Copper leaves

carol23_gwOctober 20, 2005

Scott Arboretum offered a Copper Leaf workshop. Copper roofing material, tin snips, a file, hammer, chisel is used. I plan on having the ginkgo welded on a brass rod for my garden. The others are smaller and can be hung from a tree or trellis. I'm trying to think of other leaf patterns to make! Any suggestions?

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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

You made these? Impressive! How about a Mimosa leaf ;) More realistically, a palm frond might be a good challenge. Would an English Holly be possible?

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 2:27PM
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rosemariero(Z9 SW SUNDiegoCA)

Those are excellent, Carol! Very nice work you've done!

How about a smaller version of Acanthus mollis?
~R

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 3:08PM
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carol23_gw

Thank you, Shrubs_n_bulbs and Rosemarie. Oh, if you every take a workshop on these, be sure to use earplugs since everyone is hammering at once.

Acanthus mollis would be interesting! I'll check into the Ilex, too. The more veins in a leaf, the better it turns out.

While searching the net for ideas I came across two leaves. What are they?
http://www.twosmiths.ca/media/Work%20Images/Vertical/leaf.jpg

These look interesting, too!

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 3:52PM
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rosemariero(Z9 SW SUNDiegoCA)

The 1st thought I had on the 1st leaf was Water Lily. Maybe it's something else--but that was my 1st impression. Don't know on the other.

~R

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 5:16PM
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rosemariero(Z9 SW SUNDiegoCA)

I found an example of a leaf like that 1st one...see link below.

I imagine it WOULD be a good idea to wear earplugs! LOL

~R

Here is a link that might be useful: Lily leaf & flower

    Bookmark   October 20, 2005 at 6:35PM
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carol23_gw

Rosemarie, that does look similar. I wonder if the artist may have exaggerated the lobing?
The second leaf could be a figment of someone's imagination! Remember a post asking for identification of a flower used in an old print?It seemed like a combination of traits of a few flowers.

I've found an Acanthus photo and will give it a try.
A friend just had copper roofing completed and the roofer left me some material : - )))))) I'll look for an English Ilex pattern.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   October 21, 2005 at 11:28AM
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joanmn

Not only are the leaves beautiful, but your picture of them is great, too.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2005 at 3:13PM
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Nushka_IA(4b IA)

Those are lovely! The leaf that looks like a water lily might also be Sagittaria latifolia. For another possibility, what about bloodroot?

    Bookmark   October 27, 2005 at 5:29PM
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stimpy926

That must have been fun Carol! How about trying a fiddle-leaf-fig leaf?

    Bookmark   October 28, 2005 at 10:41AM
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echoes_or(Zone 3)

How about rhubarb leaves. They have such cool leaves...

    Bookmark   October 29, 2005 at 5:36PM
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carol23_gw

Oh, thank you for the suggestions! I love them all.
Bloodroot has such an usual leaf. Rhubarb and the fiddle leaf fig would be interesting, too.
I've made a new leaf and will post it to see if anyone can identify it!

    Bookmark   October 31, 2005 at 7:13PM
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carol23_gw

Here's the leaf. The real leaf has a much longer and very narrow petiole but it wouldn't be practical to make it that way. It's not a common tree in my zone 6 area.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2005 at 7:38PM
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katsu(z5IL)

These are just exquisite! Wish I had the patience and talent to create something so beautiful.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 12:10AM
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carol23_gw

Thank you for the compliment. I took a suggestion and cut and hammered out a bloodroot leaf. The edges were a challenge. This was from old discarded copper roofing material so it's not so shiny like the other leaves.

I need Rosemarie to draw me an Acanthus leaf to trace!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 3:05PM
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rosemariero(Z9 SW SUNDiegoCA)

You did GOOD on the Bloodroot!

The other is great as well, but I still haven't figured out what it is, Carol! Acer rubrum has toothed leaves right? I don't even know if they are in your area or not though. Platanus occidentalis is toothed & not cordate. It doesn't seem truncate enough for Liriodendron tulipfera. I give up! :D I keep getting interrupted in my research! :P

I'll see if I can get over to my sister's (around the corner) & sketch an Acanthus leaf to e-mail you!

~Rosemarie

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 4:33PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

The leaf sure looks like Acer rubrum with a fat petiole, but surely there are plenty of those around. Did you not bother to make the leaf edges serrate???

So maybe a different Acer, maybe a Sycamore?

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 6:11AM
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carol23_gw

Shrubs_n_bulbs, it's not an Acer. The leaf is probably atypical since after searching through Google images I found most leaves a bit different. However, I traced the leaf myself after picking it up in a friend's garden.
It's in the family Sterculiaceae.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 6:44AM
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carol23_gw

Here's the comparison between the leaf I traced and an Acer rubrum leaf.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 7:23AM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

A Chinese Parasol tree? It wouldn't be hardy would it?

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 9:44AM
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carol23_gw

YES! Firmiana simplex. Charles Cresson in Swarthmore PA has one that is probably 20 years old. The bark has quite a green cast to it. Hummingbirds seem highly attracted to the flowers.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 10:24AM
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enchantedplace

How wonderful that you are making such beautiful duplicates of leaves. How are you planning to display your work? It is truly a work of art. EP

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 11:54AM
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enchantedplace

On reviewing I see you had already mentioned your intentions for use, but your leaves would also make a beautiful artistic display and are very beautiful against the background of the first photo. EP

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 12:00PM
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enchantedplace

I am doing scans of fallen leaves in our environment if you wish to use any for patterns. Will be adding little by little. link below. EP

Here is a link that might be useful: scans

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 1:28PM
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sarasmiles(6 MI)

Hi Carol, I am dazzled! These are wonderful, and the more patina the better. I would love a short outline of the directions and the gauge of the copper sheeting. Could you please oblige?

Thanks for posting, Sara

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 3:46PM
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Nushka_IA(4b IA)

Beautiful! I just moved to a part of the country where bloodroot is native and I've fallen in love.

A technical question (following on Sara's): could one size them down, like for jewelry?

Something I'm going to try in the spring is using a rhubarb leaf as a mold for a small concrete birdbath. By then I hope to have a digital camera!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 4:17PM
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cheerpeople

I like!
Karen

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 5:28PM
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carol23_gw

I'm happy you enjoyed them!
The copper is roofing material. I think it comes in one thickness. The best tool is jewelers snips, tin snips with curved tips so you can navigate around the leaf margin. I use a Sharpie to mark out the pattern edge and the leaf veins. Cutting is difficult and you need to wear gloves.
A ball hammer is used, a file for the sharp edges - go in one direction only with the file. I have a small chisel which I use to delineate the leaf veins. I hammer the chisel all along the lines I've drawn for the veins.
After that I turn over the leaf, hammer between the veins( no chisel). There's a French word for this puffing up but I cannot recall it. I go back and forth on both sides if the veins get compressed. You can also make the edges so they are not flat.
I would think you could make jewelery but it could depend on how small a size you want. That may require special jewelers tools.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 5:40PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

"repousse"

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 6:03PM
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carol23_gw

Thank you, snb!

Here's a photo of the basics. I've cut out a few new leaves but not done the hammering. I'll search for the jeweler's snips as I had to give them back to their owner.
I've posted a site that shows the same snips as I used.
they were curved with a spring and are marked Snips No Ears.
Two more comments - wear earplugs while hammering.
Use acetone, nailpolish remover to erase the Sharpie marker lines after the hammering is finished.

Here is a link that might be useful: snips no ears

    Bookmark   November 2, 2005 at 6:27PM
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sarasmiles(6 MI)

Hi Carol,
Way too cool! Thanks so much for the directions and the extra photos. Keep up the beautiful work.

Sara

    Bookmark   November 4, 2005 at 3:44PM
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carol23_gw

Thank you Sara. I just finished the grape leaf yesterday.

Enchantedplace, thank you for the leaf scans. I've made a sugar maple leaf pattern but haven't cut it out yet.

I like the rhubarb idea, too, and think a birdbath of that shape would enhance any garden!

    Bookmark   November 4, 2005 at 3:55PM
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enchantedplace

carol...All the leaves are beautiful and I printed off your instructions and some of the pictures. I can highlight the text I want to save and copy and paste it to our documents program. I can right click on the picture we want to print and print it out. Then, I can trim the information and pictures and scotch tape them together, and If I want to, later, I can scan it to share. If that is not OK with you please advise. I don't know if we will ever try doing it but it is very special information to keep. EP

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 11:59AM
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carol23_gw

EP, feel free to copy and save anything I post!

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 1:25PM
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shrubs_n_bulbs(z8/9 UK)

I think the grape is the best yet.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 6:38PM
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arbo_retum(z5 ,WinchstrMA)

carol, what a fabulous new talent you're showing! i can't wait to read through all this and learn about doing it. I have a suggestion for these leaves that you might enjoy and i can photograph it for you BUT I NEED TO BUY MY OWN digital camera first! will you contact me about yours? (did you rcve my email about this before?)
best, mindy

    Bookmark   November 30, 2005 at 11:13AM
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Nushka_IA(4b IA)

I agree with shrubs n bulbs: the grape is especially gorgeous.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2005 at 4:35PM
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