May 4, 2015
The island province of Bali, Indonesia is known for its many forms of ornate craftwork and, above all, its superior metalwork using silver. Design houses from around the world outsource their silver needs to Bali and visitors to Bali are able to visit a silver workshop to view and even partake in the process.
Basic Silversmithing in 6 steps:
- A model or mold is created from clay or plaster; this will dictate the shape and design of the product
- Pure silver is melted by torch and sometimes copper is added to create the silver alloy.
- The alloy is poured into the molds.
- Once molded, the silver should be filed to remove and rough edges and then can be manually shaped, hammered, trimmed and imprinted with designs.
- The silver is dipped in water to cool.
- After cooling to a solid state, the silver is ready to be filed and polished to perfection. Polishing can be done by hand or often a mechanical wheel is employed to rub out any bumps or irregularities.
Silver is highly versatile, making it a continuously coveted precious metal for centuries.