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Punched Metal Jewelry

In this class instructor Aisha Formanski teaches you her technique for creating all over repetitive patterns using simple design stamps and graph paper. Create a simple pair of earrings using blanks, or take this technique to the next level and fabricate your next piece from punched sheet metal. The options are endless!

Aisha’s book New Directions in Punched Metal Jewelry has 8 punched patterns, and 20 beginning jewelry projects.

hi my name is Aisha fromansky and I'm

here with Beaducation.com today to

show you my favorite method of stamping

which is also a method that I wrote a

book about I call it punch metal jewelry

punch metal jewelry is a technique where

you use design stamps to create

repetitive all-over patterning and now I

came up with this design a while ago

when I wanted to do this and I didn't

have a rolling mill so what I did was I

use graph paper and create all these out

what I think are really cool patterns

that are actually in the back of my book

but today I'm going to show you how to

use graph paper to build your own custom

design so let's get started here are the

tools and materials we're using in

today's class bench block sandbag

1-pound brass mallet plastic mallet and

a variety of design stamps let's talk a

little bit about which design stamps I

prefer for this technique I like small

little detailed stamps like these the

asterisks the period the three bubbles

set and other small little design stamps

like the flower and the star here are

more tools we'll be using metal shear

chain nose plier hole punch pliers

medium grit file extra fine steel wool

find the point permanent marker a larger

permanent marker for darkening your

impressions scissors graph paper this is

10 by 10 squares within one inch

gluestick and plastic templates when

making punch metal jewelry you can use

sheet metal or blanks in today's class

were making earrings so you may want

some ear wires this technique offers a

lot of different design options as you

can see here I tend to stamp a large

piece of sheet metal and then fabricate

my pieces from that large sheet metal as

you can see here but you can also use

blanks which is really really handy also

take into consideration when you're

looking here you can do really simple

things like this sample here which is

just using the four-cross stamp in the

period stamp and stamping each

intersection of the graph paper so

that's pretty simple these ones here a

little bit more elaborate and we're

gonna go over how you can do that on

your own and then like I love this

little Chevron one because why not just

one stamp stamping it all over and it

creates a great texture in my book there

at 8 patterns plus one graph paper for

you to photocopy and use yourself of

course you don't have to use my patterns

in the book or my specific graph paper

you can find this readily on the

internet and at basic stores this is 10

by 10 so it's 10 little blocks by 10

little blocks in 1 inch and I find that

this is a great size because it's so

small and our design stamps are super

small so it allows for a lot of

different design options in different

quadrants so we're going to use this

today to teach you how to create your

own pattern so let's adhere it to our

sheet metal now what I do is I take a

glue stick I use a an extra-strength

glue stick and I apply the adhesive to

the sheet metal and you're going to want

to be kind of liberal with your

application because if you don't have

enough glue on here while you're working

your people will start to peel up and we

really want it to stay adhered the whole

time we're

okay you can also use rubber cement it

works great

I find that glue sticks sir

or rather we have help all around the

house so there we go you can see how

much glue is on here now what I do is I

place my graph paper face down and press

my metal on and let's trim off the

excess here and then I really burnish

this down with my fingers

no air bubbles pretty smooth and then

trim your access

all right now we're ready to punch for

the piece that we're going to make in

today's class I'm going to use these two

stamps which are two of my favorites the

period stamp and the crossed our stamp

we're going to start with the period and

let's talk a little bit about where I'm

going to start and why I like to start

by sectioning off a square within the

grid so for an example I am going to

section off a square that is four

squares like in here so it's a square

that's two by two and I'm going to

strike each corner of that square so

let's start with that

as you can see I've just started

establishing my pattern so I'm going to

keep working striking at each of those

corners for the whole little piece of

sheet metal here all right I have

completed the period stamps striking the

corner of each 2x2 square here and let

me show you a little trick sometimes my

eyes play little tricks on me they're

not as good as they used to be and I

can't tell if I have completed so what

you do is you flip it over and you just

take a peek just look around and skies

if you've forgotten one it'll be really

obvious and you can go back in and

strike that intersection alright so now

I'm going to add the cross star stamp

and I took a look at this and I've

decided that I think it'll look fast to

place this little cross star right in

the middle of the 2x2 square so let's do

that now

as you can see I'm being pretty

particular about the placement of my

stamp this stamping technique has a lot

of structure it's very uniform some may

say it's maybe a little you know

retentive but I think that that's why it

is so beautiful is because the

patterning creates this really

repetitive very uniform stamping will

keep stamping here you may notice that

when I was stamping the period stamp

I was just striking it once it's because

the period stamp is really just a good

teeny spear and you don't need that much

oomph behind your behind your blow to

get a nice impression whereas with the

cross star there's more design so we're

dispersing more metal so I'm striking it

twice you might even need to strike it

three times depending on your strength

in your hammer all right this is the

perfect time also to show you see how

it's starting to work now I usually let

this go for a while until it gets in the

way but once it starts to work what I

like to do is flip it over and take a

plastic mallet and give it a few nice

wax that just flattens it back out it

makes it easy to continue stamping

so I'm going to keep going off-camera

and fill the rest of the 2x2 squares

here I have the piece all finished

I've add the cross added the cross star

and all the little 2x2 squares I think

it looks pretty good now you could add

more designs if you wanted you could add

you know a little burst where the crusts

are meets the dot you could do all kinds

of things I'm just going to keep it kind

of simple I think it's nice so I'm gonna

remove the paper template off the sheet

metal and how I'm gonna do that is I'm

going to take it to the sink and put

some warm water on and just rub it with

my fingers and then I'm gonna brush it

with a used toothbrush and the reason

I'm doing that is because every time we

strike to create our impression we're

actually pushing the paper down deep

into the impression and that loes little

fine bristles on the toothbrush will

just clean it up and pop them off also

when I get back we can talk about this

little edge and how to clean that up

because if you're gonna do this

technique on a blank this is gonna

happen quite a bit so let's let's

remember to come back and talk about

that alright see you soon here's that

blown out edge that I was telling you

about so you can see the design stamp

forced the metal out past the edge so if

you're using a blank and you want to

keep that defined edge of the piece

you're gonna want to make sure to file

this file that way maybe even follow up

with a little sandpaper to smooth it out

here is the finished sheet metal I think

it turned out pretty cute looks good

let's talk about designing with this

sheet now we have been looking at it as

a square right because I kept talking

about a 2x2 square but the reality is

when you start designing you can cut out

shapes with a lot of different methods

you can use templates like we have here

but you can also just trace things you

know you could trace a bottom of a small

little jar for a circle really just kind

of look around your house and try to

find some interesting shapes the end of

a lipstick sometimes is a really nice

rounded square we're gonna use a

template so let me show you here how you

can look at the pattern in a different


let's start with the square so I can

trace the square onto the sheet metal

and then cut it out with shears so this

way I see it as kind of right angles but

maybe what I want to do is turn it

and have it come diagonal like that for

more interest maybe I want to use the

teardrop and I can have it square

starting with the period stamp at the

very tip or I can pivot and have the

cross rest coming across diagonally so

this is another way for you to expand on

your design I'm going to make a pair of

earrings using the teardrop shape my

fine tip sharpie marker here just trace


I also tend to make sure that I'm using

the smallest amount of metal so that if

there's any remaining I can use it for

another project so it's actually flip

this see if I can get another one out of

this corner

then with the shears I'm going to simply

cut out the shapes

sometimes when you cut with shears

getting around just small areas is a

little difficult so getting around this

little tip sometimes I'm gonna give it

quickly and then the straightaways are

the easiest parts of course if you have

a more complicated design you may

consider sighing which is one of my

favorite things to do I teach a class

here at education on song if you're not


here are the two little tear drops now

they don't look so pretty yet right

they're kind of rough around the edges

and we can still see the sharpie so

let's refine these a little bit bring

the bench bench block back into play

here there's got a little warped while

cutting them with the shear so I'm going

to give them a couple smacks and let's

remove the sharpie marker this is very

fine steel wool it's zero zero zero zero

steel wool which I find very handy for

cleaning things up or giving them a

rough little organic finish the edges

got kind of wonky when I was cutting

these shapes out with the shear so let's

refine these even more using a file I

like to flip it over and look at the

shape from the backside so I'm not

distracted by the pattern so here we can

see that we've got a lump

with filing I have the way I said as I

file on the push some people say that

you start from the tip and work down

that's so the grit is actually working

if you go back and forth back and forth

you're just kind of dulling your file

it's not the worst thing to do but you

might want to get in the habit of just

filing on the push it's nots getting

better just continue all the way around

smoothing out any lumps and bumps you

may want to darken the impressions for

example on this pendants targeting them

really makes the design pop you can also

just leave it blank or naked like this

my ring has no darkening in the

impressions but let's do it just for

examples sake so sometimes we like to do

what we call the quick and dirty method

here at education of darkening

impressions which is to use a sharpie

marker and you just simply draw all over

the blank filling all of those

impressions with ink it's a little messy

but it's okay of course you can also use

liver of sulfur black max depending or

hydrochloric acid depending on what

material you're using there's also a lot

of other really fun colored patinas out

there that would look great on this


make sure to get that ink deep in those

impressions the period stamps hard to

fill in sometimes

nor did I think I filled everything let

it dry for a second you don't want to

touch a pro polish pad to this if the

ink is wet or even the steel wool

everything will just stick to it it

looks pretty good

bring that steel wool back in and simply

just rub the excess away

I'm gonna pop a hole in the top for your

wire because we're making earrings this

is our handy-dandy hole punch pliers

what I like to do is place the pin on

the piece and then I take a look and

make sure it's in the center and exactly

where I want it that looks pretty good

then squeeze and then simply we're just

going to add the ear wire so we have

these simple little ear wires and you

just take your chain nose plier and just

very gently pivot the loop open and I

just open them just enough to slide the

piece on take the ear wire thread it

through the front

grab that chain nose pliers again and

pivot it back and of course do the same

thing on the second piece there so that

you have a matching set and you have

these cute little earrings using the

punch melt technique I think they turned

out pretty great

here are some finished pieces of jewelry

I made with punched metal sheet here I

have a charm bracelet this is actually

in my book where I made three different

charms out of three different metals and

three different patterns I think it

creates a nice contrast with one another

here's the ring I was wearing earlier I

love that it's the only piece that I

actually wear daily that doesn't have

the impressions darkened I really I

really like how it looks and then these

two here with the copper I want to talk

about this one a little bit see how the

top of the circle is cut off well this

happens sometimes when you're doing

punch metal jewelry let's take a look

here can you see how there's a bite out

of the top like that and this is because

when you use a blank and sharp stamps

like the slash and the parentheses

sometimes when intersections meet you

can actually create a weak section in

the blank and it will pop off so just

make that a happy accident like I did

here and come up with a creative way to

make something else look beautiful out

of it if you'd like to replicate these

pieces that's going to point out that

this piece is riveted there are three

little rivets right there those are the

bee education nail head rivets and those

are the same things used here on the

leather bracelet but the ring has been

soldered these beautiful earrings were

made by Taryn McCabe here at bee

education comm she's on the design team

two very very talented she made these

after reading my book and I love her

interpretation of how to do repetitive

pattern but using a very detailed design

stamp well we're talking about design

design options I wanted to show you some

other sheet metal that I stamped these

four designs are very different from one

another but it's using the same

technique so the first one here on the

right is using the graph paper and

expanding your design further than the

2x2 square that we previously used this

one here I call it peacock design

because it has these nice arches that

patterns from my book and then these two

are simply using the graph paper and

striking it each intersection of the

graph paper but with different design

stands to create a different look so the

options are endless thanks so much for

taking my class I hope you had a really

good time and remember if you want a few

more patterns there are eight in the

back of my book and it also comes along

with twenty fun projects so I hope

you'll take a look and we look forward

to seeing you again here at Beaducation.com



Tools & Materials

Jewelry Making Tools 1 lb  Brass Head Mallet / Hammer
1 lb Brass Head Mallet / Hammer
Jewelry Making Tools Plastic Mallet / Hammer
Plastic Mallet / Hammer
Jewelry Making Tools Steel Bench Block - 4" x 4"
Steel Bench Block - 4" x 4"
Sold Out
Jewelry Making Tools Metal Hole Punch Plier, 1.5mm  hole
Jewelry Making Tools French Shears
French Shears
Sold Out
Jewelry Making Tools German Chain Nose Plier With Ergonomic Handle
Jewelry Making Tools Lindstrom Chain Nose Plier RX7893
Jewelry Making Tools Industrial Sharpie Marker
Industrial Sharpie Marker
Jewelry Making Tools Steel Wool #4/0 (0000)
Steel Wool #4/0 (0000)
Wire & Sheet Metal Copper Sheet Metal, 3" x 3", 24 Gauge
Copper Sheet Metal, 3" x 3", 24 Gauge
Sold Out
Wire & Sheet Metal Copper Sheet Metal, 3" x 3", 22 Gauge