Tuesday, August 30, 2016

"We interrupt our challenge schedule to try something new for the month of August....a headpin challenge. But not just any kind of run of the mill headpin. 
We're talking fancy schmancy art headpins.

What is an art headpin? 

Well...it's a headpin that is handcrafted by an artisan, has been manipulated in a manner that is more than just a ball end, and has the potential to be the centerpiece of a creation rather than just playing a supporting roll."   (the above statements are courtesy of 

Well I checked my stash and rats, I don't own any art headpins. 
How did that happen? I love art headpins. 
So I'll just have to make my own. 
Take some wire -20 gauge; cut two pieces 6 inches long

Now I could just make swirly coiled headpins but that's so meh. 

Lets try soldering.
So I make some bends on one end of each wire to create triangles. 
Make a bend in the middle of one side to make the long pin part of the headpin.
Next-add some solder to fill in the gaps .
Sounds simple -right? 
 Who knew that solder doesn't go where one wants it to just by wishing. 
You actually have to control the solder. 
My soldering skills are rusty - well truthfully they are non-existent, 
so this was truly a challenge for me.
but I persevered and FINALLY got the solder to stay where I wanted it to stay.

they don't look all that great here
But were they what I wanted to create? Perhaps, perhaps not,  but it took so many attempts to get to this point that I decided they are just fine. So MOVE ON Deb. 

Part of the challenge for me was to also make a finished piece of wearable jewellery. 
so the process continued......... 
I felt the headpins were a bit raw and unfinished so I added some (Lisa Pavelka) Magic-Glos which requires UV light to cure them, so  then I hung them outside to dry and cure for 1/2 hour. Once cured they have a lovely shine plus some thicker dimension to them so they look coated in glass. I was pretty darn pleased with how they turned out. 

Next step - choose some lovely glass beads to make earrings. 
Why does that process strike such fear in our hearts? 
We want perfection folks but perfection takes time and the deadline was looming, so I made my choice, added some tiny lampwork rondel spacers and wired them all together. Add some hand made ear wires and I'm done. 

See how pretty they turned out . They are 2-1/2 inches long. I make my ear wires with long tails at the back for better balance and security, they don't fall out of my ears as easily
This process was challenging but exciting and I am much more prepared to do it again with other materials 

Thanks so much for stopping by. 
To see what the other artists made, click on any of the links below.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Luna Moth Challenge

Over on the Allegory Gallery Facebook page there is a challenge (or several) going on.
One of them is the Luna Moth Challenge . We were required to purchase the kit from the Allegory Gallery website and then had quite a few weeks to create something with those beads.
We had the option of adding from our own stash or not. I chose to NOT add in other bits this time.

I decided I wanted the one -holed focal LUNA MOTH pendant to be a non- pendant so I added another hole opposite the first one, thank goodness for my Dremel Micro. It's become a real workhorse in my studio.

I have not used waxed linen before in my jewellery making, (only for handmade book bindings.)
It was an interesting material to work with. It is self needling cause it's sticky and does fit through quite a few bead holes, even the small e-beads we were given as part of the kit. It does create a less flexible finished piece than is usual with other fibres, but it holds KNOTS really well. Bonus!!!

This being my first time using waxed linen cord I didn't calculate the correct length to start with, (factor in the knots next time Deb) so my first attempt ended up being choker length. And I do mean CHOKE-er. I don't have a skinny neck and the end product, while gorgeous, was not wearable by me. But I was on a deadline and the challenge photos were due so I posted it anyhow to the Facebook page.

soft and pretty LUNA MOTH choker
It fits my mannequin but she has a skinny neck, a really skinny neck
But it's done. 

but......... If you are like me you often are not satisfied with what you create and things need tweaking. So I tweaked.  I had added a small cord crimp to each end to allow me to attach the lobster clasp. so adding more waxed linen was going to be problematic. so off came the jump rings and I knotted the additional linen cord to the loop on the crimp end and continued to add more beads. It is now a more wearable 26" long with a button and loop closure. so it is metal Free. Not an issue for me but if I decide to sell it that may be a selling point. I also added two beads (and another hole) to the Luna Moth pendant to guarantee it wont flip over or upside down when wearing it. I guess after all this it ended up being a pendant anyways. Oh dear.

This is my finished piece and I won't be remaking it again lol.

A much longer necklace now

I added Wooly Wire twists to cover the metal cord ends so no exposed metal .
I used one of the larger gemstone beads to make a button and
 two loops of linen cord twisted together to make the loop.

If you want to see what the other artists made with this kit and the Tribal kits as well pop over to the Facebook page. there are tons of things to see so prepare to browse for a while.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Oh my word it's almost march

Holy cow. where has the time gone? 
I have been remiss in updating my poor blog.

I had a very busy fall craft and art show season so I'll blame that on my lack of posting here. 

I have been working on some new jewellery designs and
 once I get them photographed I'll pop them up here for a show and tell. 

Hope you all are surviving winter . Its a weird one for sure.

In the meantime here is a photo of my very first art journal page. 
A new venture for me this year.