Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Paint Slag Jewelry




I have been working on the Fordite,or should we call it Kiteite, and am quite happy with the finished pieces.  The photo above is of the raw paint slag and some finished cabs. As you can see there is a whole lot of work involved in creating beauty out of such a hunk of junk.  It's also very dirty work but the results are well worth it.




I have mounted them so that they are able to spin since both sides look so different and it would be a shame to waste one to a bezel setting. 





Even the edges of these are fun to look at.  

Monday, October 13, 2014

Cork Screw Necklaces

I never think I have enough jewelry for a show and I guess I never will.  I sold a whole bunch of jewelry at the show in Berring Springs so it's time for some new and different items to replace what's gone.  I just finished these cute little cork screw necklaces, all the beads were made by my friend Sharon Pribble an amazing glass bead artist they will be priced at $25.00.

This Friday I will be inside Lynn Ivan Salon  selling my wares from 5-9.  It's the Battle Creek Fall into the Arts so there will be many venues open with a whole lot of different artists showing off their talents.



Sunday, October 5, 2014

All That Wire

I often say when showing my work that the wire is recycled and comes from my husbands job sites.  Today Dave was stripping some wire and I thought that I should show my readers just how it works.  The tool he uses is made by Steel Dragon Tools and I purchased it on Amazon, it's running $349.00 right now.

The first thing you have to figure out is what hole the wire needed to go into so it cuts the plastic but doesn't nick the wire.  It's a bit tricky and some wire is sacrificed while trying to find the sweet spot.


This is one of the holes with the blade hanging down.  Once the wire is sent through the machine the plastic should easily come off but that isn't always the case.


Here's Dave with a big bin of wire.  I can't even begin to lift it. He was out in the garage for over 5 hours stripping wire for me.  The whole reason for this post is to show you that it would be easier to just purchase wire but I love the idea of my jewelry having a past and a beautiful future.  Right now copper wire is running $15.00 a pound and when I figure out the amount of time he spent and the cost of the tool it would be cheaper to just purchase it.  Even after it's stripped I still have to untwist the wire so the single strands can be used and sometimes it has to be pickled to clean off the grime. 

At the show this weekend I got the same sticker shocked customers I always do and I think they believe my jewelry should be cheaper because I use recycled wire but it takes a whole lot more work to use than simply purchasing wire from a supplier. I want to thank everyone for the continued support for artists who use recycled materials and I want to remind you all about the effort it takes to make pretty things out of the ugly mess that's on my garage.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Hammered Cuffs

I got some more cuffs hammered out this week and I'm loving the lift and craders my favorite hammer helps me create.

Framed Glass Necklace

This is a new necklace I've made out of roofing copper and glass shorts, these are the bits of leftover glass rods from making beads.  The glass is interchangeable so you can match your outfits, choose your favorite colors.
Framed glass necklace $55.00
Framed glass necklace $55.00

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Studio Space

Everyone always wonders why art cost so much, next time you buy something handmade think of the tools and space it takes to create such amazing work and know you are supporting something amazing.

This is my main space where I have my torches, exhaust fans and jewelers bench.
Here is the dirty work stations for drilling, polishing, cutting, sanding, cleaning and more.
Here's a space for my friends and I to work on projects together.
And is my tiny sewing closet.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Fordite!

My cousin's husband has been in the car painting business for his whole life, Friday was his last day at his job as a car painter, he was excepted into the police academy at Kalamazoo Valley Comunity College. We are so proud of him for taking this huge career leep.  He has been going to school for many years working toward this goal. 

Today I got a huge box of paint slag also known as Fordite made from overspray of cars Henry has painted.  Since it didn't come from the Ford plant I'm going to call it Hedite.  Stay tuned for the Hedite jewelry to come.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Stitched Leather Bracelet

This weekend my friends Dawn and Melissa will join me for the Holland, Michigan show in Centinal Park from 9-4 if your in the area please stop by, I have some new work, these stitched leather bracelets are somewhat adjustible and I hand dyed them in fun colors combining stamp and metal work.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Bleach Pen Fail

I decided that a shirt would be fun to try Clorox bleach pen on and I didn't even think about the fabric content.   Using a piece of foamcore cut to size and popped into the shirt I started painting with my bleach pen.  It's crazy but I'm sure this is exactly what they mean by this being a moisture wicking fabric because after getting about halfway through the design I could see the fabric pulling the moisture away from the main line of bleach.  I didnt think a whole lot about it thinking it could add a cool effect to the shirt.  When I came back to it the next day you can see in the last photo it was totally bleached out and no pattern was left under the bleach pen and I ended up with a huge yellow blob.  Oh well no huge loss but I would suggest that you stick with cotton fabric for future bleach pen projects.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Bleach Pen Doodle Jean Tutorial

I've been obsessed by what folks have been doing with Clorox bleach pens and knew I had to give it a try myself.  Pintress has pins of a bunch done on all sorts of tee shirts but only a few posts on jeans.  After reading all about making your own bleach pens and more I decided to just purchase the bleach pens for my first go around.  Honestly the pens are under $3.00 each and it took me just over one pen to do every bit of doodling on this pair of jeans.  To me it would never be worth bothering with trying to make my own but that's just my opinion.  I would hate to get totally finished with my project just to find out my bleach ratio was off and I didn't get the nice deep bleached pattern I was looking for.

Supplies:
Jeans or other mostly cotton item
Clorox Bleach Pen
Tooth Pick or other sharp implement 
Wax Paper
Paper Towel

My friend Bethany made a good point, you don't want to use the dollar store version of these bleach pens, they work great on the grout in your bathroom but are to watery to be any good for this application.  Bleach bleeding will happen with the cheap pens, this is yet another reason I didn't want to mess with trying to make bleach paste.


Here are my finished jeans, I just thrilled with them.


I should have started by shaking my bleach pens to make sure the bleach paste inside was evenly distrubited throughout the pen.  I didn't do this but you will :). I started by placing waxed paper on the inside of the pants so the bleach wouldn't bleed through.  I simply cut the basic leg shape and slid it into both pant legs. I wasn't sure where I would end up doodling with the bleach so I simply lined both sides top to bottom.


You could draw a design onto your pants with chalk before applying the bleach but this goes against my jump in with both feet mentality so I didn't. Before you start doodling on the pants try it on a paper towel to get the feel for the pens bleach consistency, have a toothpick handy so you can pop any bubbles that need busting, trust me there will be bubbles.  I realized that I needed to start squeezing the pen before putting it down onto the denim to make sure I wouldn't be starting with a bubble.  I completed the the leg doodle and moved onto the front pocket because these were areas I could do without flipping the pants. The bleach must completely dry before you can work on the other side so no bleach smudging happens.


This is what the bleach looked like after drying, I took this powdery mess outside and brushed it off the pants.  Once it was pretty much all off I rinced the jeans in the tub to get out any extra bleach.  I didn't want it to take the chance that it might lighten the rest of the jean fabric in the laundry.  I have a front loader and they don't use as much water to dilute the bleach so this was just a precaution.


Here is the back of the finished jeans.


Close up of the leg, the toothpick also comes in handy to pull the bleach into points because the pens lay out a fairly thick line.


Here is the rear pocket and I did it last, I don't think that I had the pen as well shaken as the front and it's not as crisp of a design so shake those pens.


This is the front pocket and you can see some of it isn't as crisp as the leg pattern again with the shaking. LOL.   

This project was so much fun I see more in my future, I may have to doodle on friends jeans because just how many doodle jeans does one person need.  My jean jacket may be next on the docket.


Monday, July 7, 2014

Mr. Skull Bracelet

I purchased a skull bead from Laurie Loriola Flanders, she sells her beads under the name Isabel's Rose.  The bracelet was made on the jig and is hinged for comfort and the ease of getting it on and off.    I looked up the skull bracelets I had made in the past and the photo was dated three years ago!  I also made some sugar skull beads two years ago and I'm thinking maybe a cross between the three styles would be fun.



Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Double Hinged Bracelet

I was thinking about making hinged bracelets after taking Richard Salley's class a few weeks ago and the idea came to me that purchased hinges would be so much easier to use than trying to make my own. The patina on these really did turn out purple, pink, orange and blue, it's not a trick of the camera.  I really hope I can repeat these colors and that it wasn't just the atmosphere playing tricks.
Double Hinged Bracelet $75.00

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Funky Skull Necklace

A fun skull necklace made on the Jig with a handmade chain. This skull was created by Marianne Kasparian of MAKUstudio.
Funky Skull Necklace. $90.00 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Handmade Chasing and Texture Tools

I just got back from Bead & Button in Milwaukee where I took a class from Richard Salley in tool making.  I learned how to turn W1 water hardening stock tool steel into chasing and texturing tools.  They turned out amazing I couldn't have been any happier with the class. There was plenty of time to work and I was able to complete 15 tools including all the twisted handles tempering and hardening so they are ready to use. I hope to take more classes from Richard and if you have a chance look up his work its amazing.
Chasing and texture tools along with a burnishing tool and scribe
Notice the fun twist in the handle

Sunday, June 1, 2014