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How to Create a Silver Keyhole Pendant

Embellish this silver keyhole pendant with a vintage skeleton key.

Glass isn't the only medium Eleanor Macnish likes to dabble in. She is constantly experimenting with new ideas like this sterling silver keyhole pendant.

Materials and Tools:

large sterling silver disk
smaller sterling silver disk
mica sheet
vintage map
vintage skeleton key
14-gauge sterling wire
twisted wire
large diameter silver tubing for bail
clear thin packing tape
liver of sulfur in heated Crock-Pot
files and sandpaper
drill press and small drill bits
safety glasses
permanent marker
coping saw
rubber gloves
steel or brass brush
craft glue


1. Hammer around the edges of a large prefabricated silver disk to create a design.

2. Smooth the edges using a file and sandpaper.

3. Draw a keyhole shape on the small silver disk with a permanent marker, drill a hole inside the keyhole shape, thread a coping saw blade through the hole and reattach the saw blade. Saw the keyhole shape out.

4. Form the twisted wire into a keyhole shape outline, apply flux and solder the connection. Pound the wire out until it lays flat. Drop the wire into a heated pickle solution to remove the fire scale. Rinse in water and dry.

5. Solder the twisted keyhole shape to the smaller disk to outline the pierced shape. Place the piece in the pickle solution. Rinse in water and dry.

6. Cut a length of silver tube for the bail, file and smooth the ends, apply flux and solder the bail to the back upper portion of the large silver disk. Drop the piece in heated pickle solution to remove fire scale. Rinse and dry.

7. Drill four holes for rivets in the smaller prefabricated silver disk. Use a drill bit that will allow the wire to fit snugly in the hole. De-bur the holes using a drill bit that is a little larger than the holes. Sand the edges of the disk.

8. Lay the smaller silver disk on top of larger silver disk and mark the upper left hole with a permanent marker. Drill the hole.

9. Cut out a circle from the map and sandwich it between two pieces of packing tape. Cut a piece of mica using the small keyhole disk as a guide. Cut the map and mica smaller than the diameter of the drill holes.

10. Oxidize the two silver disks in liver of sulfur solution (wear gloves). Rinse well.

11. Brush the metal with a steel or brass brush until you have the desired effect.

12. Cut a length of 14-gauge wire that will protrude 1 1/2 millimeters on each side when inserted through the sandwiched pieces of silver. File the ends slightly to ensure they are level and smooth. Cut a couple of extra in case you drop one and cannot find it.

13. Line up the upper left hand corner holes and rivet by inserting the piece of cut wire and tapping a few times with a hammer. Flip the piece over and hammer a few times, repeat hammering and flipping until the metal mushrooms out flat.

14. Glue the map and mica on the bottom disk using very little craft glue. The glue is just to make it easier for you to rivet so that the map is not sliding around. When the entire piece is riveted, it will be the rivets that hold the map and mica in place.

15. Continue to drill the holes in the bottom disk and rivet one by one.

16. Figure out where the vertical center is (or the visual center) and drill a hole below the smaller disk.

17. Form the twisted wire into an oval with overlapping ends and thread it through the hole and attach the skeleton key as a charm to the silver keyhole pendent.

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