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If you love the Sonoran Desert, you’ll love capturing its beauty in silver metal clay using organic materials found in and around the Tucson area such as prickly pear and cholla skeletons and mesquite beans. Choose from an assortment of desert materials and create a pair of earrings, pendant, or charm. Lyle Rayfield will teach you to use a 2-part mix to capture the impression of your selected sample and recreate its shape in silver clay. You will also learn how a simple butane torch can fire your pieces, so that you can continue to use organic materials to make interesting jewelry at home without a kiln.

Microscopic particles of pure silver are combined with an organic binder to produce the clay-like substance known as silver metal clay. When fired at high temperatures, the binder burns off and the metal particles fuse into a solid piece of silver. No experience is necessary, and all skill levels are welcome. Demonstrations and instruction will cover how to properly roll, texture, shape, refine, fire, and finish metal clay creations. All materials are supplied; magnifying lenses (if needed) and an apron are optional.