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How To Replicate Unique Finish

Hello and good evening Orchid Community! My name is Austin and this is my first post here, so go easy on me! I have a strong admiration for a certain jewelry designer, and I’ve been trying to reproduce his texture on the jewelry that he creates, but I can’t figure out how. I’ve tried several techniques, including sandblasting, a 6" steel bristle buff, a mizzy wheel, etc. I’m starting to think that this finish may be a purely raw texture straight from casting (with stones cast in the wax?) and then it has been oxidized. That could be wrong as well, and it could have something to do with a technique used on the wax model, I don’t know, so I’ve come to you asking for help! I’m grateful to be here and the membership fee seems well worth it, considering the massive resource of knowledge we have at our disposal. I look forward to hearing your replies!

Included in this post are a few screenshots from this designer showing the texture/finish that I am referring to.

Wouldn’t it be better to contact that designer and ask how they produced that surface? That would also give them a chance to give you their blessing or express concern that you want to use a surface they might be known for…

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

This might be of use to you.
One texture is fine, the other a little more course.
They are done on 3/4 in copper plumbing tubing.
The tools used to create the texture are the adjustment screws
from Vise Grip type pliers, one is finer than the other.
I used a weighted rawhide mallet to hit them to keep from destroying the pattern.
Mike B


As Andy suggest, you could ask the original designer. You might get help, and on the other hand you might find yourself avoiding future legal problems.

As for the “pattern” , it looks pretty raw to me, as if directly from a casting, and just about as random as a finish could be.

When I am attempting to repair something with an unusual finish I find it pays to just play, and to not be afraid to try combining a couple different techniques when 1 alone is not achieving the desired results.

To me, it looks like it maybe started with a clean casting. The texture is non - directional, so it’s not mechanically applied. There might be a chemical etching agent as well, maybe ferric chloride or something stronger. It’s an either or scenario or both.
then black rhodium plating … with some sort of chemical bath to matte the surface.

April 23 |

Wouldn’t it be better to contact that designer and ask how they produced that surface? That would also give them a chance to give you their blessing or express concern that you want to use a surface they might be known for…

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

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You can get something ver close to the texture shown in the pictures of the
band rings.

Jerry in Kodiak

After 3000+ years of jewelry making, I don’tknow how anyone can claim as original a pure surface treatment. A design plus surface maybe, but just the texture of a surface? Anyone who gets their panties in a wad about someone using a surface similar to one they have used is just being insecure, in my view. If it is some secret process, maybe, but at this late date are there any such? Maybe someone needs to sue all the current granulators on behalf of the Etruscans. It could be a class action suit for anyone with Etruscan genes…to the OP, just find a texture you like that is your own which goes with the other elements of your work.


Did I get my panties in a wad? Everything still seems pretty smooth in the undergarment department from my end.

Roy, have you ever had a design or element of your work replicated? As an homage? Maybe you have and maybe you were cool with it. And maybe the maker of that surface would be flattered and cool with it too. But why not give them a chance to tell the real story of how they made the surface, rather than ask others to speculate. Just seems like a decent way to proceed.

Andy, Sitting in Denver in comfy underwear.

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…


looks a lot like an unfinished silver casting and a liver of sulfur patina to me.

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I’ve seen a gritty texture on silver where the smith “drizzled” some silver dust onto the surface and then torched it. This is close to that technique’s finish - probably not the same - but something you could play around with and see how you like it. :slight_smile:

Out of all the replies, this seems the most likely. I kind of applied Occam’s Razor to this mystery, and it makes the most sense. It just looks like the raw “finish” is a bit exaggerated, like the wax was heated to somewhat distort the surface a bit. Who knows? It appears as though the ring wasn’t finished in any way, shape, or form. It was simply a hand-carved wax model that was casted, buffed the tiniest bit to get a slight luster, oxidized, and done. I doubt it was even tumbled, as that would smooth the surface too much. Either way, this seems like the best method. As far as the dark color, I figured it was some kind of liver of sulfur solution.

Thank you all for the replies! It is greatly appreciated that I had such rapid responses, especially since I’m a rather new addition to this community. I apologize that there had to be a bit of controversy in the comments. That didn’t seem necessary. I did reach out to the Designer/CEO a few months ago, and his answer was extremely vague, only stating that his pieces were oxidized, despite me specifically asking about the finishing and casting process. The guy sells things like oxidized sterling silver bangles with black diamonds for >$2,000 (I know, it’s overpriced), so I’m not entirely surprised that he wasn’t sharing his secret, but after reviewing all of these replies, it doesn’t seem like the finishing process is that big of a secret at all, so I’m left feeling stupid. Some people may think the jewelry is terrible, tacky, or unfinished, and that’s fine. I appreciate the style and I’m beyond happy that you all pitched in to find an answer!

Well, here’s more controversy for you. How do you know that $2000 is “overpriced”? When you don’t know exactly how it’s made, how long it took to develop the process, what his market is and how his/her sales are.
I’m sure that you’re a considerate person but I sense a little irritation or even anger that this maker was “vague” in sharing how he makes his work. Is there some expectation that a maker must share their process?
And before others jump on me—or my bunched up undies—there are some things that I share when asked and some that I don’t.
When I teach, I try to be as generous as I can be but i draw a pretty strong line when it comes to how this information is utilized.
Austin, can I ask why you want to know how this Surface was produced?
And I would never feel stupid or foolish for not knowing a process or a technique, no matter how simple it might seem. I feel that we all have the right to ask questions, as we all have the right to answer them or not.
Andy in Seattle

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

That surface looks like some castings I got back from my caster when he was having an issue with his investment. I was getting back surfaces very similar to that, which were really difficult to sand/polish out without losing other important etched detail. I was very unhappy since I didn’t want extra sanding work, but it would be a finish that could actually be pretty great if you used it purposefully!

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I think you’re making broad assumptions, and I want to avoid controversy, because your perception is off and that’s okay. I have no irritation, anger, or ill will towards the designer. He is an inspiration and the entire reason why I became a jeweler in the first place. I idolize him. Perhaps it’s not overpriced, and the price is appropriately adjusted to his creative abilities and ways he incorporates the materials he uses in his designs. I’m perfectly content with all that, and I am more than content with the fact that he might not want to share his creative process. So let me clarify that. I’m okay with all of those things. I do, however, take a strong liking to the style of his pieces and I would like to incorporate it into my designs. I think that’s a decent answer. More importantly, though, is why did you preface your reply with, “Well, here is some more controversy?” Are you trying to ignite controversy with a complete stranger on the Internet without getting to the bottom of the question?

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I am CAD artist and making CAD last 16 years
in these picture from Austin , no created texture
just casting by 3d print piece and artisan not applied
abrasives and files ,
3d print piece>> direct cast >>>magnate clean
and you can take surface like it and then oxidized.


I just checked my earlier reply to this but couldn’t even understand it myself. What I was trying to say was that you can obtain that texture, or something very close to it, by running the sheet through a rolling mill with some very coarse sandpaper. “Oxidize” it and then polish the high spots. From the picture it looks identical to some I have made that way.

I have used that technique that jholeak suggests & although it creates an interesting texture like this one, be careful with the grit from the compressed sandpaper on those pristine rollers of your rolling mill. I would suggest you cut the sandpaper a tad smaller than the silver you want to texture, or make a “sandwich” with a piece of a lower cost metal like copper or brass. Clean the rollers carefully afterwards.

What about the more curved or intricate pieces?

This is texture created on 3d

Kapil Jain