Friday, June 18, 2010
I was mad one day and told a fib to my hubby that I didn't like technology. He laughed and I knew I lost whatever argument was going on. What a huge lie...I lurve technology...it is the magic that continues to fascinate beyond the everyday miracles of existence.
To that end, I just purchased a Pepe Jump Ringer from Otto Frei (they are on sale right now plus they had 5% off during their Las Vegas show, http://www.ottofrei.com/store/product.php?productid=10076) and decided to put it through some quick paces with some Celtic cage earrings.
One thing that had slowed my testing of new chainmaille designs was the need to either create jump rings or buy them. If you've priced jump rings, you know they can get quickly expensive and while I will need to continue to purchase them for things like anodized aluminum, I want to be able to make my own things out of copper and silver (sterling and argentium) as needed.
I had been using knitting needle mandrels and sawing them with a jeweler's saw which is fine for very small batches but it is...so...slow.
After some initial messing about with getting the jump ringer configured correctly (and note to Otto Frei, your instructions included with this product are *very* confusing) I whipped up enough jump rings to do one pair of these fun earrings.
So next I am tackling a Jens Pind chain and have promised hubby a helm of some sort...
Sunday, June 6, 2010
Last night at the bookstore, I thumbed through a book all about Steampunk jewelry. I think all but one of the pieces had a watch part connected to it. I even predicted to my friend Katey, I says to her, I says, "I'll betcha all of the stuff in that book has a watch part or cog on it."
So I had started a freeform copper pendant, riveted and then I made a setting for a prehnite cabochon. I wasn't sure what type of chain I wanted to have it connected to and had been thinking about chainmaille of some type. However, I'm waiting until I get a jump ringer system until I do more serious mailling just due to how tedious it is to do lots of jump rings by hand.
I had seen some different types of chains in Tim McCreight's "The Complete Metalsmith" book and thought of a variant where I took one inch lengths of 12 gauge copper wire, planished and filed the ends, drilled a hole in each end, and then connected with smaller jump rings. The chain has added charm of looking like bones!
I also made a toggle clasp to match and a simple bail for the pendant and then dipped the whole caboodle into some liver of sulfur concoction. After much work with some 0000 steel wool, I am so happy with this necklace. I can't wait to wear it a bit to show it off...perhaps with a top hat, or a steam vent...to declare this is something steampunkery without a cog or a watch part.
To the airship everyone!
Posted by Sharon Paradiso at 12:39 AM
Thursday, June 3, 2010
I've been creating...just not getting very much listed but I'm trying to reverse that during the summer especially for many of my unique pieces. This bracelet, Pearlsplosion, I'm particularly happy with not only because it swam around in my head for a looooong time before I put it together but because it starts out with minutiae and builds into one grand piece of wrist candy.
I used 8 different colors of pearls in clumps of 2 and 3 in sections over hammered, oxidized copper washers. Each pearl was wrap-looped (doubled up for strength) on handmade copper headpins. Clumps of pearls were then attached by a copper jump ring to a crossed set of bright aluminum jump rings. Those jump rings connect the larger copper washers which are all different sizes, slightly!
Just love how every piece is a bit different but it all comes together in the end, don't you think? I went through quite a few of my pearls so need to keep my eyes open for some more lovely colors -- these are all greens, blues, a touch of purple and cream/white.
View more photos on the Etsy listing and thanks for visiting!
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Ever since I borrowed a book on cold connections (metal) from my good friend and metalsmith Melissa Moloney, I've been smitten with rivets. To clarify, the kind made with wee tubing. I tried the kind with just wire and didn't care for it as much but I can see the merit of it so ya know, keep it in the skills arsenal.
For someone who claims to dislike working with small things, tiny slices of tubing aren't exactly the easiest to deal with either. I found myself putting down some paper towels under my workspace because the little bits of tubing kept running off. I need to make a sheet of double-sided tape to stick things like that during the middle of a project.
This freeform copper pendant with prehnite stone needs some polishing up and I will likely play with some oxidization with it as I really love that look with copper. Next part is the chain. Work in progress!
Posted by Sharon Paradiso at 9:13 PM