Monday, February 17, 2014

New Apatite & Opal Set

So today I got some things completed that had been SITTING on my bench for months!! These pieces I had etched at our last Ladysmiths' etching workshop (see past post for details) and I had big plans for them, and finally yay(!) today was the day!!

The centerpiece is a fiery Ethiopian opal I scored from Tucson last year as part of a parcel of 8mm stones. But the real star of this set are the blue apatites. They have a green tinge to them, making them a sort of light turquoise-y color, and are very appealing! The chain is also a strand of gorgeous faceted apatites. The bail looks upside down, but I really did that to echo the pointy shapes emanating from the etched forms.

I think it has a great ethnic and graphic feel to it, with the earrings matching really well but not too matchy-matchy. I actually took advantage of the wide bottom of the bail as a connector- I drilled a hole, then inserted a balled-up wire from the inside. The balled part allows the wire to not fall through the hole, and then I inserted the end through the pendant and wrapped it for security.  Here's a link so you can see more:

I also have spinner rings back in my shop!! The exciting part is that I now have brass rings available! So if you like the mixed-metal look, you can now opt for the opals to be set into a gold-tone ring. Here's a link:

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Presents for Friends....

This week I worked on a couple of projects for friends. The first, for my friend Karen, who's relocating across country due to a job re-location.  She's part of my lady metalsmiths group ( that meets regularly, and was one of the original and most enthusiastic members! She will be sorely missed! We all decided to make a 'link' for her, so she can connect them all together and wear it to remember us.

I made mine out of Argentium silver so I could fuse everything- no solder. I started with the 2 curved outer pieces to make the shape of a crescent moon. The reason is that Karen's business is called Crescent Studio ( I also encorporated 'K's' for Karen into the design. And lastly, I set a sapphire, because that's Karen's birthstone! I hope she likes it! I placed the loops on the sides so that she could wear it as part of a linked chain, or, she could attach a chain and wear it alone as a necklace.

This next project is also a link project but for charity- CERF. It's an artists emergency relief fund for when things go bad and artists like me need financial help. It's still in the building stage, but the hope is that this linked chain can raise money in some way. Whether the links are auctioned, or the chain is promoted to bring awareness and donations, the bottom line is it's a community event for us metalsmiths to sink our teeth into.

I'm experimenting with photography- this link is almost finished (stone is not set yet, need to clean up a bit) but what do you think? Which background color do you like the best- white, black, or gray?? Leave your vote in the comments below!