Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Audreys Earrings

These earrings were made for my daughter's best friend. Audrey has provided food, shelter and adventure to her unemployed self all summer. That's a great friend!

I'm so glad we know you Audrey, you're a treasure! We're lucky to have you!!

They are made of chrysophrase and sterling silver.



Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Behind the Scenes

I want this blog to be about some of the trials and frustrations of my wire work. I have often wished I could have a behind the scenes peak at the work of some great wire artists. Usually I just get to see finished work that is stunning and beautifully completed as if it all came together for them effortlessly.

I work in a very solo and isolated way. Living in LA there are plenty of wire work classes and bead shops around, but the prices for these classes are astronomical. And if you purchase supplies from these shops you will pay more than double what you would pay on the internet for the same supplies. At this point, most of the classes offered would be too easy for me anyway.

So my work is done in a solo setting where I don't get a chance to see other people throw their pliers down or rewrap multiples times, or see what their 'failed project' box might look like or if they even have one.

Though I do my actual 'work' solo, if it were not for books and the internet I would not be where I am today. If not for Sharylin Millers "Bead on a Wire', I never would have had the courage to make this trip. Lynne Merchants tassels shown in "All Wired Up" are like a carrot on a stick to keep me going during hard times. Eni Okens fresh ideas opened up possibilites and her affordable tutorials and generosity helped me to think outside the box. Iza Malczyks eye popping designs set a bench mark for excellence that makes me try harder to wrap neatly and meet a higher standard.

Without these poeple I would not be where I am today. It would be something to see what goes on in their work areas. I am afraid everything does just comes together for them effortlessly!! ROFL - but... in my workshop/studio/errr... livingroom floor it looks more like this:

Working on a pair of earrings here. The first picture shows one earring that is on its second wrap. Still the wire isn't flowing but stumbling all over it's self.




The second picture finally gets it right. I'm very happy with the flow of wire here. Now I have to rewrap the first earring again, that will be the third time that earring gets wrapped as I tried to figure out how to make this work!




As of right now, I am not loving the spiral part of the design as much as I thought I would. It's looking like an after thought and unbalanced. Not sure what I will do about that.

I'm looking forward to oxidizing them soon!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Another 'morning coffee' necklace. This one has a large vintage chandelier crystal as the center piece. The upper half of the chandelier crystal is on the left hand side of the necklace.

The whole effect of this necklace was what I was trying to achieve with the failed "Sampler" design. This one just happened all on it's own without me trying.

I'm loving this double wrap coil and this color combination of silver and copper - I've already started another project in a similar vein.

This post is also a test to see if my pictures are brighter and not so dark as they have been.









Saturday, July 11, 2009

Oops!!

I promised myself I would NOT make any jewelry today since I am behind on chores and responsibilities:((

Cat woke me up early and I fiddled with the coil in the below necklace while I drank my morning coffee. Than the fiddling turned in to real effort as a gorgeous necklace emerged.

I think this is the best copper sterling combo I have ever done and the matte sapphire stones look yummy with the rustic look of the wire.

Stones are more blue in color but once again my photo work makes them look black:(





I'm trying to be grateful that I have a full life rather than sorry for myself that I have no time to pursue this wire work as I please. Some days contentment wins, some days - 'sorry for myself' wins. I'm sure glad I got to create this beauty this morning!!

Monday, July 6, 2009

ReWrap

I decided to make another set of heart earrings since a friend immediately wanted to have a pair. These are the second set, wrapped more carefully due to task lighting and a magnifying glass, and also with more forethought gained from experience


I've been wanting to make these for quite some time. They are going in my Etsy shop but I might make another pair for myself I love them!
I never guessed that my work would mature this rapidly. This is just from one month of sustained effort, and also 5 days of vacation. I really need to fit some excerize into my life though!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!!

I seem to have my holidays mixed up!! This is how I spent my Fourth of July!



A James Bond marathon and one 'Marley and Me' movie later we have the 'The Hearts'.

I'm thrilled with this design but they won't go up for sale because I feel the wrapping could have been done so much better. The wrapping technique failed due to some inexperience and also due to poor eye sight. I will have to go buy one of those large magnifying glass/lights if I continue to work this small. Which I suspect I will.

The size of the heart is only 1 1/8 " across. They look freakin' great on!!

It is also the first time I wire wrapped chain into the design and I'm liking that alot. It was less fiddly and easier to manage the chain than I thought it would be.

At a later date I may rewrap them again but after 15 hours of looking at them I need a break! I learned alot though and I'm loving the criss cross caging technique which I just came up with this week solely from necessity:)

The stones and coloring of the piece are quite wonderful, red sapphires, moonstone, labradorite, garnet and micro pearls.

I'm pretty excited about this last week being a big step forward for me in design and skill! I only hope I can keep it up;)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not

I'm working on a necklace right now that I like to call 'The Sampler', named after the old embroidery samplers girls made 100 years ago to show off different types of stitches. The Sampler has been on my design 'to do' list for more than a year.

It's like setting out on a great Trek, climbing a mountain, crossing an ocean and one can't know for sure whether they will reach their destination. You just set out with all the fortitude you can muster.

But as so often happens to me in the middle of a project I am hit with sudden despair and certainty that I will hate it, that it will look stupid and this whole affair was a bad idea from the start and I have made a terrible mistake. Than I don't even want to bother finishing it.
I know this about myself, so to combat that I have to discipline myself to finish what I started. I reassure myself that not every design can be a mountain top experience, but I must finish what was started.

This powerful urge to quit happened to me when I made the peruvian opal ring shown in my blog. I really like the finished ring and was surprised how nice it turned out!

The Sampler necklace is meant to be made up of vintage brown art glass beads, vintage carnelian ( I think it's carnelian, it was never labeled) and some new agate I have on hand. It was always my plan that these particular vintage beads would go into one piece together. What threw me was that the carnelian stones are 1" in diameter and make a bulky necklace. That is a style I am not used to. I like my necklaces a bit more petite than that.

So than I decided my idea was ruined and I needed to turn this into 2 or 3 downsized necklaces. Now I am back to the idea of one longer necklace than I had in mind.

Will the Angsty Artist love it or hate it? Will it be one necklace or more than one? Stay tuned to find out....