Monday, June 1, 2015

New Tool equals New Learning Curve and a New Giveaway!


I have yet to meet (either in person or virtually) any jewelry designer who is not a tool hoarder.  I am one of them. But, I harbor no guilt for my obsession with buying tools. My wardrobe (if you want to call it that) consists of the same blue jeans/sweats/shorts – and t-shirts – that I have worn for at least the past 10 years. I do not buy clothes – hate it actually. We also rarely go out to dinner - just not my cup of tea.  I buy tools, instead.

If there is one thing I crave when designing, it is texture, especially in the metals. So, I recently broke down and bought a new rolling mill.  I vacillated on which model to buy and ended up with the mini version of the power house models. 

Durston Mini-Mill 80
Once I bought the mill, I knew I had to bolt it down to “something” – my bench is small and full – so I went to Home Depot and bought this little $29 table made by Black and Decker. Though this is technically a portable work bench, once the mill was bolted down to the side I thought for sure that I was in business. 
Black and Decker Workmate Portable Bench

My Rolling Mill Setup
Well, just like finding the sweet spot in the flame when soldering, there is a sweet spot in adjusting the rollers in the mill – not tight enough, and the impression (if you even get one) is barely there.  Too tight, and it won’t roll.  I had more mishaps than successes, but I was able to finally get some decent imprints when I used 18 gauge copper vs. 22 gauge.  In my various research I found that the thicker sheet takes an impression much easier than thinner sheet.  And of course, anneal the metal first, as hard metal will not take an impression at all.

Here are a few pictures of my attempts that actually worked. Thank goodness I practiced on copper. This impression is still very faint to me, but, it's there, I promise!


This next picture is not really texture - more like faint embossing.  It would make a nice back plate for a pendant, perhaps.


This last picture is my favorite - I can actually feel the impression on the copper.


One of the tips I read said to wrap the copper and the whatever one is using for the template in a few layers of paper toweling - then roll the "sandwich" through the mill.  Well, I have made several attempts with different pieces of lace, textured paper  - nothing to show there, as the impression just did not take!  I need more practice, for sure. But, I did manage to make a few toggles with the copper that DID take an impression.


I made two extras to Giveaway to one lucky winner.  These are nice and sturdy - 18 gauge copper sheet, with a tube rivet, toggle, and extra jump rings - all antiqued, tumbled, buffed, and protected by a couple of layers of Renaissance Wax.


To enter, simply leave a comment on this blog post.  If you want an extra entry, share a link to THIS blog post on Face Book - but don't forget to come back here and leave a SEPARATE comment indicating that you shared!

I will choose a winner at my next posting - June 15th!

Thanks for dropping by!

Patti




92 comments:

Sharlyn Premuda said...

I have tool envy!

Sharlyn Premuda said...

Shared too!

Sherry Reck said...

Gorgeous! I'd love to win these for my beaded bracelets!

Sherry Reck said...

I shared this on Facebook!

Yvonne, Sweden said...

Thank you very much for your tips and ideas that you share with us! I admire your work and your beautiful creations and energy. Thanks!
... I have shared a link about your blog on facebook too;)

Niky Sayers said...

Oh I so badly want to get a rolling mill and I can't wait to see all the lovely things you create Patti!

Kathy Lindemer said...

Patti-I would love to have your component to create and blog about.

Kathy Lindemer said...

Baymoondesign just tweeted this giveaway for a 2nd chance.

Mary Jane said...

Thanks for the tips and giveaway been wanting a rolling mill for awhile

Mary Jane said...

Shared!

Doug Zizzi said...

Those toggles are divine!

shelleykatsh@gmail.com said...

Thank you for the chance! Love your work.
Shelley
Shelleykatsh@gmail.com

Merrie said...

Your enthusiasm is inspiring! Love the toggle.

Ann Schroeder said...

I love reading posts like yours because I have only the most basic tools and really enjoy learning about others and how they work. Every post I read like this makes me appreciate handmade more than I already do! Your clasps are beautiful, and I would love to win! Thank you for the chance.

Ann Schroeder said...

I also shared this post on Facebook.

Deb Fortin said...

Lovely toggles . pick me please. I lust for a rolling mill *sigh*. I love textured metal and your examples make me swoon.

Barefoot Lindy said...

Oh wow! Gorgeous! I gotta get me one of those and make my own. But for now, would love to win toggles.

Deb Fortin said...

I just posted this on my Facebook page for all the public to see

Barefoot Lindy said...

I shared this on Facebook! (Lindy Grkman)

Lisa Mack said...

Sharing on Facebook too!

Melissa Abato said...

I love these clasps! Have fun with your new tool!

Melissa Abato said...

I love these clasps!

Melissa Abato said...

I shared this post

Sarah Arocha said...

Just lovely!

Sarah Arocha said...

Shared

Mary Redman said...

Your work/jewelry is beautiful. I would love to incorporate your toggle into some of my jewelry! maryredman144@gmail.com

Susan Marling said...

I am sure you are preaching to the choir here about tools!! Who doesn't love getting something new! As I have said before, I love seeing your work continue to grow. Thank you for the chance to win.

Bedecked Beads said...

Wow these are beautiful ! Would love to win

Bedecked Beads said...

Shared on my personal facebook page too 😊

Gale said...

I've wondered if buying a budget version of a rolling mill would give less than satisfactory results (as if a Durston is within my budget!), but I know you'll get the hang of it. And it's so nice to let you work through that learning curve! Anyway, the way you've curved the toggles makes the design stand out. Love the glow of the copper!

Pamela Hurlbert said...

Beautiful and shared

Denise Miller said...

Tool envy here too! Great results.

Denise Miller said...

Great results!

stacilouise said...

Oh how I love tools. a rolling mill is something I have been dreaming of too! someday

Tracy Finnley said...

At last, thank-you for showing me the way! Your creative art jewelry is beautiful & so unique, real statement pieces...love the toggles..another fabulous piece of creativeness...thank-you for sharing with us all your beautiful crafted wares on Facebook :-)

Rose said...

Great Clasps!!

Alice said...

Just gorgeous!

Joanne Davenport said...

Love the creative toggles! Just curious what is the difference between your roller tool and like a "big kick" sizzix thye tool? Will share this!

Patti Vanderbloemen said...

Hi Joanne!

Thanks! I don't have a Big Kick, but from the little I do know, you are restricted to a much thinner gauge of sheet metal.

Lynn said...

Loved your blog about the rolling mill and I love those gorgeous toggles---thanks for the opportunity to win them!

OnMyPawz said...

Wow! Beautiful clasp! Looks like you're enjoying yourself, can't wait to see what else you create!

Marlene Bauman said...

Love learning about new tools! My husband is also an artist, so as long as I find a space for them, he does not mind me learning new things and buy new tools. Love what you've done, I have an managed to get beyond the Sizzix version of impressing on metal. This is so much more cool!

PA said...

Shared the link on Facebook.

alainnjewelry said...

Awesome! I just got a rotary tool yesterday. Love new tools!

fulgorine said...

Beautiful toggles. I'd love to win!

Cindy Martin-Shaw said...

Beautiful toggles! Thanks for sharing your journey with your new tool. I've always wanted a rolling mill. Might have to break down and take the plunge.

Sherry B said...

Guilty tool hoarder! Love the clasps!

Monica said...

Che meraviglia, ti invidio molto! Purtroppo costano parecchio e al momento non me la sento di spendere tantisoldi, ma sono d'accordo con te...meglio spendere soldi in strumenti piuttosto che in vestiti o cene!

Barbara Mason said...

Another tool addict here...Try marking on the wheel where your sweet spots are for different gauges- I do use the paper toweling now -it helps to not mar the wheels!

Barbara Mason said...

Sharing!!!

Kathleen Hamilton said...

I have been wanting to get something to put texture on my copper for a while. where did you get your rolling mill? I love the texture on the toggles and the shape of the design. It is totally cool. I also hoard tools. I have two of almost everything that I have. I hoard beads too. I probably have enough
to last me a year.

Kathleen Hamilton said...

I posted the link to my facebook page.

Beverlee Stilwell said...

Love your work and your blog is so helpful. The texture you've achieved with your new mill is exquisite. It's so helpful to hear your trials of error and success.

Cheryl K Roe said...

Awesome information, I will be interested in following your progress with this much coveted tool.

SueBeads said...

I love your clasps and love how you are always experimenting with new things!

Cheryl K Roe said...

Shared the blog post on facebook.

SueBeads said...

I shared on Facebook!

june said...

WOW lucky girl !! this would be the ultimate of tools & love all that it can do.Makes a pice of copper look so amazing. One of my fave inon the wish lisyt
June

Jenni said...

They are beautiful, I have tool envy, can only dream of these rolling mills! I know you will be rolling many more lovely textures to come.

Alessandra Fryzel said...

I bought a Durston mill too, aren't they awesome? I'm sad to admit, I don't use mine enough though...so perhaps you've inspired me to try something :) Thanks!

Carol Dekle said...

Same here Patti, i'm a major tool hoarder and wear my clothes until they fall off! You will figure out the rolling mill, it just takes time and practice. Lovely toggles!

Becky Pancake said...

Fabulous Patti, I am always so impressed with your work. Congrats on the new fun tool. Thanx for the chance to win some of your lovely work.

Becky Pancake said...

Hi Patti I posted about your giveaway on facebook.

Linda A. said...

Lovely toggles and amen on the tool hoarding =)

Shaiha said...

I am just starting to play with metal so am now experiencing tool envy.

Shaiha said...

I shared on Facebook.

Kristine said...

Thanks for sharing your process! The clasps are great!

Susan Lloyd said...

shared on fb

Angi said...

I'm so jealous! A rolling mill is #1 on my wish list! Someday....!

Angi Mullis
dj2isme@aol.com

EB Bead and Metal Works, LLC said...

Patti - thanks for sharing your tips and what you found out while using the new rolling mill. I have to say that is a tool I really want to purchase. Mom bought me texture plates while I was still in school but I have never had the chance to use them yet. Maybe that might be a tool we buy this year.
Love those toggles you made!

Kathleen Lange Klik said...

I got the opportunity to use a rolling mill in a class at Bead Fest taught by Eva Sherman. It was really fun to use and required all my strength to turn! I ended up with a really cool corrugated pattern on a sheet of copper. I too love creating texture on metals and would like to some day own one...some day.

The toggles that you created are gorgeous, I especially love the riveted detail! Thanks for the giveaway-hope I win! :)

Sharyl said...

I had to come see, Patti, not only your wonderful new creations, but also your new cool tools! :-) Your metal work is always so admirable!

Leanne said...

I've been wanting a rolling mill for a while! Love the toggles!! Thanks for the chance to win.

Linda Prais said...

I always enjoy your blog and sets me off on new adventures. But I especially loved this on. I am tool crazy, my husband and I joke I married him for his shop tools and he married me for my tractor. LOL

Linda Prais said...

Hi I have shared this on my facebook, as well.

Linda Prais said...

I have set it to share on my blog Wed at 3

Debrosha said...

First time reading your blog and I love it! Can't wait to get a mill some day!

Debrosha said...

Shared your blog on facebook but i don't see my entry here.....

Kottage Kreations said...

Oh, what a fun adventure! Thanks for sharing your beautiful work, and thanks for the chance to own such beautiful creations!

Anonymous said...

I would love a rolling mill to make wonderful things like your toggle clasps. It's on my wish list!

Eugenie said...

These clasps are beautiful. I would love to use them on my jewelry.

Eugenie said...

Shared this post on Facebook

Sherri Stokey said...

Cool tools!! Your toggles are great. I'm in awe of you metal workers :)

judyklarson said...

OOOOOOOHHHHH! The Rolling Mill is next on my list to save for. There are so many things that I "NEED" it for-Ha Ha.

gloria allen said...

Your Toggles like your Jewelry look amazing. Have fun with your new tool.

Anonymous said...

I haven't a clue about half of your instructions...I am new to crafts!! I am 61 ... too late yo teach an old horse new tricks???

Anonymous said...

I have shared on my FB which is Chris Estabrook

Bobbie said...

Whooo, boy, if this is what you get through trial and error, I can only imagine the gorgeousness that's going to be coming out of that rolling mill when you really get the hang of it! Then again, sometimes the surprise that comes with trial and error is the best inspiration. Those toggles are fantastic!

DE Neilley said...

Oh my ... another tool to put on my Christmas Wish List! (My family better choose items from my list or I am going to go on the war path!!!) And another type of design element to be able to include in my work! :)

I wouldn't have thought of using thicker metal rather than thinner. Thank you for sharing that, because it seems so counter-intuitive!

Ann said...

Wow! I would love one of those tools! The clasps are beautiful!

Ann said...

I also posted to my Facebook. Thanks!

Carolyn said...

Patti,

Love your jewelry. Would love to win some of your clasps.

Carolyn
Carolynscreations@live.com

face
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