Chasing and Reposse’…

Recently, I worked on an etched copper piece, and wasn’t thrilled with the flat look of it,
so I’ve been looking into learning how to do some shaping of metal using chasing and reposse’ techniques.

I found a website that listed some recipes for jeweler’s pitch and being a bit hesitant to work with hot tar, found
a recipe that the author came up with that was equal parts beeswax and plaster of paris.
She states that it should work for softer metals that are fairly thin (as mine is).
So this morning I got to work on it. I was lucky enough to have both ingredients in ample supply.
I kind-of “winged it” with the measurements, and I’m hoping it works out.

I used a shallow Francoma dish that’s a bit beaten up.. I wanted to use the saucer from a terracotta flower pot, but couldn’t find one in my house that wasn’t currently in use.
I placed the dish in a cast iron pan with some water in it to create a double boiler so I wouldn’t burn the wax, and started to melt ( I mean, the wax started to melt…LOL )

And then I added in the Plaster of Paris:

Stirred it all in…( I used a wooden chopstick… no explanation why… it just felt like the right thing to do)
And now that it’s all blended in, I’ve turned off the heat, and am waiting for it to cool and harden.
I’ll let you know how it goes….

…..I’m back!
It worked! Beautifully!!
And the smell of beeswax is nice too 🙂

I pretty much suck at doing the actual hammering, but the “pitch” held up beautifully, and gave just the right amount of resistance for small detail.
Now I need to get online and buy the proper chasing tools 🙂 …..( a girl can never have enough tools)


3 comments on “Chasing and Reposse’…

  1. Angela says:

    Hi Jennifer,

    cool idea with this mix! do you think it would work also for beadcaps? And ist it possible to re-melt it again, or does the plaster also “sets” with beeswax?

    Hugs from Switzerland
    Angela (the one with the chocolate)

  2. jennifergeldard says:

    Hi Angela, I think forming bead caps would work as well.
    I haven’t tried re-melting the wax, but I think it should work…. There is no water in it, so I don’t think the plaster has set in that way. The plaster dust is really just suspended in the wax.
    I hope so anyway, because Id like to be able to re-use it.
    Hugs back,
    – Jenny ( the one that ate the chocolate ). 🙂

  3. Angela says:

    Fine, thank you! I will try that…. Need just a little more time, maybe four more hours a day? 😉 for all the creative projects…


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