Monday, July 6, 2009

Bronze clay photos

Here are some photos of my workspace, and bronze clay pendants that I am working on:

Bronze Clay Goddess

What a beautiful morning! After weeks and weeks of rain, we are finally having some summer weather. We deserve it! Our Fourth of July here was very quiet, but I think we all needed some time to rest and relax. Twelve hour days at work will take a toll!

I wanted to tell you about what I am working on today - besides the Larimar pendant, of course. I am dabbling in precious metal clays, and at the moment I am making some bronze pendants that I will be adding to handmade bronze chains. I wasn't very interested in alternative metals at first, but I am coming around to bronze and brass and copper. If nothing else, it is an economical alternative to silver and gold. I like the look of it, and it appeals to my nonconformist side. Who says jewelry always has to be silver or gold, anyway?

In any case, I am only just learning to work with the clay, and am finding my own way with a little guidance from some excellent books, and information on the web. The first thing I noticed about the bronze clay is that it is very sticky and messy to work with. Take a look at the photos of my work space - the clay gets on everything, and is a little hard to clean off. It also has a longer firing time than the silver clay, but I am very excited about firing these which I will probably do tomorrow. I used gloves this morning to work with the clay, and that has saved a lot of clean up time, even though it was a little awkward. I am letting the pendants air dry before firing. That is the worst part of metal clay - I have to wait to see how it will come out!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Rained all day here - HARD! It doesn't seem very much like July. I hear the weather is supposed to improve over the weekend. I hope so. However, it was a great day to spend indoors with some very nice like-minded ladies who were learning to chainmaille. I am teaching now at the Gemorama store in Hanover, MA. If you're in the south suburban Boston area, and would like to try your hand at making some chainmaille, stop in and join us! I am enjoying these classes so much. It's so nice to meet all of these wonderful ladies, and spend a morning with them.
While I was there, I picked up a beautiful piece of Larimar for a pendant. I have been busy since I came home, creating a suitable bail for this piece, and I think I have come up with something that I am really happy with. I used oversized rings to make a Box chain bail with gold filled wire. I think it has a sort of Art Deco feel to it. I am planning to add graduated links to the bail to make a lightweight Box chain in a "Y" design. I can't quite capture the gorgeous blue color of this stone with my camera. You'll just have to see it for yourself to appreciate it. I will be putting it on display at Gemorama next week. Come by and take a look!