Wednesday, December 14, 2011
I have had one in mind for a long time, but custom orders tend to take priority over creating new work. So these crosses never got made. I tried to guide him to other jewelry shops in the Cotton Exchange, but they didn't have what he had in mind. I decided that this would force me to make a piece that I've been wanting to do for 2 years. So I asked his price range and I it was enough for what I had in mind. I sketched what I have been thinking about for so long and I was excited when he liked it too.
Tonight my customer picked it up and was thankful that I made it so quickly. It was just what I needed to get this piece out of my imagination. I got to meet his sister when he visited the Cotton Exchange and I loved talking to her about goats and kale. It is very rewarding to do something that is so meaningful. I just knew it was the right thing to do.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
- I have a heart full of gratitude and joy as I pack up three sets of wedding rings ready in time for Christmas. I am so grateful for my customers--that you trust me to make rings for your special day. I am excited to complete two more custom orders to arrive in time for Christmas-each one of these are pieces that I will enjoy making.
I go on and on about this because on December 21st I'm going to have surgery. I have another herniated disk--this time in my neck. I will be so relieved to be out of the intense pain that I've been suffering with for the past 2 months. I have been able to work due to the double blessing and curse of strong painkillers. Apparently this is a common injury for someone who hunches over a workbench. (Insert here a plug for good posture! ha!).
This injury has forced me to do things differently. I need to learn to take time for myself and to not push myself. I will have to change the way I run my business and I might have to rely more on online and custom orders. I do love to do retail, because I love to meet and talk to my customers. All of this thinking has made me realize how grateful I am for my loyal customers. I really do have the best customers in the whole world. To all my customers, I thank you for a wonderful year and I look forward to a beautiful New Year!
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
I just got back from doing two back to back art shows, and was so thrilled to open a package with my "Ring a Day" book inside! "Ring a Day" is a beautiful book full of images from cover to cover. With its field guide type of feel, this book is brilliantly edited by Marthe Le Van and demonstrates the project's breadth and endless variety of rings. Some rings are novel, some are funny, some beautiful, some challenge practical notions of what is a ring.
For the reader--it is a book of inspiration, imagination, and a visual snap shot of the creative process. For me, it is eye candy. I have several rings in the books as well--so I'm slightly inclined to be in love with this book!!! Enjoy and be inspired!
Thursday, September 15, 2011
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
I was thrilled to do a commission for my dear friend for a "Mother's Necklace". I really wanted to work in a silver/blue palate. I used the birthstones for each month of all the children. The top gemstone is an Australian bi-color Sapphire for September--it looks like aqua with some flashes of green. Small bi-color stones when they are set typically flash back one color with lively flashes of the other color. The square middle stone is a raw diamond for the month of April. I was thrilled to use cut and raw stones in this piece. The bright blue cabochon on the bottom is a Boulder Opal for October.
The silver is hand cut with a jeweler's saw and is from my Roman Ruins collection. This was one of my first ideas that I continue to explore. I didn't have words when I first did it, but one day I was describing it to a customer and then I realized how personal this design was.
My life so far has not gone in the direction that I planned after graduation from my Master's Program in Voice Performance. I had planned on making a career by singing art song and opera. I got married just after graduation, and truth be told for many of the wrong reasons, but mostly because I was scared to be on my own. After 4 years my marriage dissolved--but I have a beautiful daughter from it who is the love of my life.
I was 30 and a divorced single mother. Not the way I had planned it at all! I had no singing career and was working 3 part time jobs to make ends meet. As fate would have it, I met my current husband and soul mate not long after my divorce.
We married and I began to work at the community college teaching voice lessons. I began to dabble in making jewelry as a hobby. In a year we had a new baby boy and adopted my 10 year old niece. So my family went from 3 to 5 nearly overnight. I took the next big leap and decided to stay at home with my son and make extra income by making jewelry. I just kept on making and making and working the business.
Six years later, I am incredibly blessed with 3 children, a loving and supportive husband and a career.
For me this piece is about celebrating beauty in our brokenness, wrong turns, and twisted paths. It is about acceptance and trusting in my higher power. I am on a path to live as beautifully as I can. At moments I get glimpses of incredible love, beauty and peace. This would have not been possible if I had not made my "wrong turns". So I celebrate the duality of my life--the good and the bad. It is through being a jeweler that I became a whole person again.
Thursday, August 11, 2011
I have been busy making custom pieces this week. This square band is typically part of my wedding set, but I wanted to add a champagne diamond to make it stand alone.
It makes me think about making more jewelry for Men. It is very heavy with a hammered and brushed texture.
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
This weeks Project Runway challenge was the Pet store challenge. Initially I have to confess that I was not excited about it--sometimes I doubt my ability to manipulate unusual materials. When I saw this dog bone--then I was excited! I was thrilled with how it turned out! I took a rubber dog bone and cut it with my jewelers saw. I connected them with a rust resistant steel wire I got at Harbor Freight. (I bought a pound of it for $5--that's how it was packaged too!)
I may even keep this piece. I made earrings to match--but its a bit busy with the necklace. They touch.
If you want to play, come and check out the EtsyMetal Blog for details!
Thursday, August 4, 2011
5cm x 4cm x 3cm
sterling silver, repurposed
I took this Project Runway Challenge as an opportunity to examine my bench--which is quite messy at the best of times. As I searched for scrap silver on my bench, I cleaned as I went along. Once I found enough silver, I melted the scrap and then rolled it out in my rolling mill. I loved how my blob of cooled molten silver turned into an organic freeform shape. I knew what I wanted to do next. I heated the surface to produce a partial reticulation, which in turn created texture. The hole in the middle naturally formed when I rolled it out.
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
I am absolutely thrilled to be invited to be a part of Art Fair on the Square in Madison, WI this coming weekend. (July 9-10) Its a far drive, but I think that the trip will be worth it. I have never been to Madison, and I'm anxious to visit. I hope that if you live nearby that you will stop by and see my work! I'm booth 351, just in case.
Tonight I'm in the studio finishing up some custom pieces. I always get nervous before a show and the best way I know to combat my nerves is to keep busy. Its quiet in the house and everyone is asleep. Pretty soon, I'll sleep too.
I feel such joy and hope when I think about this show. I'm excited to see what adventures lie ahead! See you at the Fair!
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
I have always had a difficult time with my bezels. Today I took my time and didn't rush any of the sanding or measuring. The extra time I took at the beginning saved me much more time in the end.
This weekend I'll be showing at the Southport NC 4th of July Festival on Franklin Square. Next weekend (July 9-10), I'll be in Madison, Wisconsin for Art Fair on the Square.
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Show Schedule 2011
JULY 2-4 NC 4th of July Festival Art and Craft Show, Southport, NC
JULY 9-10 Art Fair on the Square 2011, Madison, WI (Booth #351)
JULY 30 International Day Festival, Waynesville, NC
AUGUST 20-21 Mt. Gretna Outdoor Art Show, Mount Gretna, PA
SEPTEMBER 2-4 Queeny Park Fall Art Show, St. Louis, MO
SEPTEMBER 24 Artsfest, Winston-Salem, NC
SEPT 30-OCT 2 St. James Court Art Show, Louisville, KY (Booth Fourth St #729)
OCTOBER 9-10 Fall Foliage Art Show, Waynesboro, VA
OCTOBER 15-16 Autumn with Topsail, Topsail Island, NC
NOVEMBER 20-21 Wilmington Art Show, Wilmington, NC
Thursday, February 3, 2011
You can see the sale section here.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Some of the gemstones are garnet, peridot, citrine, amethyst and blue topaz. Buy early to ensure greater selection. Click here for the Sales.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Left: Pink Sapphire in Fabricated Sterling Setting
Right: Prehnite in Fabricated Sterling Setting
I hope to see you there next Friday for some wine and cheese on Friday, January 28th from 6-9pm!
Go to my flickr photostream to get a sneak preview of my latest work.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
I decided that I would start a team on Kiva (microlending for 3rd world entrepreneurs) and invite all of my fellow metalsmiths to join. You do not need to be in etsy or etsy metal to participate. The smallest loan is $25. I made a donation of $25 to be put with other money to make a loan via paypal. Its super easy to do.
Check out http://www.kiva.org/team/metalsmiths_for_change to see if you would like to join.
So please consider joining if you would like to make a small difference in the world of poverty!