Fibula type brooch, soldered pin?

I want to make a fibula type brooch, I’d like it to look s though it was one piece. If I solder the pin to the main section would the joint be strong enough?

Maybe, but it wouldn’t be a fibula. It’s as if you made a belt buckle and soldered the tang to the rod it pivots on. It would still look like a belt buckle, but it wouldn’t function like one.

Fibula is merely the Latin word for brooch. There are many ancient brooch types that are called fibulae in the art historical literature. It sounds like you’re referring to a penannular, or pseudo-penannular, brooch.
There are many modern reproductions which have the pin permanently attached to the ring with the center part of the pin cut away. When the brooch is worn it looks as though the pin goes through the fabric of the garment. The brooch is pinned with a regular pin and catch hidden on the back.
IMHO, that is a cheap, costume jewelry dodge. But it does have the advantage of not making large holes in light-weight or tightly-woven cloth.

Your question is if you solder a fibula component will it be strong enough? The answer is it depends. Most solder seams are strong, unless they bend. If they bend back and forth more than once or twice, they’ll probably break. If you’re going to solder the parts you’ll need to design them so there’s no bending. This is especially true with easy to bend wire forms like most fibulas.

Fibulas are one of my favorite types of jewelry. I think they’re really fun to make and I love the history behind them. I will say that one of the aspects that makes them fun and challenging for me is that there is no soldering, but that’s just me.

Most fibulas are credited with being the precursor to the safety pin, but like Elliot_Nesterman says that’s not completely true. Celtic and Viking fibulas for instance look very different from Roman ones.

Philip Fike and Ramona Solberg are two jewelry artists who are often credited with reexamining fibulas in modern times. I saw that one of the main articles about Phillip Fike is here on Ganoksin. I thought that was pretty cool!

Here’s some Ramona Solberg fibulas from the Smithsonian.

Feel free to post an image or two of what you’re making and we can brainstorm how best make them be structurally strong.



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