Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Electroforming Adventures

Dan and I have been running as fast as we can to keep up with the tasks associated with supporting our metal etching and electroforming products. We have been updating techniques and supplies as we find new and improved ways of doing things. For the past year we have taught people how to etch and electroform in classes around the country so they will understand the finer points of how these processes work and how to implement the techniques for jewelry design. In our etching classes, we used to say “oh and by the way, you can electroform using similar technology”. Well, as soon as people heard the word electroforming it’s like you just asked them to take a physics test or something. When a few open minded event organizers posted electroforming classes, adventurous students who were not easily intimidated signed up. No one was more enlightened than me about the awesome results. People copper coated everything imaginable from old jewelry pieces to sea shells. Some of the more unusual pieces included leather, a small animal jawbone and a gecko lizard! I call it the Rumpelstiltskin effect because once a common thing is turned into shiny metal it becomes something precious. And then to top it off you can plate copper with whatever metal you choose. With gold and silver being at ridiculous prices, plating is definitely an appealing choice for jewelry making. I’m pretty excited about the buzz and enthusiasm our electroforming classes are generating. We’ve even been mentioned on Polymer Clay Daily!
Thank you Cynthia
I have been receiving quite a few email inquiries about electroforming for polymer clay. You can electroform copper over almost anything as long as it won’t dissolve or change the ph of the copper electroforming solution, so polymer clay is an excellent core material. Or if you prefer to simply embellish or surround with a copper bezel allowing the polymer to show through that is another application. Polymer does not require sealing like organic materials and it can be formed or molded into any shape you wish. It is fairly inexpensive and easy to obtain. I am very excited about the artists who are using our E3 Etch/Eform controller with polymer clay. Check out work by Cassy Muronaka

Cassy Muronaka has a multi-part series posted all about her adventures with electroforming. She shares her “happy accidents” that we can all learn from. I am grateful for her tireless experimentation because it has led to many new ideas

Janice Abarbanel’s blog is a visual and informational treat. If you scroll down the past few posts she shares various designs and also etched silver pieces. She is amazing!
I love the work they have been producing and the information they freely share is worth pouring over.


  1. Gorgeous! Electroforming is on my evergrowing list of things I want to try. Pity there aren't any classes for it around here, feels like something that'd be better to try out in a class before spending a lot of money on supplies and dabbling on my own.

  2. Sherri: I love, love, love everything about your work! And...I got the piercing and rivet setting tool you recommended. You are the bomb, girl! Look forward to seeing you soon, N

  3. What is the best kind of non baking clay to use for electroforming? Does the polymer clay have to be baked?

  4. Can you use regular Sculpy air drying clay?