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damascus steel jewelry

 

About the metal:

Damascus Steel has origins in Middle Eastern sword-making from 1100 to 1700 AD. It may be that the swords were indeed forged in Damascus. My metal is created by pattern welding, a sword-making technique used in Europe and Japan. The metal in these swords is referred to as Damascus Steel. Viking swords, Japanese katana and Indonesian kris were all made using pattern welding techniques.

victoria forgingPattern welding is a mechanical process wherein strips of metal are laid up together, heated, forged together, folded, then reheated, forged, folded, and so on, again and again. Patterns appear in the metal and vary according to what the smith does to the layered metal. Patterning techniques include carving, drilling, twisting and then flattening of the layered bar.

I make each billet of Damascus steel with alternating layers of steel, iron, nickel, and, sometimes, tool steel. I have developed a unique pattern that I am using throughout this body of work. The movement of the patterned line within each forged piece is important to the development of each shape. Gold and diamonds highlight the movement of the line.

About Victoria:

My childhood was full of making little things and always carrying some project with me to work on. I still do this, always with some object in progress. It is easy for me to define myself as a maker and builder of things. I received a BA in sculpture from the University of Maryland in 1991, and an MFA concentrating in metalsmithing from Rochester Institute of Technology's School for American Craft in 1996. After graduate school, I began my business with utensils and vessels made of the patterned metal that I still work. Now I feel drawn to the intimacy of the little forms of which jewelry is made, and a structural freedom in working on this scale in relation to the human form. Working with this uniquely patterned steel coupled with radiating gold has been genuinely exciting. I enjoy the closeness I feel with each piece that comes from my studio, the complete creation of metal that I have made.