Friday, 19 June 2015

The mint with the hole or is it?

Has this made you look twice.....this may look like a packet of Polo mints....but what on earth are the 2 silver ones there....

Tee hee, no I haven't won a silver polo competition, I actually made them.

Let me my silversmithing class we have had some recent  fun casting objects using the Delft clay method. I have cast all sorts of things in the past and this time I had an urge to recreate a Polo mint as I had an idea for a cool simple necklace.

Let me show you how I did it.
There are limited photos as this is a pretty dangerous process involving pouring molten silver, but I can give you the idea. First I packed Delft clay into the bottom of the mould and packed it down. I then pressed in the Polo and placed the top on. More clay was compacted on top and then I had to make various air vents seen in the photo below. The large one at the bottom is the pouring hole.
Next was the process of pouring the molten silver. This is heated in a furnace. Years ago we used to do this by hand in a crucible using a huge flame. I looked very funny in protective arm and leg gauntlets and a mask, but it is very dangerous. You have to pour the silver into pouring hole very quickly so that the silver stays liquid and runs throughout the mould. I wanted to make 2 Polos and it took me 3 pourings to get this right.

Below is what you see (if the process works) when you cool everything down and open out the mould. See how on the left the silver slightly burns the clay.
 I pulled out the silver cast, you can see below that the sprue is left behind from pouring and little tags from  the air vents which have to be sawn  off. I'm sorry about the blurry photos but I take these ones with my phone at class.
I cleaned this up and polished it up and made a second mint too,

So here is my finished necklace
It was great fun to make and yes you can guess who is getting the second silver darling daughter ;0)

My card challenge project today does have a slightly tenuous slightly link to my necklace, you know me I do like a plan...
so ...............what is a present wrapped in....yes gift wrap!
I made this gift wrap for a new baby gift for a friend's new granddaughter.

I love making my own gift wrap, when I have the time,  and I always use brown paper and stamps to do this. It's such a cheap way of doing it and it is so personal to the recipient.
I used one of my large LOTV sentiment stamps and 2 colours of ink

I then made a very simple tag with another great sentiment and some sweet baby die cuts, yes very CAS for me!
and then it was a case of some twine to finish it off
Job done ;0)

I would like to enter my tag (and gift wrap if it's allowed) into the following fun challenges;

Stamping sensations stamps.dies and punches
As you like it favourite book at the moment one of my favourite books is the one I read to my darling granddaughter Daisy.She adores the book Peepbo written by the Allberg's. It has the sweetest illustrations in it and is all about a Baby....1,2,3! My tag is inspired by this sweet board book.
Simon says stamp Wednesdays favourite technique or product I adore stamping and embossing...I still marvel at how the image comes to life as the embossing powder melts...magic!
Moving along with the the time inspired by a song there is only one song for this.....Diana Ross and the Supremes singing Baby Love.
Cute card Thursdays add a quote I love this LOTV quote.
Craft my life anything goes but no cards
That craft place anything goes
A sprinkle of imagination anything goes My product sold in their shop is Ranger Jet black archival ink (under the embossing)
Papertake weekly Oh so pretty
Addicted to stamps and more Clean and simple

I have lots of projects on the go and I hope to have some crafting time on Saturday. My garden has survived my holiday and is blooming so well. I will try to get some photos. This lovely warm weather is bringing everything on very quickly. It's the end of another week already, I love Friday evenings;I am home from work, the sun is shining and the weekend is ahead. Bliss. Thanks as always for your kind visits to me here. Enjoy your weekend,

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x


  1. Such a cool idea for a necklace and your gift wrapping looks lovely.
    Julie x

  2. Fab projects Jane. Love your polo necklace, you are brave sounds like extreme crafting to me lol.
    Claire xx

  3. Amazing creation Jane, wow you are one talented lady. Bet your Daughter loves the necklace?
    Fabulous wrapping paper too.

    Love & hugs

    Jacquie J xxx

  4. Very cool! Thanks for sharing...working on a tissue paper wrap exchange...I am using old dress patterns, rubber stamping on them, after a few swipes with watercolor, and then exchanging them for someone else's creation. Should be fun! And who doesn't love homemade wrapping paper??? Aloha

  5. Goodness I nearly rushed out there to buy a packet of polos in the hope of finding some silver ones!!
    How clever, they are brilliant!!!
    I love your gift wrap too and that is the sweetest little sentiment.
    It's pouring here this evening and so dark, it's more like the shortest day instead of the longest one! :(
    Have a great weekend my friend,
    V x

  6. amazing work Jane - great wrap ad i love that polo - brilliant x

  7. Love the neck less and love the handmade wrapping and tag. Thanks for sharing on AYLI. Carol xx

  8. You are so clever!
    I love it Jane!
    Thank You~

  9. You make me want to sign up for a jewelry class! Did I ever show you the scarab and scrimshaw necklace I made with cast gold pieces? I love what you made! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  10. What a very creative idea, thanks for joining us at ATSM

  11. Great casting my friend and love the finished polos. How sweet to have such a beautifully wrapped baby gift too, love the tag and paper.
    Have a great weekend.
    Hugs Brenda xxx

  12. Wow, I can't believe you made those silver candies for a necklace, wow!! I think this is one area of art that I will leave to the experts like you! I really love that sentiment on the baby tag, made me say awwwwww!! Have a great weekend Jane. hugs :)

  13. Really impressed with the silver polo necklace - brilliant. And I love the wrapping you made along with the simple tag. Lovely. Thanks so much for playing along with ASM this week!

  14. Wonderful tag and I love the idea for the necklace!! So fun!!

    Thank you very much for joining us this week at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog!


  15. Your polo mint pendants are just fabulous, Jane! They make such a lovely, individual necklace and a wonderful gift. Great handmade wrapping paper and sweet sentiment tag - I bet they were very well received! Hugs, Lisa x

  16. What a cool project (as well as an extremely hot one)! That's what is so fun about taking a course. You can explore processes that definitely can't be done at home!

    Enjoy your weekend!
    Jane T

  17. Fun polo mints Jane and sweet entry to or challenge, many thanks for joining in at Stamping Sensations.

    B x

  18. Wow, love those mints and the fab paper and tag

    Thanks for joining us at Stamping Sensations this month


  19. What a cool piece of jewelry you have created, Jane,

    Makes such a wonderful necklace, I love the idea (and the finished piece too!), you are so clever! And to make your own, unique wrapping... priceless.

    Wishing you happy crafting days!


  20. Made me look twice!! What a great project and end result, Jane. Love seeing some new jewelry techniques (new to me).
    Enjoy your unique charm and Happy late June to you and your family.
    Anne and all xx

  21. You're freaking awesome!!!! I'm smiling like a idiot over here with pure awe and amazement. Coolest gift EVER!

  22. Gorgeous pendants, Jane. The tag is very cute: Great sentiment and I love the little embellishments in the corner. Thanks for joining us at As You Like It. Luv, Wilma

  23. Wow that's so cool. I'm very jealous. Thank you for entering the challenge at ASOI this month.

  24. I do love your jewellery posts, this looks like a great fun (if dangerous!) project. Glad the garden survived, ours is wilting in all this heat. Bxx


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Jane x