Know the Method: Cold Forging
Posted on 04 December 2017
One of the main techniques used when working with jewelry is to forge metal which is when you manipulate and shape metal with localized compressive force. There are two main types of forging, cold and hot forging. Cold Forging (which we will focus on today) is when a piece is manipulated with a hammer at room temperature. We use a flat hammer, with a slightly rounded edge to avoid gashing the metal, to flatten and tapper our round wire.
A great example of this was last week’s picture of Natalie hammering our Pisces wire earrings (E756). To create this earring we need to shape the metal in a way that still allows it to slide through your ear but not slide out again (no one likes to lose an earring). Since this earring has no locked closure like some of our other wire earrings we use the hammer to create a streamline earring. By hammering one end and tapering up the metal with a lighter force we create a tail for our Pieces earring. This tail, while fashionable, is also functional. The tapered tail keeps the earring from pitching forward and working its way out of your ear throughout the day.
With most of our other wire ears, we have created a closure that is worked into the earring’s design. We simply use this hammer to flatten out one end in a bubble shape that is large enough to drill a hole. Once the rest of the earring is finished the tail will slide into that hole to close off the shape. This fantastic closure will keep your earrings in place, no extra backing needed!