New Tutorial on the Way: Dragonfly Pendant

It’s a new year! I’ve been threatening for some time now to create some new tutorials so I’ve decided to follow up and make it happen for 2014. Having had many requests for a tutorial for my dragonfly pendant, which incidentally can be adapted to make darling earrings as well, I’ve decided to make that my first new tutorial of 2014. To thank my loyal followers, and new alike, I have decided to give away three copies of the finished tutorial. All that is required is that you follow my blog and leave a comment below. Over 1,000 of you are already halfway there! Thank you for following my blog and subjecting yourself to my ramblings and brag posts. 🙂

dragonfly pendant tut

Of course it is my hope that I will garner a few new followers with this promotion, so I encourage you to share this post through any form of social media of your choice. Mind you, this is not a requirement to qualify for the give away. Just a polite request. Thank you in advance to all who take the time to do so. I’m hoping to have the tut finished by next week. I will have one of my children draw randomly from all the participants to determine the winner. The drawing will take place upon completion of the tutorial so get in before it gets done!


My Six Ton Jewelry Press has Arrived!

I’ve been coveting the Potter USA and Bonny Doon presses for some time. The problem is that both are out of the price range of my humble studio at the moment, but I found the economical answer to my prayers. 🙂 This is the six ton jewelery press from It’s much more affordable running just under $300 (compared to $500 to $1000 or more) and it covers all of the basics needed in my little studio. See the video below:

FREE Mother’s Day Workshop, May 4th

Simple Forged Earrings


FREE Workshop for ages 12 and up!


When: May 4th

Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Location: Blue Morning Gallery at the NEW LOCATION: 21 South Palafox Street in Pensacola, FL.  Approximately 1/4 block south of Garden Street next to New York Nicks and the Global Grill.  Call 429-9100 for directions.

Cost: FREE!

     I don’t care who you are, you’re never too old to make something for your
mom to let her know that you love and appreciate her on her special day!  Ages
twelve and up are invited to take advantage of this free workshop to create a
pair of hand forged earrings for Mother’s Day.  No prior jewelry making
experience is necessary.  Beginners welcomed.  Please note: Materials are
provided.  While there is no instruction fee for this class a small materials
fee of $5 will be payable at the workshop. 
    Seats are limited so please be sure to call ahead and reserve you seat
today!  This is necessary so that the instructor has enough materials on hand
for all participants.  
     Delia will take you through a few simple forging techniques using a hammer
and steel bench block.  You will shape, forge texture and patina a pair of
copper earrings to be gifted to your mother on her special day! 

    This workshop is being held during evening hours to make it more convenient for both school aged children and adults to attend.  
      Please note:  Preregistration is REQUIRED.   Reserve your seat by sending an R.S.V.P. email to or calling Blue Morning Gallery at 429-9100 today.   If you reserve a seat and are unable to make it, please give a courtesy call to cancel so that we can open that space up to another participant.

Free Metal Etching Tutorial – Happy New Year!

Remember I said there would be a catch when it came to this freebie tutorial? Here it is – If you are not already a subscriber of my blog, now’s the time to take the plunge! I ask that you subscribe yourself and share this blog with as many friends as you think appropriate. That may be just one person, it may be a group of people such as in one of your favorite frequented jewelry forums. Share it on facebook, or twitter, or myspace. Share it with as many people as you like! Please, just SHARE it! If you like it then please subscribe to my blog. I promise not to flood you with nonsense. Just lots of short show and tells, tips for other artist, the occasional guest author and maybe once in a blue moon you’ll find an interview of another artist whom I admire. It won’t hurt. I promise. 🙂 Of course I cannot force you to subscribe, and I’ll share the free tutorial with you anyway, but I hope that you will seriously consider becoming a subscriber.
I also request that those of you who experiment with the metal etching technique share some of your results via pictures. I would love to see what you’re doing with it. Now of course I cannot force you to share your pictures with me either, but I am hoping to have a good response to this request. I hope to get enough pics in to share a few of YOUR experiments as a follow up to this free tutorial. Now, on to the tutorial!

After all the great feedback on my etched metal projects and many exclamations of ‘I want to do that too!’ from my friends and students I decided to make a simple tutorial to share. It’s not going to be heavily involved by any means. My usual style in tutorial writing is to show a picture of every stage. In this case I have skipped a few pictures to make this short and concise. Nothing that’s really necessary, mind you. For example, I don’t really think you need a picture of me scrubbing a copper sheet with a green scrubby pad to know how to do it yourself. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions after reading the tutorial. I am always happy to help and don’t mind being bugged at all. Getting questions and comments helps to reassure me that people are actually making use of that which I have labored (however lightly) to bring to you. Feel free to ask questions and make comments here on the blog as you might ask a question or offer an insight that my other readers will appreciate as well.

For this project you will need:
22 ga or 24 gauge copper sheet metal
Sharpie markers (I use a fine point and a fat point)
Rubber Gloves for protection
Safety goggles
Clear packing tape
A glass or Tupperware container large enough to fit your project in (NO METAL BOWLS!)
Liver of Sulfur
Green scrubby pad
0000 grade steel wool (hardware store)
PCB Etching Solution from Radio Shack (or mix your own)
A fine file and fine grade sandpaper (hardware store)
A pair of metal snips
Steel bench block
Hammer and anvil

I recommend that you read through the tutorial fully before attempting the project.

If you cannot get the PCB etch at a local Radio Shack you can make your own etching solution. Go to your local hardware store and pick up some Muratic Acid. You’ll find it in the pool care section for under five bucks. Pick up a bottle of hydrogen peroxide from your local drug store and you’re ready to mix! The recipe is two parts hydrogen peroxide to one part Muratic Acid. (Please note: If you mix your own solution it’s best to do it outside or in a well ventilated area. This etchant will release some fumes that you don’t want to breathe in.) Add the hydrogen peroxide to your container first, then slowly pour in the muratic acid. Do not pour it in too fast or it might bubble and spit – not a good thing when working with acids. This is one of the reasons that I recommend safety goggles. It is also a good idea not to wear any garments you’re overly fond of as a tiny little splash of acid will eat holes in your clothing. Please read the precautions on your containers and use common sense when working with chemicals.

Let’s get started:Okay, so now we have all the necessary supplies and we’re ready to play with metal etching! The first thing you’ll need to do is use your sharpie markers to draw a design on the copper sheet. It can be anything you’d like. Here is a picture of my design drawn on the copper sheet.

Now you will use the clear packing tape to suspend your project face down in your etching bath. You’ll do this by putting the tape across the back of your design. You need to either be sure that there are no bubble or runs in the tape or cover the back of your piece thoroughly with resist. You can either color the back with your sharpie markers or paint it with some old red nail polish (if you use nail polish you will need acetone to remove it after the fact). It’s hard to see the tape in this picture, but it’s face up with the copper sheet placed on top of it. The tape needs to be about 4 inches longer than your bath container is wide.

Pour approximately ¼ to a ½ inch of etchant into your bath container. If you’re using PCB etchant from Radio Shack like me, it will look like the picture. If you mixed your own, it will be a clear liquid that will turn green as it begins to etch the copper sheet. Tape your project acoss the container so that the copper plate touches the acid bath enough to fully cover the face of the design. It’s okay if the tape dips below the surface of the etchant as long as you have taken precautions to add a resist to the back of your copper sheet.

I put a lid on my container and leave it to etch for 40 minutes. I will check it every 20 minutes. If you’re using the home mixed version with muratic acid, it is likely to etch faster so check it about every five to ten minutes. It helps if you agitate the mixture by swishing it around occasionally as well. When I stop to check the depth of etch on my metal sheet, if I can feel it by rubbing my gloved finger across it I deem it ready. Extract your metal sheet from the acid bath and rinse it. DO NOT RINSE IT IN A STAINLESS STEEL SINK! IT WILL RUIN THE FINISH ON THE SINK! Rinse it outside with your garden hose if you can. Rinse it thoroughly and inspect it. This etching is ready for the next step.

Once it has been fully rinsed and all of the etchant is removed you can take it back inside to a sink and use your green scrubby pad to scrub off any and all traces of the sharpie resist to prepare it for the LOS bath.

Using a different container, heat some water in your microwave ( one to two minutes on high), add a pea sized chunk of liver of sulfur and add your copper plate to the LOS bath.

Remove the plate from the bath once it is fully oxidized. This one sat a little long and now it’s good and black. This is fine.

Now use your 0000 grade steel wool to buff off the LOS patina and highlight the raised portion of the design.

Now you will use your tin snips to cut out the different pieces. Alternately you can use a jewelers saw but I find that for small projects the snips work fine. The snips tend to curl the edges somewhat, in which case I use a steel bench block and a rawhide hammer to whack my pieces enough to flatten the curled edges.

Use the file and sand paper to soften the edges so that there are no rough or sharp spots left.

Drill or Euro Punch pliers to pierce for adding bails, jump rings, dangles, ear wires, etc. depending on your specific project. Here are some of my completed projects from my metal etching experiments.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. I appreciate any comments or feedback on this tutorial that you may have to offer.
Check out my website for more great jewelry making tutorials:
Images and text copyright 2011 Delia Stone.

Making Gemstone Soaps

I have something different to kick off the New Year with today. A fantastic free tutorial on making gemstone soaps. While I am not a soap maker I found myself drawn in with great interest as I read this article by Bonnie Bartley of and this moved me to share it with you. I really enjoyed seeing the process for making these fantastic soaps. According to Bonnie, it’s not as difficult as you might think. Have a look at Bonnie’s beautiful gemstone soaps and use her free tutorial to make your own.

Guest author Bonnie Bartley on Soap Making:
Hello friends,
I often do demonstrations at soap making conferences. One of the most popular classes is for making my gemstone soap rocks. Today’s blog post is drawn from the handout notes that I offer to soap makers who attend my presentations. Through the years, I have emailed these notes over 700 times to soapers who have requested them. Today I share them with you

Yes, these are truly easy to make. Even my very first attempts came out great, yours will, too. Here’s how!

To read more and see Bonnie’s free step by step tutorial, click here: Soap Rock Tutorial

Free Issue of Step by Step Wire Magazine.

I’m always tickled to see my work in Step by Step, including their advertisements.  I am one of the artist featured in this ad – specifically the large illustration showing the various pages for my Needle Lace Caged Pendant tutorial that was published in Step by Steps Summer 2008 issue (not to be confused with the summer preview issue in 2008).  This ad offers a free issue for those of you interested in seeing what this magazine has to offer.  Click on the link below to open the ad in your MS Word application.

Step by Step Sept 21 Ad