Hello all. Here is an overview of the process. I use fine silver and
24K as my overlay materials on sterling silver or 18K jewelry and
Roll out 24K or fine silver to .03mm or thinner.
Cut shapes with exacto knife, paper punches, scissors, disc
cutters, arch punches, etc…
Sandwich 24K gold or fine silver in-between sheets of vellum or
tracing paper as support.
Zerox or print designs onto vellum or tracing paper for
Surface preparation of sterling or 18K item to receive overlay: -
Heat to annealing temperature, quench in water then pickle. - Repeat
process 2 to 3 more times for sterling, 4 to 5 for 18K.
If the pieces to be keum-booed are flat, place them on a sheet of
metal (copper, brass, steel). The items in my production line start
out flat so I lay out several pieces at once on the metal sheet,
then place the sheet on the coils of the hot plate. If the pieces to
be keum-booed are dimensional, find or make something that will
conduct heat to as much of the surface as possible.
Brush water or a thin solution of gum tragacanth over the surface
of the sterling or 18K item. Water acts as a lubricant, gum trag as
a glue for dimensional items.
Small pieces of gold or silver can be picked up with a paintbrush
dipped in either solution.
Make sure everything is dry before heating.
Turn your hot plate on High. After the overlay is tacked in place
you may turn it down to Medium to finish burnishing. This is a
general guideline. Use whatever setting you need to get the metals
hot enough to bond). Heat with a torch if necessary.
Wear gloves heavy enough to protect your hands from the heat and
have tweezers on hand to hold pieces down.
You will need to cool off your burnisher in cold water or 24K will
stick to the burnisher.
Tack the overlay first by pressing hard, not rubbing, in one
It is very important to work from the center out to the edges.
Trapped air will form bubbles. They can be pricked with a pin and
then re-burnished, or flattened when cooled. Feel free to e-mail me
with questions or better yet come to Maine and take my workshop at
Workshops at Wolf Designs, October 17-18. The leaves will be