Men get the short end of the stick, they say. They don’t have the range and they don’t have the choice.
I decided to created a men’s range of jewellery but wanted something new and exciting. My husband has always appreciated finely crafted pattern-welded knives and I decided to create a limited edition range based on this superb, but super tough, material.
Damascus or pattern-welded steel is created like the historic samurai sword blades, by folding different types of steel into one bar.
This Men’s Stainless Steel Jewellery range incorporates some of the finest swedish damasteel to create individual and unique pieces. As the pattern is dictated by the exposing of the different layers of steel, no to are alike. The material is incredibly tough to work and needle files become almost a consumable item. There is also a lot of finishing so it’s never a quick piece to make.
The basic process of creating a damascus pendant:
- Source the Swedish damasteel
- Create the designs and mark them up on the flat stock
- Cut out each pendant and file into shape – this is hard on the little needle files used and it doesn’t take long before we have to retire them
- Sand each piece by hand, working from 400 grit down in stages to 1200 grit
- Polish to a mirror finish
- Rub down with acetone
- Acid etch to reveal the pattern – the type of acid used and the length of the etch has a marked effect on how deep the pattern is. This pattern is quite bold and can be felt by running your fingers over the pendant.
- Sand and polish again
- Heat treatment brings up the hardness and improves stain resistance
- Add a bale for hanging on leather, silver or rubber
- Polish again to improve the highlights
The process is very labour intensive and you essentially have to finish the same piece of jewellery twice.
- Each piece of jewellery is truly unique
- The pendant is stainless and very durable
- They are great on a silver chain or a leather thong. We have also put them on rubber thongs and these look great.
- They can be dulled down for a more grungy look or mirror polished on the ridges
- They are very tactile and the pattern can be felt with your fingers
I like to think of these pieces as having fingerprints of their own. Of the limited editions made so far, several of them have been ‘released into the wild’, several of them have been poached by my husband who wears one daily.
They are low maintenance and striking pieces but take so time and effort to make that I haven’t made all that many. I still have a couple in stock but probably will only be making more as special orders.