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3 Wonderful Shakudo Buttons

In Fine Jewelry > Victorian and Edwardian Jewelry > Show & Tell and Sewing > Buttons > Show & Tell.
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    Posted 8 years ago

    (103 items)

    I owned these a while ago, and to this day, regret selling them!

    Shakudo buttons, circa 1880, from left to right:

    - 5 frogs with the central two appearing to be wrestling while the others watch. Two are gold, one is silver, one is copper and the final one is blackened with gold eyes.

    - Warrior encountering a genii or troll hiding in a crevice.

    - Two noblemen with fighting cocks.

    Shakudo is an alloy composed of Copper (Cu) (93~98%) and Gold (Au) (2~7%) (Shakudo can have other metals in it, though their content is usually <1%). Its melting point is 1900°F. Shakudo is a durable metal most noted for purplish-black patina (coloration, tarnish). The color comes from the metallurgical properties, not from any use of a coloring solution (as is common in European colored metals). This property is used aesthetically for creating a contrast with inlays (most notably pure gold), primarily to decorate katanas, the swords of the Samurai. When the Japanese government outlawed the Samurai in 1876, the craftsmen who had been working these metals for many generations had to look for other outlets for their craft and jewelry as well as other accessories were made.

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    1. Peasejean55 Peasejean55, 8 years ago
      These are wonderful, I have a fan but not has detailed as these. The fan was on my forum but deleted it, I've been meaning to put it back on. The history behind Shakudo is very interesting. I'm glad you've posted them.
    2. Bluboi Bluboi, 8 years ago
      Love to see your fan Jean!

      Every time I look at these wonderful buttons I am SO sad I sold them. Will never find anything like them again....
    3. kyratango kyratango, 8 years ago
      They are wonderful! I specially love the froggies (I'm French!). At least, you still have the pics ;-)
    4. racer4four racer4four, 8 years ago
      They are fantastic...and again I have learned something new from you!
    5. Bluboi Bluboi, 8 years ago
      Yes, the froggies are the best, but the hiding trol (you can't really see the dimensionality, but he is in a rock pile) is great too.

      Racer, learning is one reason I collect, so happy to pass it on. So many interesting things!
    6. Jewels1900 Jewels1900, 8 years ago
      I have a small buckle with frogs carrying another frog in a divan chair. I used to have a fan brooch like Jean's and also a matching pair of earrings. I swapped the earrings for a Guild of Handicrafts pendant. Still pretty stoked with GoH pendant!
    7. zothhh0, 8 years ago
      All of your things are breathtaking. Do you have a store?
    8. Bluboi Bluboi, 8 years ago
      Thanks Zothho! No, I don't have a store; I mostly collect and sell things every now and then.
    9. kyratango kyratango, 7 years ago
      Hi Blueboi, I saw these frogs and thought immediately to your shakudo buttons :
    10. Bluboi Bluboi, 7 years ago
      Kyra, you are SO right! Love the ring (but not the price...) Thanks for sending the listing!
    11. kyratango kyratango, 7 years ago
      Yep... price is over the top, don't like it either :-D

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