If you’ve read part one of this post (hopefully!), you’ll know that I’m currently playing The Night Circus – an on-line story and card based game by Failbetter Games based upon the book of the same name by Erin Morgenstern. (Please go and have a look at both the game and book – you won’t be disappointed!)
Well, one of the designs in the game is a key, and having read somewhere that Erin likes keys (and she has cats, so that’s a plus in my book!), I decided to make her a key pendant based upon the design in the game.
Firstly, I sketched out the key from the original illustration (see above. ©Failbetter Games) and then scaled it down to the finished size I was aiming for. The silver wires (mostly 0.8mm thick) were shaped, hammered and soldered together. The design changed as I worked. For example, the tooth of the key I made out of a single piece of wire and it looked better with a more simple pattern.
The bail was made by looping wire as if to make jump-rings but cutting off a section of three loops. The ends were sanded smooth and then the bail was threaded onto the top loop of the key and soldered so it became one ring with a ridged pattern which made for a more interesting bail than just a simple jump-ring. At this point I placed the key into the pickle pot to get rid of any fire-stain or oxidisation.
The whole key was then filed and sanded smooth ready to go into the tumbler. At this point, I decided that it still needed a little something extra and so added a claw setting in the middle so I could then add a sparkly gem later. I used a claw setting for PMC but clipped off the excess silver at the bottom (which would have been sunk into the PMC if I was using it) and sanded it smooth before soldering it. Then it was back to the pickle-pot and another quick sand/polish afterwards before it was ready for the tumbler.
Once out of the tumbler, I gave the key a last polish with cloth and a cream polish (which has some polishing rouge already in it). The last elements to be added were the purple cz gem and the purple bow (which isn’t glued or anything so can be removed if so wanted), and so it is now complete. Hopefully, Erin likes it and will let me know where I can post it to.
The dimensions of the finished piece are: 6cm/2½” long and 3cm/1⅛” wide.
100% Sterling Silver (marked .925)