Thursday, 27 September 2007
Tuesday, 25 September 2007
First step is to soak the copper in salty water, about 2 tablespoons in 150 ml. I left them for 8 hours which is the upper limit of the recommended period given in the magazine.
Next, you need to place the copper in an atmosphere of ammonia fumes. This can be done in a lidded container, with the items suspended above a centimetre or so of ammonia before sealing. Alternatively, sit an open container of ammonia on your worktop, place the copper item beside it and cover both with a lid to hold in the fumes. I made up an arrangement using an upside down glass jar, so that I'd be able to see what was happening without removing the lid. The ammonia to use is household ammonia, which is 9.5% ammonia. I got mine in a local hardware shop. So, I took my salty earrings, suspended them above the ammonia, and retired to bed. The magazine suggests that a period of four to ten hours would be suitable: mine were left overnight for ten hours.
And this is the result, which is rather towards the tarnish end of the patina-tarnish spectrum! The final step would be to spray with a protective acrylic coating, but I haven't done this as the finish isn't really worth protecting, and I may clean it off and try again.
There are clearly lots of variables involved here: cleaning, surface finish, how the salt is applied and how long you expose to the fumes. Worth another go!
Monday, 24 September 2007
Relish Inc (http://www.relishinc.com/jewelry.htm). Jennifer Reed and Terri Reed-Boyer use pieces of genuine found Lake Erie beach glass to create their jewelry.
Sea Glass Jewellery by Gina Cowen (http://www.seaglass.co.uk/default.cfm). Glass from all over the world is used by this artist, who describes the glass as "tide-tossed luminous pebbles of colour"
Lisa Hall Jewelry (http://www.lisahalljewelry.com/seaglass.html). The Cranberry Island beaches in Maine are the source for the lovely sea glass in this range of jewelry.
Saturday, 22 September 2007
The starting point for the earrings was a 10 mm diameter clear acrylic rod. I cut two slices (each about 4 mm thick) from this using a piercing saw. Wet and dry paper (used wet) of grades 600 and 800 was then used to smooth the cut faces, and reduce the thickness of each slice to 3 mm. The cut faces were still matt at this stage, and polishing grade paper was used to regain their transparency.
Acrylic paint was applied to one polished face, in layers. Two coats of varnish (I used polymer clay varnish) were applied on top of the paint. Finally, a silver earring post was glued to the back with two part epoxy glue. It seemed likely that the layers would be ripped apart when the earring backs were pulled on and off the posts, but this hasn't happened yet (4 months).
I very much like the way the light enters the acrylic through the sides as well as through the front face, making the paint take on a glow. I shall definitely be using acrylic again. A larger picture is on flickr.
Thursday, 20 September 2007
I then moved on to make balls by needle felting, adding a design once the shape was well formed. The balls were finished off by wet felting to make them nice and hard. It isn't very easy to control a pattern when wet felting the ball from the start, but using both methods seems to work well.
These earrings were made from some of my first little balls, which are about 15 mm in diameter. Each one has a different pattern because I was trying things out, but I rather like them as a non-matching pair. The wires are silver and the drop 35 mm.
Monday, 17 September 2007
Saturday, 15 September 2007
Michael Peckitt - Very Colourful Jewellery (http://www.michaelpeckitt.com/). This jewellery really has the WOW factor!
Sarah Packington (http://www.sarahpackingtonjewellery.co.uk/). Stunning effects achieved with small amounts of colour.
Gail Klevan (http://www.gailklevan.com/). Richly decorated and pleasingly shaped designs.