Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I Might Just Be A Jewelry Artist When I Grow Up, ...Too

I am so entranced with a new mag I got at B&N a week ago! Hey, Susan Sark, I am juiced! Belle Armoire's new wire wrapping magazine is making me itch to try more techniques. I certainly do like the fact that I can create jewelry without buying a kiln and taking classes (being a self-taught sort of person). I had the interest many years ago in college, but it never amounted to much, and ended dismally with a hammered project that was far too ambitious. I attempted a copper bowl, and the sheet metal was so thick that it took all my strength and didn't make a dent. I even enlisted the assistance of a few athletes, and it simply served to embarrass their male egos. All I ever did afterward was to string a few beads during the 70's like everyone else. What I especially like are the new outrageous designs that are coming out now. Call it "alternative art" or "upcycling" or "indie," it is all very creative and it doesn't require being a serious artisan or any cultural standard of perfection. Wire wrapping which used to really turn me off as looking "Mom's and Pop-sy," an alternative to real metal working. Now, it is coming into it's own as expressions of inspired design. I have a special love for the little nets that are made to hold something precious and dangle as a pendant. To me they speak of infinite possibilities. In the meantime, as I hone some new skills, I have made a little something with a Valentine's theme. This being my first try, I hope to get a lot better at manipulating the wire and using the hammer to forge the metal. It might even be in line to buy a few tools. Some people think copper is too amateurish, but I like the earthiness and warmth of copper and it's yielding qualities. It is also far less expensive than silver and gold, and is perfect for budding jewelry artisans to play with. This project is all about fun, and I do not pretend that I am original with it. In fact, I saw a very similar design in my Googling explorations, and after analyzing the techniques and how I could go about doing this too, I made my own attempt. There were a few mistakes I made along the way, but I let them simply create a new design. It was all about learning something, and that part was a big success. In case you have the itch to create something beautiful to adorn yourself or to gift to others, here is a fabulous site, The Beading Gem's Journal. Here you will find endless info and has helped and inspired me.