handmade jewelry & metalsmithing

Springtime=Birds and Candy Colors

Aventurine Owl Pendant

Aventurine Bird Pendant

Everybody knows the spring/Easter-y colors; the colors that M&M's change to and those marshmallow eggs that are great for hiding, but not adequate for eating. I've been laying on the green and purple stones-Aventurines & Amethysts-highlighted by yellow gold accents. And birds are a major inspiration. I sleep in front of a huge window facing a very old oak tree, and assuming theere's no tornado, I leave the windows open pretty much year round. Through the winter, there was only one bird that hung around, but now there's a new bird call adding to the bunch every morning. Since they're such nice harbingers of spring, i believe their image qualifies for totem status.

sawing out a bird

My system for making the birds is to draw out a basic bird shape onto the silver, then I saw him out and change him as I build the piece around him. I might saw off the feet and cut the wings in more, to make a soaring bird, or round out his belly to make a perched bird. No silver's really lost because I refine all my scrap, and I much prefer a way of working that lets me sculpt with the metal, rather than doing all the designing on paper. A three-dimensional final product really calls for a three-dimensional workup.

sanding before setting the stones

These two pendants are being sanded and polished with the flex-shaft-a flying songbird and a perched dove.

Perched Dove Pendant

Amethyst Ring

I really like the way a tiny bit of gold makes the color of these stones more vibrant. Gems have me kinda of hypnotized lately, they play off of their surroundings so much. In the sping, when you're revelling in the sunny days you realize how much you can enjoy something that catches the light. My last studio day was quickly turned into a picnic/nap & draw in the sun-day when the light was making rainbows off my new engagement ring, and it just made me want to stay outside and take in all the new plant life that was popping out over Cara's backyard. First day of the year I could lay in the soft grass, and I had good friend to talk to, kitty batting at her gardening gloves, and adorable baby Alex pulling up grass and crumbling up leaves. Perfect day, I got some very inspired designing done that had been giving me a headache before. I'm making some pieces for the workshop faculty exhibit and silent auction for the Appalachian Center for Craft where I'll be teaching an intro jewelry-making class. It really made me feel like we were back at the Craft Center, as that was pretty much how your time got spent, minus babies & kitties, laying in the grass with a project in mind and all the nature inspiring you and the ideas just flow.

SKull pendant

But I will say that Cadbury eggs are not a sunshine-picnic treat..more of a pudding-without-a-spoon. I'll also attribute Easter-candy longings for the candy-skull bent my skull pendants have taken.


4 responses

  1. Anna Quarles

    Ah, beautiful new things! But how, HOW will I enjoy my pudding spoonless??

    March 18, 2011 at 9:49 p03

  2. Anna Quarles

    BTW, the price range for that two tone ring at the store that I work at would be $550-$750…go make that cheese!

    March 18, 2011 at 9:49 p03

    • wow-New York jewelry at Knoxville prices-I’m so glad I got to catch up with you this morning-you’re always so high energy & inspiring, plus you understand the metal talk, so I always have a ton of things I wanna hear your wise opinion on;)

      March 18, 2011 at 9:49 p03

      • And just to clarify, that amethyst ring is not my engagement ring;) It’s my own creation and it’s available on Etsy…

        March 18, 2011 at 9:49 p03

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