L is for Liver of sulfur (AtoZ 2016)

Whether you spell it sulfur or sulphur, it smells. But, I’m happy to open a window and plug my nose to get my beads oxidized!

There are so many tools that you can get when you start working with metal clay that it can seem overwhelming. One that I didn’t get right away was liver of sulfur. I figured that I would see how the beadmaking went before I invested any money into the bead finishing tools. But, after I completed my hawk skull, I knew that I needed some. Perhaps it’s just that I’m used to the oxidized beads that you buy from major bead brands, or perhaps it’s because I’m using fine silver instead of sterling silver, but the beads have an odd, almost fake, colour to them without the oxidization.

Left: Dull silver before oxidization. Right: shinier silver after oxidization

You can buy liver of sulfur in gel form (which is what I have) or dry chunks. I couldn’t find the liver of sulfur locally, so I waited until I ordered more clay and added it to my order. I chose the gel since I read that it lasted a little longer, but, either way, you end up mixing it with water to dilute it to the right strength so you use very little of it each time. In fact, you can store the diluted mixture and use it several times, so you really use so little of the concentrated liver of sulfur! At least I knew this going in, so I ordered the smallest amount that I could find. As you can see, it’s a pretty small bottle, only about the size of a playing card.

This little puppy is still going to last me for years.

Perhaps I need to step up my bead making game just to get through my liver of sulfur.

Have you ever passed on something, thinking that you could get by without it, and then realized that you really did need it?


  1. Yep this week, basic running pliers…

    They didn’t come in my fusing starter pack (I had grozing pliers) so I figured that would do… but then found I couldn’t cut the glass without them (bit of an issue for fusing).

    I mean technically after being a shown a different method in college yesterday I managed to cut something at home without them… but it will be 10 times easier and neater with them!

    Also ordered a flint sparker as being lighting my torch with matches but not the best way to do it!

    Both very cheap bits of kit, but rather essential!

    Mars xx
    @TrollbeadBlog from
    Curling Stones for Lego People

    1. Of course, I had to look up grozing pliers. And running pliers. And I’m still not sure that I could tell the difference :) But the flint sparker I know and I can see how that would be an improvement over the matches!

  2. I see what you mean – it really brings out the shape doesn’t it. Whenever I try a new thing I try it with as little as possible and then find what I need as I go. When my sister and I built our company website we started with the basics in WordPress and then added free plugins, until we found that we needed some plugins that were not free. This way be didn’t just throw money around, but we did have to spend some :).
    Tasha’s Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

    1. I usually err on the side of caution and order the smallest amount of something to try it out. Or, trying the freebies where I can :)

      Mars had the good suggestion that more places should offer samples, since that gets people over the hump, and then you stick with what you know :)

  3. I wonder why they call it liver… Hopefully not because it has any actual liver in it. I mean, sulphur already smells bad enough :D Pretty mean difference on the beads, though! Glad you got it in the end.

    Thanks for the visit over at Life In Dogs, and so sorry it’s taken me this long to visit back… April’s kicking my butt, haha.

  4. That is a good question – I hadn’t thought of why they call it liver! :D It does smell quite foul.

    This week in particular is kicking my butt with some unexpected projects coming up, so I’m a few days behind on most of my blog visits :( I plan on catching up this weekend, I hope!

    1. Me three on being behind on blog visits but being away and work are making it a tad tricky at mo. Think I’ll be having a late spurt towards the end… Once I’ve written the last posts that is!

      Mars xx

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