Friday, October 18, 2013

Experimental Rock

     Oh, the wide world of geology-related puns. It shall never cease to amuse me. 

     The reason I made that joke at the risk of infuriating pun-haters everywhere is because this whole shebang I'm about to tell you about was pretty much just an experiment. You see, I didn't have anything else to do, and I had recently found a rock that I'd been holding on to since last fall (I'd shoved it in the pocket of a jacket and forgotten about it). So I figured I'd just kind of play around with it and see where I ended up. Here's the rock in question, and what I did with it. 

     If I recall correctly I picked this up while walking the dogs at the park. It caught my eye because it had a nice glint in the sun and was already pretty flat on two sides. To start out, I took the Dremel to it to smooth and flatten all the edges, then shine it up a bit. Just for fun, here's a shot of one of the sides where I've done one half and not the other. It's satisfying in the same way as powerwashing something really dirty.

     When I got done smoothing everything out, I was left with this.

     I put that in gif form for you because I had a feeling in photos this was going to look like...well, a beige rock. I wanted you to get a sense of the pretty natural sheen and depth. I dunno, maybe I'm just really into rocks. If nothing else, it shows off what I did here, which was just to smooth everything out and bring out the natural shape of the rock, because that's my personal preference (remember how I like my things to look like they were crafted by an ancient artisan and only recently excavated?).

     Anyway, next I decided I wanted to add some glitz. First I tried taping off the two large flat surfaces and spray painting the sides with my favorite gold spray paint (the Krylon kind). 

     It was alright, and I didn't hate it. But then Amanda suggested I gold leaf the sides (she had some that she'd received in a monthly nail art box -- of course -- that she wasn't ever going to use). Go big or go home, right? That's what I loved about this experiment: if it succeeds, awesome, I get to look like the coolest witch in the coven with some weirdo homemade rock jewelry; if not, hey, it's a rock. Throw it back outside.

     Here's what's cooking once the gold leaf was applied.

      Much better! To actually turn this into a piece of jewelry, I just spun some little loopies into some gold wire and wrapped it around. I wanted to hold it in place permanently with a dab of epoxy, because I like to be sure of these things, but then I decided I liked how glossy the epoxy made everything, so I dunked the whole damn thing in there. Just went for it. Then proceeded to glue my hands to EEEEVERYTHING. It sucked. But this turned out to be a pretty pendant!

     So this guy will not be getting chucked back outside! I love a happy ending. 

     And the happy ending to this post is a nice before and after shot to remind you how far we've come (and for convenient Pinteresting purposes. Yeah, hi all you readers coming from Pinterest! Welcome, come in, sit down, have a lemonade, don't let the dog drool on you).

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