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This is likely the last time Susan Zeiss will teach this class before she retires

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Mitsuro-hikime: A Wax Technique for Casting

Sunday, May 5, 2024
10:00 am- 5:00 pm

$170 includes $20 materials

Instructor Susan Zeiss




Course description: Mitsuro Hikime: honey (mitsu) wax (ro) drawing (hiki) texture (me). Japanese in origin, mitsuro-hikime is a pliable sculpting wax which folds and stretches like pulled taffy developing a unique linear texture which is very recognizable. A pioneer in the rediscovery of this ancient Japanese technique, Susan will show you tricks and tips on how to best work with this wax to develop the texture and form it into uniquely fluid forms. Most effective in simple designs, mitsuro-hikime will bend, and curl, giving fantastic surface detail and a wonderfully fluid design in your wax models. (suitable for lost-wax casting***). Susan will share her recommendations for spruing and casting. You will also learn Susan's trademarked formula for mitsuro-hikime and participate in making a batch of the wax during the class. The wax batch from class will be divided up for students to take home.

****These waxes can then be cast into silver, bronze or gold using the lost-wax casting method. 

NOTE: this class will not cover the lost wax casting process, only wax modeling with Mitsuro - HIkime.****

Materials included ($20 collected with tuition):

Mitsuro wax to work with during class, plus some extra (aprox. 65 grams) to bring home after class

Materials for students to bring:

small tupperware style water tight container to transport waxes after class

scotch tape

Optional to bring (a few are availble to share at the studio):

painter's masking tape

x-acto knife

hot wax pen

wax modeling ring mandrel on a stand

Prerequisite: This class is best suited to people who do their own casting, the wax models are very brittle and difficult to ship without breaking.

Minimum: six students minimum, maximum nine students





At Tacoma Metal Arts Center we now sell bulk pieces of Mitsuro Hikime Wax for jewelry makers.

This wax is a sculpting wax for Mitsuro Hikime style jewelry making. When warmed it pulls like taffy and creates a beautiful ribbon effect that translates beautifully into gold and silver jewelry through the lost wax casting method. Formulated, trademarked and produced by Susan Zeiss, a pioneer in this technique and an instructor in our teaching studio, Tacoma Metal Arts Center.

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The bulk pieces can be cut into smaller pieces.
10 grams is enough to make roughly 3 rings or 1 bracelet. This is a single large piece that can be broken up, cut, or re-melted into smaller pieces. To cut into smaller pieces: heat the wax under a heat source, such as an incandescent light bulb. Once softened it can be cut with a damp knife. The knife must be damp with cold water to prevent the wax from sticking to it.

About the maker:
Susan Zeiss is an award winning jewelry artist who works out of her studio in the Pacific Northwest. Her work is regularly shown in juried exhibitions and galleries. She earned her master's degree in metal arts from the University of Wisconsin. During her time as college jewelry faculty, she spent many years researching Mitsuro Hikime and through much trial and error she created her trademarked recipe of Mitsuro Hikime wax. Now semi-retired she wants to share her recipe with other makers in the hopes that the technique will live on. Makers may not represent the formula as their own, and credit can be given as the Zeiss formula.

Examples of jewelry in silver and gold made by Susan Zeiss

mitsuro hikime ring sue zeissmitsuro hikime wax susan zeiss



mitsuro jewelry