International studio — 36.1908/​1909(1909)

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TnERE are few things more inter-
esting to work in than thin sheet metai,
although there is a general impression that it is a
somewhat difhcult art. Sheet brass is so soft and
pliable that it easily iends itself to cutting, and many
beautiful and original designs can be made in the
following manner:
Lamp and candle shades give opportunity for
this decorative form of brass work, and it is not
a dilhcult problem to design and execute a metal
shade in harmony with some odd-shaped jar or
vase which we may already possess.
Very few tools are required for making pierced
or cut brass. A block of hardwood and a block
of softwood sold for ordinary repousse work can
be utilized, or even a portion of a plank can be
fastened to the table. A vise and wooden mallet,
a steel hammer and a set of nails will be required
for the shaping of the articles, while the cutting
out is done by means of a fret or scroll saw. If
the brass is very thin, it can be cut by means of
scissors, which is somewhat easier than a fret saw
for the beginner. A file will be required for
smoothing the edges, and a riveting set must also
be procured.
A beginner usually chooses a lamp or candle
shade, as they are particularly easy to construct.
To make a reading lamp it is necessary to get a
satisfactory base, and the shade must be designed
in perfect harmony with it. In making the shade
for the reading lamp, the first step is to make a
paper pattern of the shadeandexperimentwith the
different sizes and flares, so as to decide the right
proportion and flare of the shade to the lamp itself.
A shade may be made with the following meas-
urements for each side : 16 inches for the lower hori-
zontal edge, 4 inches for the top horizontal edge

and 10 inches for the depth of the shade. Before
rnaking the design, it is best to have an accurate
pattern of each side cut from stiff bristol board.
The design may then be drawn for one side of the
shade. Then make a design on drawing papcr
for one of these panels. Then draw an inner line
all round the inside and half an inch frorn the outer
edge, leaving a central space for the cut design.
The outer margin of half an inch serves as a frame
to which the design is joined with pathways of
metal, giving somewhat the effect of a stencil. In
planning a design of this kind, a great deal of at-
tention must be given to getting well-proportioned
background spaces, and all sharp points and angles
must be eliminated.
The design having been carefully planned, pro-
ceed to draw a definite outline around each open-
ing to be cut out. India ink is the best medium
for drawing these lines. The first design must
always be kept for future work, and now trace as
many panels as the lamp requires from the orig-
inal drawing. This is best done on Japanese rice
paper. The design now being complete on the
paper, we are ready for the metal. Copper or
brass may be used in any thickness in gauge be-
tween numbers 20 and 24.
For a lamp shade of copper, Nurnber 24 is
perhaps the best to work with, as it is light
in weight and yet stiff enough to hold its shape.
Lay the accurate pattern of the panel upon the
metal and mark around it with a nail. Then
cut out the hve sides, following the scratched line
with the rnetal shears. With hour paste fasten to
each panel an India-ink tracing of the design,
and when these are perfectly dry they are ready
for the sawing. Now proceed to bore one or rnore
holes through every opening with a hand drill,
placing them near but not on the line. Then pro-
ceed to cut the rnetal with the fret saw. These
usuallv measure six and seven inches in depth. An

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