What I made on the weekend

After a couple of weeks of not making any jewelry, I had a fairly productive weekend and made some new pieces and tried out some new techniques.  They didn’t work out perfectly, but I’m quite pleased with these items.

A few weeks ago, I found an image I had saved of a pendant that was framed with sterling silver.  I thought that would make really cute earrings.  So I gave it a try, only to discover the technique is trickier than I was expecting.  I was making some earrings with black labradorite, but to fix a mistake I made with the first earring, I cut the silver too short.  Not wanting to waste sterling, I made this pair with some pink shell.

Pink shell earrings, with sterling silver frame

Pink shell earrings, with hammered sterling silver frame

Here is the second pair I made, this time using the black labradorite (aka larvikite).  The stones are really pretty, they have wonderful blue flashes in them. 
Black labradorite earrings, framed with sterling silver

Black labradorite earrings, framed with sterling silver

I also finished a pair of earrings that I had started back in July.  I had some large sterling silver links that I had soldered and hammered with plans for these earrings.  I finally finished them last night.  The briolettes are chalcedony and they are wrapped with very fine sterling silver wire.
Chalcedony and sterling earrings

Chalcedony and sterling earrings


And finally, a bracelet.  I was inspired by some earrings I saw in a book on cold connections.  I thought it would be cute as a bracelet and decided to try with copper. 

Aventurine and copper bracelet

Aventurine and copper bracelet

Copper is a great practice material as it is much less expensive to buy than sterling silver and so if I make mistakes, that’s fine.  It’s an opportunity to try out new techniques without the stress of wasting material.  Plus I really like the look of copper and I wear copper pieces, not just silver ones.  It was a good thing I tried it out in copper first, because I made five links, three for the bracelet and I was going to use two for a pair of earrings.  I was unhappy with how two of the copper links turned out, so I didn’t make the earrings.  But I had three that I was able to use for the bracelet.  And I think that I learned a lot about punching holes in the right place and making sure to saw lines at a right angle. 

The beads are green aventurine and a fabulous colour in person.  But unfortunately the bracelet is too large for my wrist (it’s a 7″ bracelet), so this item won’t be for me.  I’ll put it for sale on my web-store.  But I already have plans to make one with oval hammered links of copper with some nice amazonite beads I have.  I will make sure this one is small enough to fit me (I’ll make smaller links). 

Working with metal is so much fun.  I’ve been working with wire for about a year and a half now and I love how wire can be transformed into so many cool things.  I started working with sheet metal in May, and now I feel as though the world of jewelry-making has expanded so much…  Learning to saw sheet was one of the most valuable things I have done.  So many shapes can be made, and used in so many different ways.  And I can solder too, which seems to make the possibilities endless…  It’s so exciting!


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