Mistress Prudence stepped up to her Peerage at 12th night this year (AS L). She asked me to make her some pins for her volunteers– she wanted hat pins with little heraldic roses on them.
Hat pins. Now there was an interesting idea. I hadn’t ever done anything quite like that.
Well, ok, I’m game for something new. She bought some pins from Shipwreck Beads and sent them over. They were steel, about 4″ and had a little circle on the end. I found them kind of flimsy but I bashed them on my wee jeweler’s anvil and “work hardened” them. I hope it was enough.
I spent an hour or two sketching out those heraldic roses, trying to figure out how the curves laid into the fifths of the circle. I got used to the pattern and carved one into the soapstone.
Yeah ok. That looks all right.
Then the back of the mold broke. It wasn’t in a major spot, just a little bit off the sprue, but it made it hard to cast. I tried Maddy’s suggestion of “gasket sealant” from the auto supply store. I didn’t like my results, probably my fault. I had a hard time keeping the plane of the rock flat, so the mold was kind of “bad” at this point. Note to self: usually patching the rock doesn’t work. That’s both the plumbers putty and this stuff that you’ve been less than satisfied with. Don’t break the molds.
I wanted to disguise the circle a little (Dafne was encouraging me to make it a 2 sided mold), so I started by putting slips (leaves?) on the backs of the roses, so they’d show. You know when you look at the heraldic rose, it’s got those little leaves. Anyway, they came out nicely.
But Prudence felt (probably rightly so) that if she had the backs very ornate, then she would feel obligated to paint them (she wanted to paint the roses on the fronts). So I spun the mold block around and made little starburst shapes on the backs. This allowed me to not worry about that break in the back piece. I did redrill and reset the registration pins though.
This is what she wound up with. I snipped off the flash and ran a cursory file around them, but she really wanted them painted. Since I had some family issues (and Christmas), I sent them off to her visiting her father. His Excellency Finn Grimm did a better job filing them, and then gave her the filings in a little jar “to keep close to her heart.” (awwww)
She seemed very happy with them, all told. I learned some important things- make sure to file the flash when it’s for “a client.” And I got to play with adding the little disk onto a pin.
Oh these heads are pretty small. I got 50 out of half of a pound of pewter. They’re smaller than a quarter.