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Sculpted, etched, stitched

Here it is, the two-inch wide copper cuff. This thing is so badass it’ll win your arguments with the mere suggestion of being backhanded. It started innocuously enough as a strip of sheet metal. I freehanded the swirly background and etched it. The keyhole centerpiece was carved from copper clay and added to the sheet after it was drilled out and pounded into shape. I can’t wear base metals, so I attached the leather backing and wrapped the sides of the sheet with it so the copper wouldn’t come into contact with skin. Finally, I stitched the edges of the sheet and the leather with sterling wire. It’s more decorative than structural, but I wanted a little silver flash and contrast. What do you think? Would you wear something like this?

Edit: Already such great suggestions! On the next one, the leather edge will be pared down and folded under, the silver wire will be thicker, and I’ll etch the pattern deeper. I’ll see what it looks like with brown leather, too. Trial and error and new bladed tools, hooray!

Contest Entry

If you would, please send me good energy and wishes for my entry into the Rings and Things design contest. I had been wanting to experiment with multicolor Viking knit chain, and this is my first effort, in silver, copper, and bronze. It was kind of a bear to get started with so many wires, as opposed to the ONE wire to keep track of with the more familiar Viking knit technique, but I’m hoping that it’ll be easier next time! I think it works well as a backdrop for the lion head pendant in copper clay. The back is three strands of poppy jasper, amber, burgundy pearls, copper, and pewter beads. At any rate, I’m very pleased with how it turned out and hope that it gets noticed among all the fantastic entries they receive. 🙂

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Alternatives

If you haven’t heard, the price of silver keeps climbing. I’m thinking of casting pewter (lead free, of course) as an alternative. I’ve worn it and it doesn’t react to acidic me, but what about you? Have you worn pewter? I’ll still be working in silver, but this may make work more easily accessible to all budgets. I was at the Scottish Highland Games this past weekend and noted that browsers seemed to be attracted to price point as much as anything else, and silver plate seemed to be selling quite well, so the heirloom quality of a precious metal piece of jewelry was perhaps not so much a factor in decision to take a trinket home. The experiments may well begin here.

Superchunk

I’m thinking 2″ to 3″ wide copper cuffs, etched, soldered filigree wire work, riveted objects, drilled holes, stitched with silver and lined with leather to protect reactive skin. They’re going to be fabulous.

Hot off the bench block

I really have a range of things to show you today! There are three new leather cuffs. The third one is 1-1/2 inches wide.

I have some earrings with the most adorable owls.

I liked them so much, I made them available as individual charms to wear, also.

The major piece I’ve been working on for a while now is the Glentaisie necklace. It’s a stunner. It’s a Wedgewood Agate and faceted smoky quartz and LOTS of sterling in chainmaille and Viking knit chain. It looks fabulous at the collarbones with an open neckline but has an extension chain if you’d rather wear it over a sweater or the like. I definitely intend to make another one with different stones, maybe with colored niobium rings in the chainmaille.

And with that, I’m heading back to the shop to play with my new wax pen and make new pretties…

No room at the faire

I’ve been applying to Ren Faires in addition to art shows and the like because I think my jewels would be a fitting addition, but I appear to be running into the same issue. The vendor spots have been filled for years, and unless someone drops out, there’s no room for anyone new. It reminds me of buying a house in southern California during a hot real estate market. There simply weren’t houses for sale unless someone died. I think I make interesting sparkly things. I want to show off what I do. I get good traffic at the shows and on the website afterward and positive feedback. People would rather see things in person to pick it up, feel the weight of it, try it on. But where do I go from here when the physical market seems packed, even when those same vendors tell me that sales are not as good as they expect?

Rawr.

I do love doing custom work. 🙂