How to Hammer Silver Jewelry

Written by alice stewart
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How to Hammer Silver Jewelry
Hammering is a basic jewellery-making skill. (Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Silver is a soft, precious metal that is commonly used to make items of jewellery, such as rings, necklaces and bracelets. Pounding a chasing hammer onto the surface of the silver creates individual patterns, designs and textures. Once you master jewellery hammering, you can use the same technique to hammer wire and other soft metals such as copper, aluminium and brass. You can purchase the tools required for this tutorial from craft stores or from online retailers.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Chasing hammer
  • Silver jewellery
  • Anvil

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place the piece of silver jewellery onto the anvil block, with the side that you wish to hammer facing up.

    How to Hammer Silver Jewelry
    An anvil will protect your work surfaces from damage. (Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)
  2. 2

    Hold the hammer in your right hand (or left hand if you are left-handed) approximately 3 inches below the head of the hammer.

    How to Hammer Silver Jewelry
    A chasing hammer has a secial ball-shaped end. (Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images)
  3. 3

    Press down on the edge of the item of jewellery with your free hand. If the piece of silver is too small to hold and hammer at the same time, you will need to use an anvil clamp. If you are hammering a ring, place it onto a long metal ring holder.

    How to Hammer Silver Jewelry
    Anvil clamps hold the silver jewellery securely in place while hammering. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)
  4. 4

    Gently tap the surface of the silver with the ball end of the chasing hammer. Start off softly and slowly; it's easy to add more dents, but you can't remove them so easily. Continue to pound on the surface of the silver until you have achieved the desired textured effect. Rotate the piece of jewellery and press down on the hammered section. Gently tap the hammer onto the flat section of the metal, using the same technique.

    How to Hammer Silver Jewelry
    The harder you hit the silver, the bigger the dents will be. (Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images)

Tips and warnings

  • Experiment pounding the silver with both sides of the hammer to create different effects.
  • Practice hammering a scrap piece of metal prior to hammering the silver jewellery item.
  • Hammered silver jewellery can be sanded and polished.
  • Be careful not to hit your fingers when hammering.

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