Friday, 20 February 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 7 - The Corpse Bride

Week 7's theme for the Year of Jewelry weekly challenge was "The Corpse Bride". Being a massive fan of Tim Burton, this is a film I've seen - and enjoyed - many times, but watched it once more - for "homework". ;)

The Corpse bride herself - Emily - did not wear earrings, but these wonderful rose components - vintage brass mesh - both inspired me, and reminded me of her sadly neglected tiara. I shaped and hammered sterling wire to create the base of the chandelier style earrings, and then added a Tim Burton colour palette of olive, jet black and earthy gold. These hues were created with black spinel and scapolite - both AAA gem grade - and slightly more rustic green tourmaline rondelles. Tendrils of fine chain dangle from this gothic cluster, and the whole design was oxidised heavily and left a gorgeous gunmetal hue.

Emily's Earrings sold in a flash (thank you Pamela!) but I did make another design in a similar vein: Emily's Bouquet

I have really enjoyed making this style, so I think you will be seeing more of these! Hope you are having a great day wherever you are. :)

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 6 - Wassily Kandinsky

Week 6's Year of Jewelry weekly challenge theme was Wassily Kandinsky. I was fortunate enough to see one of his amazing works, years ago, at an exhibition at Canberra's National Art Gallery. It was a work from Die Blau Reiter movement, which was founded along with Franz Marc (another favourite!) The paintings that most appeal to me however, are the later, more abstract geometric works - such as the famous Composition VIII. I especially love his works that explore circles combined with hard geometric shapes, and thought that I would best be able to translate these to my jewellery.

I started off with a length of sterling wire that I shaped and hammered into a circle, then I coiled thin wire over the frame. To that I added 4 intersecting lines of sterling, securing them to the frame. Over these geometric shapes I added two enameled metal rings - in mauve and scarlet - and a rustic vermeil ring, along with a large plump pale amethyst briolette, and a smaller, slightly darker amethyst faceted round. I attached a generous length of modern angular chain to the pendant - long enough to not require a clasp. To finish Kandinsky's Circles, I oxidised the entire design and then rubbed it back selectively.

More pictures of this design can be seen in my Etsy store.

Monday, 16 February 2009

a thank you... NeverEver who was my 2000th heart back in December! Don't tell her these are on the way - it's meant to be a surprise. :) These little sweeties are made from AAA imperial topaz and vintage glass floral beadcaps. Placed on handforged ear wires, they were then oxidised and rubbed back. I hope Emma likes them!

Friday, 13 February 2009

Australian Bushfire Crisis

It has been a sad week for Australians. Substantial parts of Victoria have been devastated by bushfires that have been likened to Hiroshima. The sheer scale of loss is unfathomable. As I write this, we have over 230 lives lost and over 1000 houses detroyed, not to mention the lifestock, wildlife and livelihoods destroyed. (This number will deifinitely rise as more areas are invesigated thoroughly).

I am proud to be part of the DUST team (Down Under Street Team) on Etsy, where feliciafairy has established a store to aid the bushfire victims - OzBushfireAppeal. If you can make a purchase or donate an item to sell - all proceeds will be donated each Friday to the Red Cross.

Saturday, 7 February 2009

The hot weather continues

One of the casualties of the hot weather we've been experiencing here in South Australia, has, unfortunately, been death. Elderly people, who have been unwilling or unable to use air conditioners or fans have suffered terribly, and our wildlife and pets have found the heat unbearable too.

I've been out at least once everyday in the heat "watering" my chickens. They are quite indignant about it, but so far (fingers crossed) I haven't lost any. My neighbours - Joyce and John - rang us a couple of days ago, and invited us to have a look at a koala in their tree. I thought: "Koala - we had one over here, I wonder if he is the same one!" However, one look at this baby proved it was indeed a new character.

The little fellow had probably either been left behind by his mother, or his mother had died, and Joyce and John took pity on him and put a dish of water in the crook of the tree for him to drink. He promptly sat in it! (You can see the dish under his furry bottom!)

Then, to Joyce and John's delight, he actually lapped up water from a container, and let them pat him. The poor little dear! That's when they called us, and both my boys were fortunate enough to have this wonderful experience too.

In this last picture, I think he looks particularly satisfied. Note the wet goatee!

Friday, 6 February 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 4 - Memoirs of a Geisha

I've managed to upload my contributions to the YOJ backwards - I'm blaming the heat! (It obviously was not *my* fault!)

Week 4's theme for the YOJ was "Memoirs of a Geisha". Having read - and thoroughly enjoyed - the fantastic book in the past (a few times) I decided I would seek the movie out as well. I was slightly disappointed with the movie, but the costumes - oh! they were amazing!

My choice of a cherry blossom draws parallels with the geisha - incredibly beautiful and prized, yet restrained within an opulent environment.

I created a freeform goldfill frame for the sakura, and then made a seven-petalled blossom with garnet hued keishi pearls, to sit within the frame. To this was added a centrepiece of rubies, which overflows in a luscious fashion. The interior was wired with thin sterling wire which contrasts beautifully with the golden hues. A tassel - created with all goldfill components - dangles from the base of the blossom. The detailed pendant hangs from 2 strands of coordinating goldfill chain, which is finished with a handforged clasp component - securely linked used two sparkling jet black spinel rondelles.

More images can be seen here in my Etsy store.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 5 - Stone Age

A little late on this piece!

This week's Year of Jewelry theme was "Bronze Age", and I decided to create an urn, or amphora.

The outline for the amphora was created in goldfill, and painstakingly wirewrapped in thin sterling wire. I then created an elaborate pattern at the neck of the amphora, using a double row of glowing rhodolite garnets, and a glimmering row of special msytic topaz. Beneath this, a row of angled goldfill beads are perched, with a truly incredible carved lemon quartz bead secured in the vessel itself. Oxidised and rubbed back to reveal the textures of the wire patterns, this was secured to a length of sterling chain using goldfill beads and sterling wire, and finished with a Balinese silver "s" clasp.

This is available in my Etsy store.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

January update

I ended up not making a huge amount towards the end of January, but nevertheless, a few designs to show off.

These are all available in my Etsy store. More soon! :)