Thursday, 11 August 2016

Creating soldered bezels for polymer clay

Jewellery making has been a bit slow over the last few days. Enjoying watching the Olympics and as it only comes round every four years I don't feel at all guilty. When I have been making, it's been outside in the sunshine and making good use of the workbench Mr J bought me for my 60th birthday. An unusual pressie to buy your wife I know..... but then I like to think I'm an unusual wife!

 
Got both these soldered this morning and they are ready to go to the next stage.

 
The larger one is having a centre inspired by sunflowers inside so should be truly eye catching. Not sure what colour the other one will be yet, but I'm leaning towards a marine inspired colour palette.

Must say I love my Knew Concepts saw frame. I used to struggle fiddling about with intricate piercing but I treated myself and have never looked back. I wouldn't use any other frame now. Pricey, but worth the extra money. Just look at the concentration!

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Sketches for a sunflower necklace

The last few weeks have seen me honing my wire wrapping and weaving skills. With wirework it’s all about practice, practice, and yet more practice. I really wanted to get to the stage of being able to make interlacing and weaving on a symmetrical piece, and I wanted the backs of my pieces to look neat and symmetrical too. Several pieces of jewellery with an elfin flavour later and I am pleased with my progress.

The Aubretia pendant was my first micro mosaic piece – the closest I think I have ever felt to painting a picture with jewellery making. It has gone off to a new home so I am especially happy.

Now I’m feeling like making a bold and colourful statement piece inspired by sunflowers. Here are the first very rough sketches – you don’t need to be a Van Gogh to record your ideas, doodles work fine.  It’s just helpful to be able to organise what’s in your head and play around with options regarding shapes.

 
I decided after some doodling that I wanted petals in different sizes to create a dynamic shape, and after really looking at pictures of sunflowers, I realised how beautifully textured the centres are, chocolate and purple colours lovely against the orange petals as the photo below shows.
 
 
Now I know what I am aiming at I will be able to do a more detailed watercolour before I start construction. This week’s learning curve will be all about learning some new polymer clay techniques. I will be using a clay roller to  make some colour gradations, using a technique called a ‘skinner blend’ More about all that in my next post.