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L7 Square Brooch

I am such a lover of movies. This brooch was named after a scene from The Sandlot, anyone guess which part? L7 is also a killer ladies band! No matter where this cleverly-named brooch came from, the design will feature a dive into riveting techniques, and sewing with wire. Get on and have a blast!

SUPPLIES

  • 20-gauge copper sheet
  • 18-gauge brass sheet
  • 1.63mm or 1⁄16” OD (outside diameter) thin-wall copper tubing
  • 3 1⁄2” 16-gauge copper wire
  • 6” 24-gauge copper wire
  • #51 drill bit
  • #54 drill bit
  • Drill or Flex shaft
  • Riveting Setup
  • Liver of Sulfur Setup
  • Snips
  • Roundnose pliers
  • Sandpaper
  • Fine-tip Sharpie marker

INSTRUCTIONS

L7 Square Brooch Photo A
Photo A
1. Cut the copper sheet into 11⁄2" x 2" rectangle. Cut the brass sheet into 11⁄4" x 1⁄2" rectangle. Round all corners with fine file.  (PHOTO A)
L7 Square Brooch Photo B
Photo B
2. Set the copper on a steel block and with the back of the chasing hammer, texture the edges and corners of the piece. (PHOTO B)
L7 Square Brooch Photo C
Photo C
3. Repeat with the brass, but use the back of the riveting hammer. This will add a nice contrast in textures. (PHOTO C)

4. Sand all areas of both the copper and brass, including the edges, corners, fronts and backs.
L7 Square Brooch Photo D
Photo D
5. With a Sharpie, mark each end of the brass in the center and about 1⁄2" from the edges; then center punch the marks. I’m not one who cares if things are too straight, so you don’t need to measure these marks (unless you want to). Make them your own. (PHOTO D) 

6. Drill one end with #54 drill bit and the other with #51 drill bit. Sand away any excess metal.
L7 Square Brooch Photo E
Photo E

7. Align the brass rectangle on top of the copper rectangle in the center, with the smaller hole at the top. Mark the copper sheet through both of the brass drill holes with a Sharpie. Take care to keep things nice and still. This is a time to make sure the holes on the brass sheet match up PERFECTLY with the copper marks. If not, this will cause problems with your rivets. Take your time and line it up! (PHOTO E)

 

8. Center punch the marks, then drill the top hole with #54 drill bit and the bottom mark with #51 drill bit. Sand away any excess metal from drilling.

L7 Square Brooch Photo F
Photo F

9. Wire-rivet the top hole with 18-gauge copper wire. Then rivet the bottom hole with the copper tubing. 


10.
Sand the rivets nice and smooth and use steel wool for a final polish. 


11.
Find the center at the top of the copper base plate. Mark it with a center punch just below the hammer marks (about 1⁄4"). Then make another centerpunch mark to each side. You should have three center-punch marks in a row, about 1⁄4" apart. Drill them with an #54-gauge drill bit.


12.
Oxidize the entire piece with Liver of Sulfur and brush it with steel wool.  (PHOTO F)

 
Tip!
To help prevent hammer marks, I put masking tape over the rivets.
L7 Square Brooch Photo G
Photo G
13. Cut a 3" long 16-gauge wire and grab it at 11⁄4" with the base of the roundnose pliers. Bend the wires round the pliers creating a closed loop. Lightly hammer the loop and the extended wires on the steel block with the chasing hammer.  (PHOTO G)
L7 Square Brooch Photo H
Photo H
14. With a fine file, shape the small extended wire to a sharp tip. Start about half way down the wire and slowly file a tapered point. Finish with sandpaper. (PHOTO H)
L7 Square Brooch Photo I
Photo I
15. Bend the longer end with roundnose pliers to create a half loop. (PHOTO I)
L7 Square Brooch Photo J
Photo J
16. Now bend this wire to 90 degrees so the opened loop will catch the sharp tip of the wire, creating a pin. You’ve now created your very own safety pin, great job! (PHOTO J)

17. Cut a 6" long piece of 24-gauge wire. Oxidize this and your safety pin with Liver of Sulfur. Brush them clean with steel wool.
 
L7 Square Brooch Photo K
Photo K
18. Thread the 24-gauge wire in the first hole of the copper rectangle, working from the back towards the front, leaving about an inch of the wire sticking out the back. Thread the wire into the pin loop and then through the middle hole. Thread back through the pin loop, and repeat this with the last hole. (PHOTO K)
L7 Square Brooch Photo L
Photo L

19. Wrap the long wire end around the backside of the three-looped threaded wires. Make sure the wire is snug, then snip the end of the wire leaving enough to be tucked into the wrap. Repeat with the other loose wire. (PHOTO L)

 

20. And you're finished! Your wire-wrapped bail on the back of your brooch is almost as pretty as the front.

If you enjoy this project, and Casey's unique style, by sure to sign up for Free Form, an exclusive series of projects, videos and techniques by artist and adventurer Casey Sheppard. This content is available only to our Facet: Metal & Wire newsletter subscribers. It's delivered FREE to your inbox every two weeks.

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