July 16, 2014
Today in the studio I have been working on some new jewelry that was inspired by the Hydrangea flowers in my garden and the Lily Pads in my pond.
After making sketches of the flowers and lily pads I hand carve them out of wax and then cast the wax sculptures into solid sterling silver pieces. The silver castings need a lot of cleaning up and polishing, so I am currently covered in silver dust.
I decided to solder various arrangements of the Hydrangeas to resemble a natural looking cluster that you would see in the garden and the same with the lily pads. It's fun to come up with different ways to use each casting. These images below are the lily pads being soldered together with the torch and then a soak in the pickle which gets the pieces clean after soldering.
The various soldered arrangements will be made into earrings, necklaces, rings, and bracelets. And, the fun part...tiny blue diamonds are going to be added to the center of some of the Hydrangeas and tiny green diamonds will create a 'frog' on the lily pads!
Another fun day in the studio.
March 01, 2014
I have been working on a new collection this winter of sterling silver flower shapes that I am creating into numerous jewelry pieces. Here are some photos of the process.
Sketching the flower and leaf shapes on a sheet of sterling silver that I embossed on my rolling mill. As you can see, I use every possible area of the silver so there is very little waste. Trying to keep an eye on the materials budget!
Then I use a tiny blade on my saw and cut out each piece individually. This is a tedious process but I wanted every flower and leaf in the collection to be a one of a kind. Each one has its own personality.
The pieces are sanded on my grinding wheel to smooth out the edges and give the flowers a matte finish which I love. I am not into very shiny polished pieces, looking for a more natural and earthy feel to my collections.
A handful of sparkling sterling flowers in my dirty hand.
The flowers are on the soldering block where I solder on the stems and leaves to finish off the look.
My plan is to combine these garden elements to create a large cohesive collection of necklaces, bracelets and earrings. There will also be an element of color added through my new enameling skills.
The collection should be completed within a few weeks in time to celebrate the arrival of Spring!
November 26, 2013
Garden of Silver is here to make your holiday shopping a breeze! Here are some gift options for the jewelry lovers in your life:
Flower Child- Floating Flowers and Water Garden Collections
Yoga Lover-Zen Collection
Rock Star-Midnight in the Garden Collection
Classy Lady-Spring Blooms and Summer Sunshine Collections
Divas-Silver and Gold
Garden of Silver also has Gift Cards available if you can’t decide among all the gorgeous jewelry selections. They are available in increments of $10, $25, $50 and $100. And, one lucky Garden of Silver customer will automatically be entered to win a $500 Gift Certificate! The winner will be chosen on 12/23/13. Happy shopping!
June 13, 2013
My garden is full of huge, gorgeous, fragrant peonies right now. I have spent hours photographing these beauties which I use as references for my colored pencil drawings, one of which is right here!
I also used one of my reference photographs to create a drawing of this peony which I then made into a wax carving that I cast into sterling silver. Just a little peek into my creative process!
April 04, 2013 2 Comments
The humble Daisy, April’s flower, stands for innocence, purity, love, fidelity and patient endurance.
The Daisy flower name originated from the word meaning ‘day’s eye’ which is appropriate since the flower opens in the morning bringing sunshine into peoples lives. Open it is a symbolic representation of of the soul and closed an emblem of purity. The Daisy was often used as a motif in medieval art as a symbol of Christ’s innocence when he was a child.
Throughout history various cultures had different myths and legends featuring the Daisy. For Italians the Daisy is a sacred flower, the star of Italy and the symbol of Queen Margherita. In Scotland the blossoms are called “bairns flowers” meaning child’s flowers. The Welsh call the flower “trembling star” and the German’s call it “love’s measure” as daisy petals measure a lovers adoration. Celtics connected innocence with daisies and thought that daisy flowers grew to lighten a persons grief. And, it was the Victorians who chanted, ‘he loves me, he loves me not’ while plucking off individual Daisy petals.
Enjoy my versions of this sweet, simple flower.
January 21, 2013
A look behind the scenes in my studio! Here are some of the steps that I take to create my cast sterling silver collections. Below are wax wire flower designs that I made using an x-acto knife and a hot wax pen. I wanted to make a collection of larger, yet lighter, floral images for this jewelry collection. My process is very free form and loose. First I will sketch some images in my sketchbook from flowers in my garden and then I cut and bend the wax pieces into various shapes and 'weld' them together with the hot wax pen.