[Northkeep] [Fwd: "Stunning" Viking Necklace in Ireland]
Kahn at West-Point.org
Sat May 1 11:11:12 PDT 2010
willowdewisp at juno.com wrote:
>What do they mean "wrapped in gold foil"
I believe that means the goldsmith pounded or rolled gold until it was
paper thin or thinner, then the gold was affixed to the beads. The
latter may have been accomplished using an adhesive (probably) or by
heating the glass beads so they were close to melting point of gold
(just a wild guess on my part). The result is golden beads without the
expense of beads of gold. Gold is more malleable than aluminum, so if
you've ever seen how well you can make aluminum foil take on the details
of a coin or something like that, it's easy to understand how gold foil
could be used to cover a round object.
It sounds similar to gold leaf work. Gold leaf has been used for at
least 200 years, probably much longer, for decorative effect. Gold leaf
is gold that is thinner than tissue paper. A thin layer of adhesive is
applied to the surface, and then a soft-bristled brush is used - very
carefully - to apply the gold leaf to the adhesive. Well-executed, the
result is striking. Gold leaf is almost unbelievably thin and you can
blow it into shreds, so gold leaf work is best left for skilled people
with very steady hands. But gold leaf would be too fragile to stand up
the the wear of beads worn as jewelry.
More information about the Northkeep