Jewelry with an Organic Style

Jewelry with an Organic Style

Whats been going on?

posted by LjB on , , , , , , ,


Well it has been a while since my last post, I am basically taking advantage of this time at home to work, work, work, in my studio. I haven't returned to my day job, things are slow, so I am really spending every minute I can in my studio, because when I go back to work my studio time will be cut in half. Therefore,  I am either making jewelry, trying out new designs, techniques, or trying to improve my photo skills.

Of course I ended up making another cold connected copper ring. There is a saying here in Italy "Non c'e due senza tre" which means there is no two without three, I had made two, so I most definitely needed to make the third. I have mentioned before that I always like to use cold connections, because they can both add a decorative detail or help in the fabrication of the piece. However, I always had problems with using cold connections on small pieces because sometimes the rivet hammer does not fit. This ring is a perfect example because the rivet hammer does not fit in the inner part of the ring. Now, I know you can mushroom out one end of the wire rivet, then put the wire through the hole and then mushroom out the other end. Well, this never worked for me, I tried many things and every time I flared out one end first of the rivet, the wire bent and would not go through the hole of the piece I was working on. I also like the mushroom end of the wire to be big, and when I tried, it would not mushroom out enough and would be too flush with the hole, which of course made me nervous.

Well there were some washers lying around and I got an idea. These washers were about the size of a quater and I drilled a hole that corresponded to the wire gauge I was working with. Working with a piece of wire about 3 or 4 inches long, I put the wire through the hole I just drilled in the washer. The longer end of the wire, I then put in my vice, the washer was flat on the top of the vice, and 1 or 2 mm of wire was sticking out through the hole. I then started to tap around the top of the wire to mushroom it out, well it came out perfect.  The vice held the wire so it did not bend or move, and the flat surface of the washer also helped to create a nice round little mushroom.  Then I put  the wire through the hole in the ring, obviously without the washer and cut off the excess wire on the other side, and mushroomed out the other end.

I also created some pieces using the stones found on the beaches here when my sister was visiting. I love these stones, they are so smooth and I particularly like the white and tan colors, I think they go well with copper. Here I also used cold connections, the stone pendants are simple and casual, great for every day. With the necklace in the center, I also added some enamel, a blue green which reminded me of the color of the Adriatic sea. The little silver ball inserted in the stone is my favorite detail. I drilled a hole in the stone, a very little one, and not all the way through. Then I balled up some silver with my torch, placed it in the hole, and like setting a rivet, lightly tap the ball to make it flare out. It can be fussy, and if it is not a hard stone, it might break as you are hammering, but it is worth it because it adds a little extra touch.

And of course many earrings, a girl can never have to many, the earrings with the leaves are my favorite. I have been trying  to make some leaves  for some time, and I was never pleased how they came out. They just didn't look like leaves, and into the scrap pile they went. These however I like, I used a form folding technique  to create the middle line and used my pliers to tweak the sides of the leaves. Then into the liver of sulfur they went to give them that warm earthy style.

As you can see, I have been busy, busy, busy, and I am just loving it. Nothing is better than waking up in the morning, getting some warm coffee and heading to my studio to make and create what ever my heart desires.


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