Monday, November 30, 2009
Here we have.... a peacock of course!!! This started out with a flattened fork I found in a parking lot probably back in the Spring. I knew I wanted to upcycle the fork into jewelry somehow, and this occurred. Bending the fork was quite a task - man that sucker was tough! I worked on it during one of the open studio nights at the Art Center with my teacher's advice. We annealed it twice and it still did not want to move! So, I had to be happy with what I got. There were no markings on the fork, so I don't know what it was made out of.
I cut his body and head shape out of copper, and etched the border and eye on it. I sawed the fork head off of it's handle. I knew I wanted to use several rivets, curved like a wing, to attached the fork to the body and my initial idea was to have the fork on top. Then my husband came down to the basement and suggested putting it on that back. Yeah, that looks better. He also picked up one of my little silver spacer beads and said that would look good for an eye, rather than the etched one. Thanks honey, that does look good! I tried a technique on the rivets - almost like doubling them. I first did a hollow brass tubing rivet, then I did a solid copper rivet in the middle of the holes. A pin was attached to the back and I wore this to work today! It's funny the reactions you get in the corporate world.... when you tell some people it was a fork they respond by saying "wow! cool!" and then you tell others and you can just tell they "don't get it". Like, whoa, that's just too artsy fartsy for me. Or, OMG, I would never wear an eating utensil as an accessory. LOL!
Here, I used one of my heart shaped tea strainers to make butterfly wings! I created an etched copper body to attached them to. Then I formed antennae out of silver wire and hammered it flat. Coordinating copper chain and a silver toggle clasp pull this statement necklace together. And here's an example of when I didn't take my husband's advice: he said the chain was too plain. I told him that is because I wanted the focus to be on the butterfly and since it was such a large piece already, it didn't need anything else. I am thinking of bringing this one to the Art Center to sell.
I also made some pieces that were Christmas presents, but I won't be able to show them until after they are received!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Anyway, the hours that I spend working on metal just fly by! However, it is rough on the hands, and sometimes body if you are contorting yourself in one position for too long. So for now, doing a day of it a week is just enough for me. I have learned to multi-task quite well - planning pieces I want to etch ahead of time so that they can be soaking while I assemble other things. Well, enough about all that - let's talk about these owls!!!
All of the owl heads were cut out of copper, and then etched with different features. Then, I riveted a variety of objects onto them for eyes and noses. They will have bails attached to them and will be strung on leather. I am planning on listing 2 on Etsy and then sell 2 at the Art Center's gift shop.
This first guy is similar to the first owl I completed after the class. What's different about this one is that I actually interlocked the gears this time and left the rivets loose so they will move! I have just been taking my thumbnail of my right hand and turning the right eye every chance I get! As with any mechanical object, I am starting to see wear (circles) on the copper as the gears go around. I think that is so cool and will give this piece more character as years go on!
For this next guy's eyes, I used 2 carved bone beads that I had. I really like how he turned out!
Stay tuned as I have made some other metal projects that aren't owls!
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
I am happy to report this necklace found a home today on Etsy. When I saw the address, it intrigued me so I did a little research. It is on it's way to a lady at Owl Creek Vineyard in Cobden, Illinois. I really enjoyed looking around on their website, and finding out more about their wines. The owl artwork that goes on the bottle labels would certainly make the empty bottle a collectible item for me! Next time I am going through Illinois, I might just have to make a stop at the vineyard - or at least go to one of the retailers that carries their wine!
Sunday, November 22, 2009
I know my Dad reads my blog...... thanks Dad!!!! Love you!
Friday, November 20, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Here, I used an actual twig that I drilled holes into. I wired Humblebeads cute gnome and mushroom beads onto it (the mushroom came only as a top so I made a stem for it out of polymer clay). The chain has simple Czech glass beads wired into it in even intervals.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
I guess I will start at the beginning of my design process. The first piece I picked up was a ceramic pendant from Lisa Peters ART. As soon as I saw it on Etsy last week, I snapped it right up! Isn't it funny how a particular component becomes your favorite for a while and you end up coming up with so many design ideas for it? Well, that is what has been happening with these 10 hole wood bars I recently got at Hobby Lobby. At first, I thought I would hang the pendant from the wood bar all centered and perfect. But after I looked at it awhile, I decided to do it asymmetrical with the addition of a peacock feather on one side.
Okay, so I had my focal ready to go, now I had to decide what to use for stringing it. I started to search though my beads. Nothing was really grabbing my attention. I happen to look over to my shelf of jewelry and saw a choker I had made years ago with fancy jasper and a Green Girl Studios clasp. It was a really simple design that I loved, but the more I thought about it I couldn't remember the last time I wore it. I started to wonder why I didn't wear it - did I not like chokers? Did I think my long hair hid most of the pretty beads? Hmmmmm. In the end, I decided to use it in this necklace. My original thought was to start stringing the jasper up each side of the pendant and then putting the fairy clasp off to one side. But the more I looked at it, I discovered how cool it looked to separate the fairies so that they looked like they were holding each end of the pendant! Of course, the one that has the hook does still serve as the closure. The best part about it though: I didn't have to take the necklace apart at all!
I am absolutely in love with this necklace now! It embraces everything about me and my business name: peacocks and fairies!
Oh, if you'd like to see the choker in it's before state, I blogged about it here in my very early blogging days!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
For this bracelet, I bent the filigree a bit to fit the curve of a wrist. Then I went back to the first beading technique I learned (peyote stitch) to make the strap of this cuff out of pink hex beads. I also wanted to use the end findings I've had for years, specifically made for ending flat bead work (I think they are from Designer Findings). A pink ribbon allows the closure to fit any size wrist.
These are both listed on Etsy.
Sorry, I didn't put any links to the supplies in this post - I am too tired since I also listed 2 other necklaces and 3 pairs of earrings on Etsy. Go check 'em out!
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I set up a better little metal studio in my basement since I wanted to keep it all separate from my jewelry studio. Working with metal can be loud and messy so it really wouldn't have worked with all of my delicate bead trays and such. Having an organized/designated space will prompt me to keep up with these skills.
Since my first post, I have added a few more tools to my collection: a die set that punches different size circles and a dapping set. I am looking forward to making my own bead caps now!
Sunday, November 1, 2009
I hope everyone had a great Halloween! Ours was pretty low key this year, and that was okay. But since Halloween is my favorite holiday, I really do like going all out from time to time with a really cool costume and going out somewhere. But, not this year. However, I do dress my dogs up every year - they are just too friggin' cute not to! I love them so much and they just crack me up!!!
And Mocha was a Rasta Dog!
(Both costumes courtesy of Petco!)