and it is a enternal knot… I have also mounted
them on a plain band and sandblasted the “nooks” with a polished
knot…this also makes for a nice look! I find this is a fairly easy
way to do the knots…and great peircing practice…see how many
drill bits you break and sawblades…why, when you are done a double
knot in a 6 mm strip that is 60 mm long (an average size), it seems
you are a king of celtic knots…(a matter of fact it is amazing
how few sawblades I break now!) -julia


#10

I’m surprised that no one has mentioned Celtic designs in PMC. It
is a wonderful medium for that and the PMC can be stamped with a
rubber stamp. If the regular PMC is used, the design reduces with
marvelous detail. However, this is better for pendants and larger
pieces. For rings, PMC plus is the better material.
Eve Welts, PMC Instructor


#11

Hi, You can use any brand of Bleach (I think you have to mix with a
little water and leave for about 10mins or so) it doesn’t go quite as
black as the professional liquids, but it works.

Thanks Paul Townsend
http://www.beau-jangles.com