Leather, Rubber & Sterling Silver
I've recently started to experiment with incorporating leather and rubber into my work. I love the contrast between metal and the materials. I also am learning the art of anticlastic forming (think Pringles potato chip or a saddle). which I am incorporating into my work.
I just finished the hoops earrings pictured to the right. They are formed from a lighter weight sterling silver sheet but you don't sacrifice the integrity of the structure because you work harden the metal when you form the shape by hammering. You get a bold look that is very light weight and extremely comfortable to wear. The channels are filled with black rubber providing a great contrast of colors.
I plan to keep experimenting with both rubber and leather in my designs and post here.
The drusy stones in the photo have magnets that are set on the back. This allows you to achieve multiple looks with one piece of jewelry. You can wear it as a brooch or you can also attach it to a base 48" base metal chain that's included with purchase for multiple looks., You can wrap the chain around your neck, wrist, waist or as body jewelry and secure with the magnetic drusy clasp. The clasp can be used to hold a scarf in place without harming the fabric. Multiple looks but doesn't take up much space when traveling.
The center ring (pictured) features a hidden magnet which lets you switch out the setting (shown with magnetic hematite beads) This ring is in my personal collection. I will be posting more photos to show the versatility of these designs. . Please be aware that you must be very carfeul when handling any magnets, They are extremely strong and can pinch fingers. Pay attention when handling magnets in areas that children and animals have access to and keep out of their reach. Can be extremely dangerous if swallowed. I know you know this but I just had to say it out loud!
Wood & Metal Designs
I've been experimenting with a new medium...wood. I'm not exactly sure where I am heading with wood but I'm having a good time finding out.
These are some of the designs I've made. I sawed out the shapes of the rings and then refined with hand sanding. Sterling silver & gold-filled wire inlay creates a pattern in the face of the rings. Some of the finished rings have sterling silver domes and a single drilled Turquoise bead (not featured in photo). The reflection in the silver from the Turquoise gives the illusion of enameling.
The lower left side photo shows my most recent pendant. It's a guillotine made from maple wood and sterling silver that has moving parts. The blade moves up and down and the head support slides up.
More designs can be seen on the Wood & Metal page.
I've recently started to weave with very thin gauge wire. The only tool you need is a dowel, I prefer using a wood one. By continuously making loops around the dowel you begin to form a hollow tube. Once the tube is at the desired length you then draw the tube through a wooden drawplate (shown at right). This process of pulling the wire through the drawplate compresses the tube and forms the chain. You pull (draw) the chain through smaller and smaller holes until you have the diameter you want. It can be a time consuming process but I find it very calming.
It's been about 50 years since I picked up a Crochet needle but I decided to revisit this technique with wire instead of yarn. Working with the wire is a bit challenging but I am slowly getting the hang of it and picking up speed. I plan on posting designs as they are completed.
I just finished these sterling silver sun motif cuff links. Designing for men is a new direction for me. The only time I have made men's jewelry has been at friends requests. Each of them had a particular design in their head and asked if I could create it. So together we custom designed what they were looking for. Since I enjoyed that process I decided to see where designing men's jewelry may lead.
Recently I decided to create some earrings using brass. I went with brass because it gives the appearance of yellow gold metal. I was shooting for an over the top design when I created these earrings. I wanted something that looked a little dangerous and cutting edge (no pun intended). The earrings were created from sheets of jeweler’s brass. I drew the forms I wanted, then pierced them out with my jeweler’s saw and soldered the pieces together. I went with a tumbled matte finish on the brass because I think it highlights the shape and gives it a more expensive looking finish than a shiny texture would have.