When aluminum first hit the commercial market in the early 1800s, it was more expensive than gold and platinum. Luxurious and sought after, aluminum was the metal of choice for the shining capstone of the Washington Monument, for framing stained glass within the Library of Congress, and for Napoleon III of France's banquet utensils for honored guests (the less notable had to make do with forks of gold).
Today, the process for making aluminum has been refined and is common in commercial applications. And it's significantly cheaper than in 1865. Aluminum has proven to be extremely valuable for its durability, corrosion resistance, and its light weight. It's used in transportation, packaging, construction, housewares, and jewelry making. Yup! Maybe not all that often, but this mighty metal has myriad uses for our industry.
Aluminum is easy to cast, making it ideal for light-weight jewelry pieces and findings. Plus, it's an abundant metal, so it's also light on the pocketbook. The metal's light-weight composition also means no added bulk to your designs. Plus, it has a bright finish, won't tarnish or oxidize, and is hypoallergenic.
Cast aluminum bracelets, clasps, bead cones, and rivets make great additions to your jewelry-making repertoire. If you want to add color, we recommend using brilliant Kliar E-Coating or Gilders Paste. Strong, versatile aluminum round wire is ideal for wire-wrapping designs.
Keep checking back for more aluminum products. Our Product Development team is furiously working on a series of aluminum components for a variety of design options. Why not make aluminum a luxurious and sought-after metal once more?
It seems to me that the line between “art” (what I see in my mind’s eye when I hear the word, anyway) and “jewelry” is the most fuzzy when it comes to cameos. Today, on The Studio, we’re featuring a few very special Signature cameos inspired by the work of artists, Alphonse Mucha and Erwin Pauly. Take a look at these stunning Signature cameos and leave us a comment for a chance to win one for your own collection!...Read the Rest
Have you been looking for a unique way to bring color to your jewelry pieces? On The Studio today, Ashli Brooke Taylor, of Rio’s Tech Support Team, demonstrates one simple way to use the Kliar E-Coating system to add a great punch of color to your jewelry. Kliar E-Coating is a type of nano-ceramic electro coating that is abrasive-resistant and hypoallergenic. Check it out!...Read the Rest
At the 2011 SNAG Conference, Phil Poirier introduced his new hammer, vise, and stakes, to rave reviews. I’m happy to tell you that barely one year later…he’s done it again! At this year’s SNAG Conference Phil brought his brand new Bonny Doon Small Forming Tools, which take the innovations of his hammer and stakes to a whole new level. Check out today’s post to learn more!...Read the Rest
For today’s post on The Studio, we asked Monica Foster, a Rio findings buyer, to pick something really special that we could feature. Monica’s task was not an easy one! It’s tricky to choose just ONE exciting new item from her line of gold and base-metal findings, because there are so many! Her selection? The Bronze Magnetic Dexterity Clasp. Easy-to-use, secure, and great looking –check it out!...Read the Rest
Looking for a unique display item to show off your wares and set you apart? Allow us to present our brand new Tranquili-Tree Metal Combination Display! Today, The Studio is featuring this heavy-duty metal display made by a metal artist here in Albuquerque. Take a look!...Read the Rest
We’re constantly adding new items at riogrande.com, and I asked each of Rio’s Product Managers to pick something new (or relatively new) to share with you on The Studio. Come on over to see their picks!...Read the Rest
Rio Grande’s product managers shop the world to bring you the most exciting new stuff out there. I asked each of them (there are five) to give me a product they’re excited about so we can share it with you. Take a look at what they chose!...Read the Rest
PMC Sterling has finally launched, and the excitement of the newest metal clay is soaring. This long asked-for addition to the PMC family, PMC Sterling is 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper. The wait is over....Read the Rest
Silver-filled products are all-new and there are plenty of questions about them. Here are a few that the rest of the Rio Technical Support team and I have fielded in recent days, based on our own use of this cool stuff!...Read the Rest