Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Flowers and colour

Everything is about bright colours for me at the moment. I need spring to get into full swing and am really looking forward to summer. The few days of sunshine we had over the bank holiday weekend were a wonderful hint of warm days to come, but it’s gone back to wind and rain all to quickly!

But with my beads and wire, I’m in control. So flowers, greenery and brightness have been prominent. 

Spring flower garden cuff

Pink orbit ring
Green buds necklace

Swirling heart pendant
Candy bright bracelet

Green pearl pendant

Monday, 24 November 2014

Creative thought process

I've never been entirely comfortable using gold colours. Gold tones don't tend to suit me, so it's never been something I naturally reach for when making. I decided it was time I gave it a go so I dug out my Warm Gold colour plated copper wire - real gold is not something to try out new ideas with! 

All the different coloured enamels make the copper slightly different to work with. They might be stiffer, dent easily or be very brittle and difficult to work with. Emerald green in particular is a sod to work with, but has such a bright vivid colour the result is alway worth the frustration and work to get to the finished item. This was the first time I had worked with warm gold and it was an absolute joy to shape! The enamel just seamed to flow with every curve and weave I was giving it. I started forming some quite complex swirling patterns. It was as though the wire was alive in my hands and moving into place all by it's self.

The patterns being formed made me want to make a statement ring to really showcase the movement the wire was capable of. Once made I just had to try it id different colours to see how it would look. And yes, the emerald green was the most difficult on to make!

Medusa rings - including a difficult emerald green

Medusa rings

Having made a few rings, I started thinking that if I flattened the ring out it would make a really nice pendant. So, back to the warm gold coloured wire and again the shapes flowed. But what kind of chain to hang it from? A standard bought chain just didn't seam right for this design. It needed to be something both delicate looking and strong enough to support quite a solid pendant. I also wanted it to be in exactly the same colour as the pendant. A tried out a few different link shapes and stiles of hand made chain but none of them looked quite right. Then I gave a Viking Knit chain with a simple hook and eye clasp a go. Perfect!

Gold coloured Medusa pendant

Again, once I had it working in the warm gold I had to try it out in other colours - although I haven't yet done any viking knit with the emerald green as I'm not looking forward to pulling it through the draw plate!
Line up of Medusa pendants

It's taken a few weeks and lots of hours of work, with plenty of discarded trial runs. But I really enjoyed working through each stage and the end product is definitely worth it!

Friday, 14 November 2014

Star flower necklace

What a year. It’s been so full of all sorts of things that I haven’t been able to keep up with myself! Family emergency after family emergence, a relocation and a back injury (or two!) have filled up our lives. 

But Christmas and a new year is fast approaching and it’s time to start looking to the future. I’ve kept making all though the year and now it’s time to share everything. So many lovely things made and sold. And of course, Silent Bob has watched over it all, inspecting my work to ensure high levels of quality!

Silent Bob watching over me

 Beaded hair comb

Star flower necklace on a Viking knit chain

First thing to do - Christmas craft fairs. Doors open at 10am at the Grand Pavilion in Matlock Bath on Saturday the 15th and Sunday the 16th November. 

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Bead deliveries

Yet again my desk has been so full I can’t work. This time with lots and lots of new beads! I’ve had some huge deliveries and have been really excited getting everything sorted out.

One box of beads being opened

And now I have so much choice with what to work with. I can’t wait to get started! Just one question, what to make first?

Small selection of semi precious stones

Boxes of glass beads

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Craft Fair

Over the last few months my desk has been full of new makes ready for my first craft fair of the season. I’m finally getting to the last finishing touches. There will be some a design I’ll be showing for the first time so I’m really looking forward to it.

Purple memory wire bracelet

Purple memory wire bracelet
Three stand link bracelet

No sneak peeks of the new design, you’ll just have to come along to see it. Doors open at 10am at The Grand Pavilion in Matlock Bath on Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th March.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Photography and Etsy

My photographer did a huge batch of photos for me just after Christmas. It always amazes me the difference between his photos and my snapshots! I love how he captures the colours and details so accurately.

butterfly earrings

spiral ring

tangle ring

three strand bracelet

flower cuff

So now the work of getting everything listed in my Etsy shop begins. You can see what I have available by clicking this link.

Sunday, 29 December 2013

A Christmas commission

The build up to Christmas is hectic for everyone and this year has been no exception! I’ve had the additional fun of having a special commission. The brief was quite vague, a red statement piece to ware with a black top. It can be quite liberating to work with an open brief like that, but also very risky. One person’s idea of a statement piece is another person’s idea of over the top! And with no guidance as to what kind of jewellery was expected - necklace, bracelet, broach or hair slide - the potential for disappointment was huge!

As I know the lady it was intended for very well, I decided that a necklace would be the best option as she rarely wears any other form of jewellery. That decided it was time to get out the sketch book and start planning a design.

40 hours and over 25 meters of vivid red wire later the final piece was finished! Unfortunately I did not have any time booked in with my product photographer before it had to be handed over, so the only photos I have are my own, not a mistake I intend to make again!

Commission statement necklace

It’s 8cm by 8cm, made with 0.9mm and 0.5mm plated coper wire with high grade crystals. The lady is was made for loved it and has been proudly wearing her new necklace at every opportunity. It’s such a good feeling when the time and effort of a commission piece is loved, worth every second of the work that goes into them!

I am now in the process of designing a range of slightly smaller pendants based on the same principals. And I have time booked with my photographer to get some good photos of them!