Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to visit Texas with my Mom. We spent most of our time in Austin, visiting friends, then drove to San Antonio for a couple of days. The drive through Texas hill country was beautiful and we stopped for a night at a lovely bed and breakfast in Johnson City, watched live country music after dinner (Mom learned to two step, I just took photos), visited the LBJ ranch (and drove the through a herd of cows in the middle of the road) and since we were nearby I insisted we visit Luckenbach so I could see what the song was all about. This was my first time in Texas, but I certainly hope its not my last. Everyone we met was so warm and welcoming and the vibrant culture, architecture, and scenery was so inspiring. I thought I would share a few images from my trip as well as some of the jewelry inspired by my time there.
I had a great time last weekend teaching a private class with two awesome ladies celebrating a birthday. We did some forging, forming, and since everyone loves to play with fire we did heat patinas on the forged elements. Andrea and Laura were so much fun and raided my stock to add some creative extras to their designs. I absolutely love how they turned out! If you're interested in private lessons or looking for something fun to do with a friend you can purchase them here. Discounts are available for groups of two or more. Please contact me ahead of time to discuss scheduling or for a group rate.
I've been thinking about tackling some kinetic pieces for a while now and finally decided I was up for the challenge. I made a carnival diorama necklace with a ferris wheel that spins. Despite being nerve wracking and challenging at times, it was a fun and rewarding project. I learned a lot and remembered a lot as I had to dig into my mental files and use quite a few of the tips and techniques I learned in college but haven't used in a while.
The wheel is constructed from silver wire and tubing and went through several revisions and simplifications until I decided on a four swinging seat design. The wheel and stand are around 1.5 inches tall and the total width of the necklace is 2.5 inches. You can see more videos of the wheels progress here (on Tumblr). I hope to start on my next piece later in the week. A necklace with figures hanging laundry on the line, it will not be kinetic but I will get to use some of my new forming tools to make the clothing.
I'm taking suggestions for other diorama pieces, what ideas would you like to see?
::Design Your Own Pendant Event::
When: Friday, February 7, 5:00- 9:00 pm
Saturday, February 8, 12:00- 5:00 pm
Where: Metamorphosis Metals Studio
14 Glenwood Ave
Raleigh, NC 27603
What: We had so much fun making pendants with you last year, that we decided to make in an annual event! Choose from an assortment of shapes or if you're feeling extra creative, you can draw your own design. We will cut your pendant from your choice of metal and customize it with stamped text. Then we pass it along to you, where you will finish the pendant, assemble the necklace, add extra embellishments and leave with the perfect Valentine's Day gift for your sweetheart or yourself.
Plan to be with us for an hour, there will be snacks, wine, and a 25% off discount on our in stock work.
Cost: $35 per necklace. Additional costs for longer chains, and optional beads or embellishments. Register here.
Can't make it to the event? No problem, you can design & order online through February 14.
2014 has arrived and we're busy working on new designs for the line. Thanks to the Polar Vortex, the year got off to a cold start. As we've tried to stay cozy in the chilly studio with hot tea and lots of layers, we've found ourselves drawn to the rich warmth of gold, thin stacking bands and tiny pendants that are easy to wear under gloves and scarves. When warm weather arrives, these are the perfect minimal look for summer beach trips and pool parties, and they won't weigh you down in the heat. Also on the horizon for the new year; forged gold hoops, lots of mixed metals, and long chains for layering. Pieces will be added to both Etsy and our new stand alone shop as they become available.
We recently teamed up with Oak City Crafts, a new website promoting North Carolina artisans. You will find some our best selling designs as well as work by many of our favorite local designers.
Hurray, fall show season has arrived! We're kicking off four weeks of back to back shows on Friday at the Morning Times Market in downtown Raleigh. Its Hopscotch weekend, so we decided it was the perfect time for a change of scenery and will be skipping First Friday at the studio this month. You can find us on Wilmington St from 7-11, we'll be sharing a space with Blackbird Blackbird, who I hear is bringing some brand new screen printed tote bags with her.
On Saturday morning, we are off to DC for Arts on Belmont, part of the Adams Morgan Day celebration. This is a new event for us and we are really looking forward to it. We will have special edition DC neighborhood pendants and city skyline necklaces with us as well. I finished them today and love how they turned out.
Thanks to an amazing deal from Priceline, we are staying just 5 blocks from the White House so I plan to tack on a few hours of touristy stuff before heading home on Monday! Here's to an exciting action packed weekend...
Some work in progress shots of my latest piece, Kraken Attack! I'm so happy with how this turned out. (Well, you really can't go wrong with a giant sea monster attacking a ship, but this necklace makes me happier every time I look at it) Not to mention everything came together so perfectly and easily, I only cut myself once and nothing fell apart during soldering.
You can find this version and a smaller one in my Etsy store.
We're gearing up for the fall show season with an updated booth layout. We gave it a test run today at Logan's Festival of the Arts, so I made sure to snap a few photos.
Asymmetrical spoon bracelet
Recently I've been lucky enough to run across a couple of people who have entrusted me to convert their damaged or unused family silverware into jewelry. These pieces were a change of pace from my usual work and a lot of fun to make.
Each commission presented its own unique set of challenges. The first customer had a damaged spoon that they wanted made into three separate pieces of jewelry and the second wanted a bracelet that showcased the engraving of the J initial on the handle. Other than those basic requests the designs were completely up to me. I knew that I didn't want to make the usual spoon jewelry that I'm always seeing, so when coming up with a design I tried to see past the spoon and break it down into basic shapes and components.
I took the first spoon and cut it into three separate pieces, the bowl, the top of the handle and the middle of the handle. I flattened the bowl, formed it into a slight curve and gave it a hammered texture to cover up the damaged area. It made the perfect minimal but bold pendant. Since this spoon had an engraved texture on the entire handle I was able to take the middle section and form it into an asymmetrical open band. Then I took the tip of the handle and soldered a length of rectangular wire to it that became the band. When you wear it the tip rests on top of neighboring finger, so it looks like a multi finger ring.
The second commission was for a bracelet. I originally intended to flatten and form it into a simple cuff, but decided to cut it in half and solder the former bowl to the tip of the handle and add lengths of chain so it could be closed with a clap. I loved the basic design but it seemed to be missing something so I went back and pierced the floral design into the bowl to tie the piece together.
I was a little nervous when I started both projects but wound up very pleased with the results. Now I have the overwhelming urge to hit up the flea market and antique stores in search of more spoons! If you are interested in converting your own pieces of silverware, I would love to hear from you.