Bee-themed embossed aluminium artwork, made by Theresa

Metal Embossing Q & A

Answering questions from students

Thanks to the Covid-19 lockdown in New Zealand, I have a bit more time to go into depth when answering my students’ questions, and I have loved creating some Q & A videos for them.

Question 1: Smoothing the surface around engraved lettering

Our first question came from Theresa (Florida, USA). She created a beautiful aluminium artwork, featuring a gorgeous honeycomb with some high relief bees and flowers.

Aluminium Bee & honeycomb artwork made by Theresa (USA)
Made by Theresa Lockhard Bishop (Florida, USA)

Theresa asked how she could smooth the area around the words, and I created this video to explain my approach to engraved lettering. I also demonstrate how to use a few sheets of paper, a piece of cardboard, and a cleaning cloth to create different depths of engraving.

One of my personal strategies when embossing a piece is to always start from the centre of your design and work your out since the metal stretches as we emboss it. What happens when we start from the outer corners, is that by the time you get to the centre, the bit in the middle might be very bumpy. This might prove tricky to fix and smooth out properly, without the metal creasing.

Anyway, you can check out my full answer and tutorial here:

Question 2: Which filler to use for high relief tin wraps

The next question came from Pauline (Tauranga, New Zealand).

Pauline created a beautiful aluminium wrap to go around a tin, featuring cute little geese. Her question related to which filling would be the best to use when creating high relief designs that you intend to mount onto a concave surface.

Pauline tried using glue as a filler, as she was worried about using beeswax as a filler. She was afraid the beeswax would crack when mounting it onto the round surface of the tin. Unfortunately, the glue ran out, leaving the geese with little or no support.

I answer Pauline’s question in this video:

Question 3: Getting copper mounted onto wood smoothly

Our last question for the week came from Theresa.

Theresa created this striking little copper birdhouse.

Theresa’s question:

Here is what Theresa posted:

“So, I thought I would try a roll of copper to try as these little birdhouses seemed to beg for it. I had in mind a bee house😊 as I love the honeycomb. What I found was that the copper, same gauge as the aluminium I have been working with is quite a bit stiffer and not as easy to work with, but I adore the colour! I am not happy with my first attempt , learning to do on the seams and making them not so obvious. Also the patina is a combination of acrylic and India ink. Not super happy with that. My adhesive didn’t hold on the edges. Think I need some copper tape for the bottom. And once again I am not happy with the lettering. I think this is going to have to be my first uh oh piece. I still love the concept though. 😊”

I answer Theresa’s question in this video:

Progress over perfection!

I am so proud of these students of mine! I love the fact that they are expanding their skills, trying new projects and not letting perfection stand in their way! I think their projects are amazing! And as I always say:

If you have questions, please comment below and I’ll try my best to answer them as soon as possible.

Metal Embossing Freebies, Courses & supplies

If you haven’t grabbed your FREE Basic Metal Embossing Techniques Cheat sheet yet, please do so here.

PS. If you need any metal embossing tools or supplies, please visit our online shop at

3 thoughts on “Metal Embossing Q & A”

  1. Hi Ninette,

    Another try to reach you.

    I am from the Netherlands and viseted a view times your website.
    I tried to sign in.
    but as I klicked
    a round red boarded sign with a diagonal stroke showed up and …
    No mail was sent.

    I also mailed you :
    From: Self
    Subject: question
    Date sent: Tue, 18 Aug 2020 21:52:45 +0200
    I do not know if you received it.

    I am also curious what you have in your shop but also there I did not get what I expected.
    Just headlines but no possibilities to klick on.
    Can you please help me out?

    Kind regards

    Astrid Scholten

  2. Hi Astrid, so sorry you’re having trouble receiving my emails.

    I replied to your email on Wednesday 19 August, and resent you the Basic Techniques and Supplies document on the same day. Did you check your spam/junk or promotions folders in your inbox? Sometimes the emails end up there by mistake.

    Do you have an alternative email address that I can try to send it to?

    Kind regards

  3. Hi Ninette,
    I just saw your answer. Luckily there is nothing wrong and so I can reach you. I didn’t receive anything from you. I also looked at spam/junkmail but there was nothing there. It would be nice if I could sign in. I would also like to browse your store because here in the Netherlands is nothing to find for working with aluminium. In the mean time I have searched and found materials to use, but maybe I can still find what I can use in your store.
    My e-mal
    hopefully we can reach each other now
    Kind regards,

Comments are closed.

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