ringing the changes

I mentioned yesterday that I received an order for a ring that needed a bit of sorting out. To be honest, rings are never straightforward because of the sizing issues, but at least this was one of my adjustable oak leaf designs, so that was fairly easy – once I’d converted a French ring size into diameter in mm.

The main issue was the finish. The customer wanted a ring made in brass, but without the highly polished finish of the example in my online shop. Brass does lose its shine anyway over time if you leave it untreated, so it’s just a question of speeding up a natural process. For silver or copper, I’d use a hard boiled egg to achieve this, as described in this post from August last year, but the egg trick doesn’t work on brass. And I don’t have any liver of sulphur, which would also do the job. What to do?

Luckily, it was the internet to the rescue. A quick online search, and it turns out that suspending the brass object over vinegar in a sealed jar is all that’s needed. It works too. Here’s the polished ring, before treatment.

And here it is after being dangled over some white vinegar for 24 hours.

It certainly took the bright yellow shine off, softening it to a more mellow bronze tone, and also gave the surface a slightly mottled antique appearance. I’m not sure which version I prefer, but the customer was definitely happier with the matte finish, and that’s the main thing. I posted it off yesterday morning, and I hope she’ll be pleased with it when she sees the real thing rather than the photograph. Fingers crossed.

3 thoughts on “ringing the changes

  1. That ring is absolutely gorgeous, in either finish. I never knew of this trick to use white vinegar with brass for that lovely color. I’m sure your customer will love it!

  2. I like your nature jewellery very much; my personal favorites are the oak leaves and birds; but they are all lovely 🙂

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