Monday, 21 March 2016

I've got maille!

Finally managed to track down some beautiful solid copper carabiner clasps. These fit in so beautifully with copper wire woven jewellery and take the patina the same way the wire does - unlike plated clasps. Mark and Stephanie at 'BeadAddict' have some wonderful bare copper findings, as well as a treasure trove of other lovely things for the jewellery maker. I could happily spend hours browsing the treasures on their website.

'Mahogany Flame'

There were some interesting challenges with this piece, involving some of the construction techniques I had learned in silversmith classes. I wanted the pendant section to have some movement to it, so I cut a tiny length of copper tubing and threaded it onto the wire that the bail sits on. This means it can swing and enables it to sit well on the neck, the tube also adds strength beneath the woven bail. Nobody will ever see it, but it's the little touches that add quality to handcrafted pieces.

I do enjoy the engineering part of jewellery making. Its one of those things you seem to get better at the more you do. There's another first for me in this design - my very first foray into the challenging world of chainmaille. It's amazing what you can do with a little heap of jump rings and some nifty moves with the pliers. OK, I know they are only little rosette links, but it's a start!

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