Skip to main content

Beginning Wirework for Jewelry Making

Lesson 6 of 7

Oxidyzing Silver

Raissa Bump

Beginning Wirework for Jewelry Making

Raissa Bump

Starting under


Get access to this class +2000 more taught by the world's top experts

  • 24/7 access via desktop, mobile, or TV
  • New classes added every month
  • Download lessons for offline viewing
  • Exclusive content for subscribers

Lesson Info

6. Oxidyzing Silver

Lesson Info

Oxidyzing Silver

All right, I'm just going to quickly talk about finish, ok, so you've got the bangle, you've got the rings and you've got the hearings in different stages. There they're shaped and well notice that when they come out of the pickle, they've got a mat tone to them. So silver, when you heat it up and put it into the pickle sterling silver is what we're working with there's a little bit of copper in the metal there's other sterling silver is nine hundred twenty five percent silver out of a thousand. The rest is copper that's what make it makes it sterling there's an alloy in there that's the park but the fine silver, which is pure silver, comes to the surface and it's this white powdery looking thing and it's it's matt, put it that way so you can decide what you want to do with these. You can leave them that they'll shine up as they're being worn little by little, or you can oxidize with liver of sulfur to make it dark, which is this kind of coloring mean, we all know silver tarnishes and ...

most the time, if you wanted to not tarnish it's one of those things that's annoying about it, but you can oxidize on purpose to get the dark finish. So I'm going to show you how to do that now the mixed material ones, the copper in the silver, I suggest you don't oxidize because it will cover ups that combination the liver of sulfur patina that I'm going to show works on copper as well as sterling it's actually working on the copper the most. So it works beautifully with copper were speeding flee with this silver, too, but, you know you just cover it up, so keep that as the mixed metal, I suggest. And then if you want, you can have a shiny silver and you can have the oxidized silver. It doesn't penetrate into the metal it's more of a surface thing, so over time it will burnish up. And if it's the twisted wire and stay in the low spots that never get touched, or it will, you know you can redo it, reapply it at some point if you'd like to, but okay, so let's go over here. The liver of sulfur smells like rotten eggs, like one of those things itself, so for silvery and you can get in different forms. This is a gel form, you can get it more of like a crystal rock crystal form, and I don't do any you know precise measuring here's an estimate of looking so you want to use it with warm water never boiling water nothing super hot but is a chemical reaction just like the pick goal and the acid here that a gentle kind of not not a super hot you don't want to ever put the pickle either on super high doesn't need to be super hot but the reaction will happen faster than cold so it's helpful to know little pickle pot are a little crack pot that you have warm water in and that works or yeah or really hot water to boil water and then add some cold water to it just nothing too too hot okay so I'm going to take the tongues the copper tongues and place a little bit into this and stir it up you don't want to be right over it and it's an estimate here I mean the deeper the color the more you put in the faster it works a swell but there's no reason for it to be super intense you always want to keep this covered so you don't want to be um you don't wantto just have that just keep going you know on and on and on with it open and you can turn it off to suggestion is toe turn it off and not just keep it always on all day long to just kind of keep it warm when you need it so you can take a piece that is not oxidized sterling silver and place it in to the pickle. And this is also pretty magical works really fast and look at that oxidized already. You never want to really get it on your hands if possible, so let's, just put it in water. This one actually is water with baking soda, some neutralizes and then dry it off, and you can use a breath brush to finish the brass brush with a little bit of water to shine it up a little bit, or you can work it in a tumbler. So also, if you have she or something more, you, you can put it in the liver of sulfur, get it to be oxidized a bit, take it out, brass, brush it and then put it back in and layer it up a little bit. So you'll have a more consistent and a little bit of a deeper blue black coloring to it.

Class Description

Learn how to manipulate wire into beautiful, handmade twisted wire jewelry with Raïssa Bump in Beginning Wirework for Jewelry Making.

Raïssa is a lifelong jewelry maker and she’ll bring her experience and love of the craft to this beginner-friendly class. Basic twisted wire stacking rings, bangles, and earrings are a great starting place for aspiring jewelry makers who want to experiment with malleable metals. In this class you’ll learn:

  • Basic wire and plier work rules
  • Techniques for twisting wire varieties
  • Fusing, soldering, shaping, and finishing techniques for twisted wire jewelry

Raïssa will take you through the ring, bangle, and earring making process, from start to finish, and teach techniques you can use for your future jewelry work.

Check the bonus materials below for a complete product list of the tools and supplies you need to finish this project.


Luminary Organics

This is a fantastic class for a beginning jewelry maker. Raissa is a wonderful teacher. She explains what she is doing as she does it and takes her time to make sure the student understands why she is doing each step. I have watched this class twice so far. The first time I made three different twisted wire pieces for bracelets. The second time through, I made two bracelets and three rings! Thank you CreativeLive for bringing Raissa Bump to your platform!

Nadja Meyer

Good starting point if you have never done any Jewelry at all before