Hi Katherine, I would absolutely love to have the formula and
directions for the iridescent patina, if you have the time to
For all those who wrote to me both on and off list, I will be
sending the formula to Hanuman and Randy Smith. Randy has graciously
volunteered to post it on his website. If you've never visited his
website, it's worth dropping in for a visit at:
http://www.rocksmyth.com If Hanuman deems it worthy, perhaps he will
post it on the Ganoksin website.
...the patterned earrings with the iridescent patina. What did
you use to get the pattern? I have been experimenting with
different patterns, but I can never get any pattern with depth
unless I use screen wire or a metal template. Is it possible to
use such things as cloth, leaves, etc to get patterns.
The wave pattern with the keum-boo was produced by a commercially
produced plate by Metaliferrous. They have lots of patterns
available. You can produce your own plates as well out of tool brass
(yellow hard brass) by etching with ferric chloride, and using PnP
patterns produced from your computer or design books. Moire'
patterns, fractals and ding bats are good sources.
In addition, one of my favorites is just plain old cheese cloth that
has been teased apart, just enough that it looks well used, with the
weave being kind of ratty looking. You can use leaves, although
tougher ones hold up better than fragile ones. Use gingko,
eucalyptus, sassafras, etc. Feathers depend on the birds. Songbird
and others that have fragile feathers don't emboss as well, as say,
grouse or others with strongly structured feathers. All kinds of
cloth, lace and paper can be used. A good one is to use manila file
folders and cut patterns in them, especially with the infamous chads
With all, it is absolutely necessary to have well-annealed metal,
dead soft, to get the best, deepest and crispest impressions. It also
helps on thinner gauges to use sandwich material of red brass or
copper, but using these can take it too deeply with some patterns.
Frank and Sandra Goss have an excellent technical piece on roller
embossing on their website:
After you get the correct patina, do you have to cover the
coating with a spray to prevent it from getting darker or
After the patina is very well dried, I put on Renaissance Wax. It
really is the best product. It makes a tough, non-yellowing surface
that doesn't come off unless through severe abrasion or MEK. It's
used by museums to preserve everything from parchment to jewelry. It
does dull the finish slightly, so go a little more intense than what
you want for your final finish. If it's something like a bracelet or
ring, I make something, like guard wires, to prevent natural abrasion
from taking off too much through wear and tear. However, on
reticulatated silver, I don't, because the eventually wear and tear
highlights the high points, which become bright silver, with a
gradual diminishing of the highlights. Sometimes I even deliberately
'knock-back' the patina to allow the silver to come through as a
There is some darkening of the finish after several years, but not
like the oxidation you get with normal silver. The addition of the
mordants seem to stabilize it, and even without a protective wax
finish, it doesn't get the black. However, if when you are originally
taking the patina to black, this black is extremely tough, and has a
lustre that you can't get with typical oxidizing agents.
I hope this answers your questions. You're going to have a lot of
fun with that patina. It really changes a piece. Just remember it
looks best on something with texture, and the more texture it has,
the better it looks.