Wednesday, April 29, 2015 more!

Written by Patti Vanderbloemen of My Addictions Handcrafted Jewelry

I have had this ceramic focal from Karen Totten of Starry Road Studio for quite awhile now.

I have made more than several attempts to incorporate this focal into a necklace - but nothing I came up with worked for me.  Everything I tried seemed to take away from the simplicity of the beads, which by the way, I absolutely adore!  

In my last few posts, I have been incorporating silk into my necklaces.  I was sure I only had shades of purples and eggplant left in my fiber stash.  But, I don't know when I purchased this - or who it was from - but I found more!  I swear - this has to have been in my little box labeled "fibers" for at least two years the bottom.

Well, I also still had 3 of the copper bails left that I made last week... well as a stash of handmade components that I have not used yet, and these little wire connectors still remind me of a bird's nest, albeit, with a huge hole in the middle!

I think this necklace is my favorite so far - the muted tones tend to match my personality more.

And that little pop of red..yum!

Who knows...this newly located stash of silk may mean I have to make more necklaces!

Spring has sprung here - and the morning is my favorite time of day to be outside - it was a most enjoyable walk with Sarge this morning!  Hope you are having wonderful weather where you are located, as well!

Thanks so much for stopping by today - have a great Wednesday!!!


Monday, April 27, 2015

Totally new for me!

I have a new blog post up today over at the Love My Art Jewelry blog. We are in the middle of a Boot Camp and the subject is using fiber in our designs. Not exactly up my alley, but I am always willing to at least try!  I had a batch of this lovely hand-dyed silk from Marsha Neal to practice.

My first thoughts drew me to necklaces. But, what would I use as a focal? As a bail? I wanted to make my own bail and finally decided on copper sheet. Well, if there is one thing that I CANNOT do... it is drawing or sketching. I truly believe it has to do with how I hold my pen/pencil.  I blame the nuns in school- they never corrected me and to this day, I cannot read my own handwriting. So, I turned to the computer to help me draw. In my previous work-life, I wrote proposals for architects and general contractors - graphic design was critical in this work.  One of the various computer programs I used was Power Point.  It is a very user-friendly program - important, as I have not used Power Point in 5 years!

So, I just drew some basic geometric shapes in Power Point and estimated a completed length for the bails between 2 and 3 inches.  Remember - the bail has a curve in the center.  Anyway, these are the templates I created.

I cut out the templates and attached them to my copper sheet (24 gauge) using Rubber Cement.

I then cut out the templates, sanded the edges, and textured the heck out of them.  I then tried a new-to-me technique of adding tube rivets.  I have used commercially made rivets, but I cut my own from copper tubing.  Then I stared at them for a while and wondered how in the world I would set the rivet! I used a combination of dapping punches, the ball end of my Goldsmith Hammer and Embossing Hammers and was so happy that it worked!  The picture below is before patina.

And, after patina!  I used my Wubbers Bail Making Pliers to fold the copper in its center - but even a Sharpie would have worked.  The silk fits beautifully through the center.

My personal favorite, this awesome focal bead by Susan Kennedy. The silk matches perfectly! I added two of my copper beads with the precious metal clay - these are the beads in which I left off the tops/bottoms - they are more or less a large hole bead.

The second necklace features another beautiful lampwork bead by Donna Millard. I swear, the flower on this bead looks like it is just floating on water!

I have so enjoyed stepping outside of my comfort zone in using fiber. Both necklaces are lighter than air - perfect to wear on a hot Summer Day! Personally, I love how the silk softens the look of the metal. 

On another note, STILL NO KILN and it has been over 30 days.  I wrote an email last week inquiring a status and they responded quickly saying I stating the kiln should have been shipped out last week. wasn't.  I sent another email - this time, they have not yet replied.  

Thank you so much for stopping by today! Have a wonderful week!!