Sunday, September 23, 2012

Where the Blog Posts Continue

My further adventures in jewelry-making are continued on my other blog:

Monday, January 18, 2010

Enameling Experimentation and First Attempts at Fusing Fine Silver

Enameling Experimentation

So, I wanted to spend a few minutes playing around with enamels.

I took a charm I’d made out of bronze clay.

First I enameled the back (for strength).

Then I put black enamel into the channels on half of the charm.

And here’s what it looked like after my first firing.

Then I added enamel (powdered glass) to the other side of the charm.

And fired it.

Here’s the finished product (after I polished the bronze back up).

I’m not impressed with the charm, but I was experimenting so I’m cool with it. And now I have some ideas for things I can work on.

First Attempts at Fusing Fine Silver

These were very unsuccessful. As I mentioned in my other blog, I had to use a torch with more power than the Blazer micro-torch.

But it’s going to take some finesse and practice for me have better skill at fusing. This…

Was my first jumpring attempt. A section of the ring just balled up, separating from the rest of the ring.

This makes me think I was aiming the flame (not pin point, unfortunately) NOT at the seam.

I tried fusing a jumpring four times… it finally worked the forth time.

But then I wanted to make a really fat ball-end headpin.

It’s here on the left, 14g.

I’m going to keep it as a memento… along with a bead I’ve been saving (it’s an Alex bead).

That’s it for now.

This weekend I also made a lot of jewelry out of components I’d already made or had. It’s more of my attempt to use what I have rather than buying more.

I’ll let you know when I get the listings started.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Enameling and Upcycling

I tried some enameling this week.

My son questioned the fact that I'm breaking the law (defacing coins), so I investigated a little and found this:

Section 331 of Title 18 of the United States code provides criminal penalties for anyone who fraudulently alters, defaces, mutilates impairs, diminishes, falsifies, scales, or lightens any of the coins coined at the Mints of the United States. This statute means that you may be violating the law if you change the appearance of the coin and fraudulently represent it to be other than the altered coin that it is. As a matter of policy, the Mint does not promote coloring, plating or altering U.S. coinage: however, there are no sanctions against such activity absent fraudulent intent.

I think I'm okay. :-) And it's a great way of upcycling, IMO. For those who don't know, I often use pennies as a base for my enameling (see photo below).

Anyway, I may get some more colors (of enamel powder), but I definitely also need to work on technique. Heh… What I produced last night leaves me unimpressed.

I do have one bracelet I like and will list soon…

And I have a set of four (in black and red) but they are only one-hold punched so I'll have to turn that into a necklace.

But speaking of bracelets, I do wonder how hardy these are for people like me who run their bracelets into walls, doorjambs, furniture, etc while being worn. More testing will be required.

I have some cloisonné wire and might try working with that this weekend. One of the things I want to do is make more defined lines between colors.

I also need to organize a bit more so I know what some of the products I already have actually are. I know, that sounds terrible. It IS terrible. Sigh…

The cabinets were a great start… I need to get a photo and show you. Hopefully I'll have some time this weekend to get to more organizing.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Finishing Up Old Projects and Clearing Out Inventory in a Most Fun Way

In an attempt to use up what I have before bringing in new stuff, I am going through my drawer (and it’s a big drawer) of WIP (aka Works in Progress). Y’know… things I started and for some reason never finished.

Some of them excite me: “Oh man, I forgot all about that… that is such a cool (fill in the blank). I can’t wait to finish it.”

While others are: “Wow, I have no motivation to finish that… wonder if I should give it away (speak up now if you wanna see the list of things I’m willing to give away) or if that would just be an embarrassment to my reputation.”

Anyway, there was one pair of earrings that are probably something along the lines of “only a mother could love”, but BEING that mother (as it were)… I do like them. :-) So I am trying to finish them (they needed a coating of polyurethane) and will list them. What the heck. Maybe there’s someone else out there with similar taste to mine.

I’ll show you them when I get a photo… right now still waiting for coat #1 to dry… ugh!

I’m having a big sale on the website right now. Six pieces are already gone. Here are some that are left (wait until you see the prices… you won’t believe your eyes). Keep in mind, the Lampwork you see in our creations is never mass-produced imports. They are all fully annealed and cleaned, lovingly made glass art by people we know and trust.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

My First Torched Enamel Pieces

Had a fabulous class today. Torch Enameling by Steven James.

Here’s what I made in this half day class:

Considering this is the first time I've used enamels like this, I think the results are okay. This is a skill I plan to continue working on to improve. I really like it.

Learned a lot this weekend that will help me in my attempt to minimalize by studio set-up as well as continue in a greener direction with everything. I’ll touch on these things in future posts.

On Nov 13th's blog post, Melanie-Pearl commented: L.O.V.E. the colors! WOW!!!!!!!!!!! you know what's funny about that riveted jump ring---i just paid $100 for link-lock jump rings yesterday. i'm going to use them on some custom orders i'm putting together. i figured the expense was worth it because i don't won't to be repairing these orders for life. (they have enamelling on them so i don't want to solder them shut.) i can hardly imagine setting a hundred tiny rivets in tiny jump rings. did you need a microscope? :)

Ha! Thanks for the compliment, Melanie. I, too, love the colors, but I don’t think I can sell any of these creations until I do a LOT of testing… the first thing we were told in class is that these colors are temporary. Hmph! They won’t FADE, but they will eventually WEAR. I want to define “eventually” a little more… and I want to test out a variety of coatings in an attempt to make the longevity of the jewelry a bit more.

Wow… that’s a lot of link-locks you bought, but they sure look like they’d come in handy. I hope you bought them at somewhere like OttoFrei ‘cause I just saw some somewhere else for $4.55 each. Eek!

Too funny about the microscope. :-) It wasn’t as dreadful to do as it looks. The jumpring is actually 19mm, so it’s pretty big. I might try making a few for a more industrial-type necklace. We’ll see.

BTW, I love the rings in your blog today. You rock!


Friday, November 13, 2009

What I made in color and patina class

Had a “Color and Patina” class at B.A.B.E. today. Here’s what I made…

That last thing is a cold-riveted jumpring (which I liked so much I’m using it as a pinky ring!).

Tomorrow is torch enameling.

I have more to talk about regarding green and stuff… but right now I’m exhausted and heading to bed.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Some new listings using old beads

Thanks Tina, for posting a comment about the size of photos on monitors!

Okay, let's see… what green things have I done lately? I haven't done too much of anything, green or not, because hockey has occupied me for many days in a row. But I should have some time this weekend to work on more projects.

And I have a package from Thompson Enamel at the leasing office… hope I remember to pick it up after my walk home (I'll be listening to the Sharks game on the radio). I don't really remember what I ordered, but I'm sure it will be fun. I also need to find my actual enamels.

Well, at least I got the "Large Handcrafted Bronze Textured Earrings" listed.

And then drawing from my bead stash, here are other new listings...

Faceted Amethyst and Citrine Large Beads Necklace with Sterling Silver

Turquoise and Sterling Silver One of a Kind Necklace

Bracelet of SRA Boro Lampwork Beads in Green with Blue Accents and Swarovski Crystals

Bold SRA Lampwork Glass Art Beads Bracelet in Red and Black with Bali Sterling Silver

And I got started on the listings for my new idea.

Oh, here are two large silver beads I made… they are sub-par so I'm keeping the bracelet for myself, but I do plan to try this some more. I like big beads.

Okay, I'll be back later with more updates of green stuff. TTYL!