Channel Setting

After realizing that nine of the last 10 entries were all about leather, I think it’s time to write about something else… 😉 Guess with my new passion, I have neglected to share many of my metalsmithing pieces!

I continue to take classes with the fabulous Lisa D’Agostino at the Community Education Program at College of Marin – a Bay Area Community College 30 minutes north of San Francisco. Every seven-week session, we work on a project that hones our skills on a different metalsmithing technique – various stone settings (and there are LOTS of them!), forging, fold forming, etching, enameling, riveting, cold connections, casting, mold making, tool making, etc. etc.

This channel setting project started with carving a wax piece. It was the first time working with engravers and I enjoyed the process very much – probably because it feeds on my anal-retentive tendency! Here is the back of the wax piece.

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After it was cast in sterling silver, there was quite a bit of cleaning up and fitting the stones in the channel. I picked peridot – my favorite semi-precious stone. No surprise there for it’s green! 😉

 

Instead of a simple pendant like everyone else, I decided to create an interchangeable “bail” for my glass beads especially since I rarely wear necklaces unless it’s to showcase my glass work. I added a curved tube for the chain and a loop to hang the bead. This picture also shows  the channel setting well.

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Here it is – complete with one of my Celestial Series glass beads!

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Enchantment Series

Have been busy melting glass getting ready for the International Society of Glass Beadmakers annual conference, The Gathering, in Las Vegas end of this month. This will be the debut of my Enchantment Series at its Bead Bazaar – an all-artisan-glass show on Saturday, 1 April.

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This one is the extra large size at 40mm / 1.57 in!

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A group shot for size comparison:

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First Online Bench Sale – Success!

My first online Bench Sale was week was a success! A heartfelt thank you for all your support! I hope to do one twice a year depending on my teaching, demonstration, and show schedules for I usually do not have enough inventory to do more than one venue!

I’d like to recap this momentous event with pictures of what were available. Happy to share that the majority of the items have already arrived at their new homes! 😀

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Enchantment Series
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Scheherazade Series
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Celestial Series
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Dragon Scale Series
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Forged Copper Leaf Shawl Pins

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Sterling Silver Interchangeable Necklace

 

 

 

NEW! Enchantment Series…

 

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Enchantment Series

Hoping to have our first online bench sale next month, figure it should coincide with a new series so I have been working hard to creating something … ummmm… enchanting! 😉

These tiny worlds of shimmering swirls, bubbles, crevices, sparkles, millifiori, dichroic,mesh, etc., all encapsulated in a glass sphere, will hopefully be both enticing and mesmerizing! Some feel like an underwater oasis, others like hidden treasures… let your imagination take you into these tiny orbs and be lost in their mystical depths.

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Enchantment Series
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Enchantment Series

If you are not on our email list  and are interested in joining us for the first online bench sale, sign up on our website! We send about four email blasts a year and never share our list.

Aqua / Turquoise!

I needed to make a special thank-you gift – an aqua/turquoise-color silver glass bead/pendant in my Dragon Scale series. Tried a few combinations and two turned out exactly the way I wanted (don’t you love it when a plan comes together as expected?). This also got me thinking about a potential new class for 2017 – how to create different colors using silver glass with non-reactive glass! 😀

This first one is 36mm from hole to hole.

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This second one is a more wearable size at 32mm from hole to hole and was happily received along with the interchangeable necklace!

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New Celestial Beads

A new customer saw my earlier blog on my new series and asked for the exact one that was already spoken for. I don’t do custom order per se but do make more of a certain series by request with no obligation for purchase required. The customer gets first dibs on the new lot. Here are six I made and one is heading to Australia! 😀

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Celestial Series

Dinosaur Stone Pendant

Traveling always disrupts life and it takes a little time in order to get back into the swing of things. With my travel schedule ramping up again, the plan to keep a regular blog went right out the window! A short trip to Santa Monica, an incredible birthday trip to the north shore of Kauai, and a glass teaching gig at the wonderful Scarab Glass Works in Fresno, California, later – March flew by in a flash!

Fortunately routines are what ground us. A new session of metalsmithing class got me back into the groove. Having an incredible opportunity to purchase this amazing piece of dinosaur stone – a rough piece that was polished just front and back per my specification, I wanted a simple setting that would showcase the stone without any distraction. My teacher, Lisa D’Agostino was instrumental in helping me arrive at this perfect solution.

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Back of dinosaur stone pendant

The exact footprint of the dinosaur bone was cut out on a piece of 18-gauge sterling silver. Six pieces of 14-gauge half round wire were soldered onto the side as prong. The trick was to cut the pieces much longer, file the ends to a point, and stick them into a soft soldering pad perfectly butting up against the back piece. Finally a curved tube was soldered onto the back in an angle so the pendant would hang exactly the way I planned.

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dinosaur stone pendant