Here are a few of my latest fold forming and scoring experiments. It’s really pretty amazing what you can do with a hammer and a few colored pencils!
Here is another set of small bowls I created this last couple of weeks. I’m really loving the contrast on these bowls. You can’t tell from this angle, but the bottom of these bowls is bright blue!
These are two experiments in sinking copper bowls from just a few weeks ago. I really enjoyed the patina process on these bowls. It’s amazing how a household chemical can change the surface of a handmade bowl.
This was a unique challenge for me. I had never carved a stone setting in wax and I'm really happy with the results. My client loves it and boy does it really sparkle out in the sun!
This is the final cross made out of diamond and gold jewelry from a customer's mother who has passed on. This was very special and sentimental to me. His wife was even able to provide me with a sample of his mother's handwriting so I could personalize an engraving on the back of the pendant. So awesome to be a part of this project.
These are very cute stacking mother's/grandmother's rings. I made these as a request for my aunt. Each child/grandchild and their birthstone. I flush/gypsy set the stones and hand engraved the names on to the rings. These are about 3mm in width and stack nicely.
I used the customer's old gold and diamonds to redesign and create this one-of-a-kind piece. The bezel is 14K white gold around the larger diamond. I am happy with the final result.
This was a fun project. We incorporated stones from several personal friend/relatives of my client and turned out a very pretty ring for him to give as a special gift.
This was a super-fun project. We made some significant changes from the original ring and it turned out great. I really love how the eyes look dark, but catch the red highlights out in the sun.
This was a custom design by my client. He had very specific instructions on the stones and the final settings of these beautiful moissanites. I'm happy with the outcome and it seriously challenged my engraving and stone setting skills.
This stone is BIG! I really love how the gentle taper helps keep this stone front and center on her finger. I am impressed with the quality of the moissanites created by Charles & Colvard.
This was a special birthday gift. I hand engraved the floral motif and it is set with a 4.5mm near-colorless moissanite.
The final finished turkey spurs. One gets the left and the other gets the right. I sure hope they love them. They're a special gift.
A dear friend of mine reached out for a special gift for his wife's birthday. She's Native American so i came up with something to reflect her style and her heritage a bit. She loves it and I'm really happy with the way it ended up.
This ring was originally filled with diamonds. My client used the diamonds to create a custom pendant for his girlfriend and we decided to add this 8mm round white sapphire to the top with the remaining gold. I added the sterling silver cigar band around the top and stippled both the band and the gypsy setting to give it a nice stardust effect.
This is a 10 x 12mm yellow labradorite bezel set in sterling silver. I realy love how BIG this stone is!
My lovely client Beverly has a tiny little finger. We sized and set a 10 x 8mm oval white sapphire in a sterling silver step bezel ring just for her. She loves it and it fit perfectly!
My lady biker friend Connie really wanted something to represent her Honda motorcycle in a pendant. She explained it was difficult to find anything Honda related in jewelry stores. So, we came up with the idea to do something similar to a ring her man wears. Instead of making something bulky and full of testosterone, we opted for this little feminine nod to Honda. She loves it and I've already had requests to make some related to Harley-Davidson and Indian. So, on to the next project.
This was a makeshift hammer rack on my forming bench. Unfortunately, the screws I used to put the rack in place broke, so off to the hardware store for some real metal screws and a rebuild.
Jaycie got a great shot of my hands while I was setting the stone into the personalized birthstone rings. Boy, I need a manicure!
Engraving on the inside complete!
Here is a quick photo showing you the starting process of making pieces in my studio. I melt the metal down in a crucible using a propane torch and pour it into a wire ingot mold. This is the start of a new ring.
Here's a shot of me working on a very special cross this past month. We used a mother's gold and diamond jewelry to melt down and make a new pendant.
I can't give all the details here yet, but this is a custom build for a special friend. It's a beauty and will be finished in the next few days.
This is an action shot of the midterm project I worked on last weekend. It is almost finished, but here I'm soldering the back plate to the handmade/engraved bezel.
Here I am measuring my width to find the center for holes to be drilled. I'm practicing with the dial caliper.
This is a great photo taken by my studio assistant. It's so nice to get some action shots up here and keep y'all in the "know" with what I'm working on.
Here is a snapshot of the WIP on the fish tail exhaust engraving I'm working on. I'm hoping to have these completed by May 31, 2017! Come by and see the progress.
A friend brought me a rattlesnake vertebrae and I just had to make sure I got a great casting out of it. This is the raw casting waiting for the final polish.
Yes, I said turkey spurs. A dear friend is a hunter and wanted to give his daughters something unique and different for Christmas, so he brought me his spurs. We made an RTV mold and then cast them in sterling silver. Both weighed right at one full troy ounce of silver.
Here's a men's ring in 14K yellow gold. This is the raw casting straight out of the quench bucket - well, I cut the sprue off first, but it's almost flawless. This was 1.5 troy ounces of 14KY grain... This is a BIG ring.
Here is a shot of the raw 14K yellow gold casting for a women's solitaire. Yes, gold isn't very pretty until you polish it! But, this one turned out beautifully.
I am super-stoked about the way these two pendants turned out. From the raw skeletal armitures to the final coiling and oxidized pieces, I loved every minute of working out the details on these pieces. The FEATHERS! Yes, they were the ultimate topper to finish both.
Here is a shot of the smaller pendant with its final patina. Now to add something special. It needs something amazing!
I know the soldering really shows up even though this has the final patina - its the drawback to having only silver solder. I gave away my sample of copper solder; should have kept it. Anyway, I still like the overall shape and structure, but it's missing something...
This is a quick view of my "Knit, Crochet & Weave in Metal" class final project. I had to come up with a suite of pieces that reflected some of the skills we learnedfor fiber and translate them into metal. These are the raw armitures with the coiling technique started.
This was my first experiment in weaving sterling silver wire. And yes, I did have to solder all of the small joints together to make sure it didn't unwrap. I'm not sure if I like the high shine or the oxidized version. I'm partial to the patina, but it looks great both ways.
This is an in progress photo of a special gift for a dear friend. I'm trying out a new technique I learned in my master's program. I hope it turns out as well as I imagine it to.
Here is a work-in-progress shot of "Willa-G" for Sue's Street Glide. This is the wet image of the leather while working the design into it with hand tools and a Delrin hammer. Each line is cut with a swivel knife then made three dimensional with tools. When it's the tooling is done and the leather is dry, I will dye it black and add some crystal bling to it!
This is a practice plate I've been working on for a couple of weeks not. Of course, it's practice so I've been adding a little here and there in between custom jewelry and leather clients. I will have it done eventually and it will be added to the wall of samples for my walk-in clients to admire and maybe even choose for something special.
This custom pendant project was underway in early June 2016. My client had a men's ring with the diamond cluster pictured here that he wanted turned into a pendant for his girlfriend. This shot is the WIP of the topper out of the men's ring and getting ready to be soldered into the new pendant.
One thing, the client had a pendant that he wore daily that we mimicked for her pendant. She absolutely loves it! I'm happy with the way it turned out, the only problem... I forgot to snap a picture before she came to pick it up.
Some may know, but for those who don't, I am in a master's degree program for jewelry and metal arts through the distance learning program at Academy of Art University in San Francisco, CA. This photo is a quick snapshot of a final project I worked on for my Digital Design and Laser Cutting class last Spring. The floral and scrollwork was designed in Illustrator and then sent off to Ponoko for laser engraving. You can't see much of the engraving except for the dye I added, but I think it turned out well. There are a few things I'd do a little differently next time, but this was a really fun, creative way for me to get back into my leather working tools!
Here are a few progress shots of my work on my final project for my casting class this semester. I made a rubber mold of a porcupine bone with a tap & die, pulled waxes, cast in bronze and attached the microbolts.
These are the quick set up pics from my latest lost wax casting project. I'm working on a sculpture for my Master's program.
This tiny book (30mm x 35mm) is a creation I made for my Book Arts class at AAU for the Spring 2016 semester. The challenge was to make a book with anything but paper products, so yes, I made a metal book.
It's made from 20g nickel sheet and is hand cut, stamped and textured by me!
These were fun little flowers to figure out. I've never really used the pink sculpting wax before, but I decided it was time to practice and get my fingers "dirty" with it.
I think they turned out pretty well. The bottom right corner is what they look like straight out of the quench bucket. Now I just need to make something with them!
Here is a sampling of the tools on the bench for a wax model in progress. They will eventually be ocean wave pendants, but right now, they're still in the hard wax phase. Next will be spruing and model investing getting prepared for the wax burnout process.
I'm very happy about how this one turned out. I used my Lindsay AirGraver to cut the design into the freshly polished surface and then stained it with black India ink. It's abstract and interesting.
I picked up a cow bone chew from Tractor Supply to practice some scrimshaw. I sliced the bone using a band saw and then polished the surface with sandpapers. Next I used my Lindsay AirGraver to cut the design and then finally India ink to stain the design. The curves with difficult to achieve with such a hard bone, but I did it.
This is the set up for an etching. I used PnP Blue to print an image and transfer it to the copper using a hot clothes iron and pressure. They're all ready to go into the etchant and come out beautiful.
Here's a shot of my engraving practice plate. I'm practicing my own scrollwork and getting to know my Lindsey Air Graver up close and personal.
This is the paper mock-up for my final project for my Advanced Jewelry Design & Fabrication class. They will be a set of gauntlets for a man and woman. I'll share the details when they're done.
This was a commission from my sister-in-law. As a prototype, I think it turned out very well. So, now on to the sterling silver version.
These were so much fun to make. The photo on the left is the raw castings before I sand and polish them. The photo on the right is the final charms after the loop has been soldered and they've been tumbled overnight.
This is a starting shot of the mold making process in my studio. I use Castaldo Rubber products and cast my own charms from a master made in sterling silver.
Once the mold is complete, I inject hot wax to make a model for lost wax casting in multiples. It's fun and challenging all at the same time.
This is the start of a bracelet chain made from 14 gauge sterling silver round wire. Each ring is formed by hand around a mandrel, cut with a jeweler's saw, then soldered using an oxygen/propane torch setup.
Once the chain is complete, the item will be pickled to remove the fire scale and polished to give it a high shine.
This is a 2-inch diameter disc in which rings are being soldered for an enameling project in development for one of the classes to be taught this fall.
This is a work in progress wax carving of a monogram charm. I use these to invest and burnout the wax to get the sterling silver casting.
Once the casting is done, I hand finish the piece and connect it to a bracelet or a necklace for the final piece.
These are on the bench waiting for my decision to either tube set or prong set these great, colorful stones.
These are the rough castings of tiny revolvers I made in December 2013 and are going to become part of the Summer 2014 charm line.
These are the parts to the moon stacking rings before they've been soldered together and polished.
This is a quick shot of the wire blanks I solder together to make my textured bangles. Each one is carefully measured for the client, soldered then finished using hammers, sandpapers and other items to texture and polish.
Here's a quick look at some new charms I'm creating for the store. These have been cast and are awaiting pickle, detach and polish.
This was my first real attempt at a 3-part rubber mold specifically for jewelry! I used a porcupine bone from Gramma Myrt's collection and created a mold for a wax copy that incorporates a micro-bolt for a connector. I had never thought to do this before and if I hadn't been in a casting class for my Master's program, I probably would never have thought of it.
This was the beginning of my project for my semester final.
The mold and the wax injection worked beautifully. My castings came out great and now to set the stones, engrave and add the pendant bail.
This project was a lot of fun. My client had broken the diamond top off of a ring her boyfriend had given her and wanted something a little lower profile, but just as beautiful. So, I shortened the prongs on the setting, cast a custom band and set the old topper upon a new ring. She loves it and won't take it off! It makes me happy!
Seth wanted to make something special for his girlfriend, now fiancee, Amanda! He designed and picked out the stone and I did my best to give his design life. It's 14K white gold with hand engraved Celtic knot work and vine work. This project truly humbled me and I was honored to have been a part of their special day.
I can post this now because he's already proposed!
This beautiful couple sent me a copy of the wedding shots of the custom wedding bands I made for their special day. They look wonderful and I'm so happy to have been a part of their special day. Thank you so much Mike & Vicki. xoxoxo
These gorgeous sterling silver rings were custom made for a lovely couple for their wedding day. They are sterling silver with a hand engraved love poem. His ring contains the first two stanzas of the poem and hers the last two stanzas. I love how they turned out and my happy couple were wed on Halloween 2015 with these lovelies!
This bangle is made from 14g sterling silver wire. Each piece was cut, textured, soldered and formed one-by-one and intertwined to create this great, bold piece. I loved doing this piece and in particular, liked the challenge of getting the sizing right.
These gorgeous rubies were one of my very first custom project requests. A friend of mine had these rubies from her Grandmother and wanted something she could wear on special occasions. So, I got out my torch and the sterling silver and set these rubies in earrings for her. This was more than 7 years ago, so my skills have definitely improved since then. I see lots of things I would do differently today, but I still love how these came out.
These were custom made for me! Yes, I said me! I wanted a new pair of earrings to go with a ring I was sampling and just had to make these. Plus, I'm obsessed with purple and I had the 3mm cubic zirconia stones in lavender and thought they'd be the perfect Spring accessory.
These were handmade for my lovely Aunt Dawn in San Diego. First, I textured the bangles and polished them to a matte finish. Then, I plated them with a gold nano ceramic e-coating and will not tarnish. These are made to order to fit your hand.
This sure was great to make! I was commissioned by my good friend Kendra to make something special for her husband Marty for Christmas. He loves Clemson and needed a new belt. So... my husband and I collaborated on this project. I created the model for the tiger paw belt buckle using the ancient technique of chasing & repousse.
These were custom made for a new friend of mine, Doug... Actually for his wife, but he's the one who commissioned them. They are sterling silver and post earrings. She loves them!
This beauty was commissioned by my lovely Aunt Dawn. I incorporated her love for gardening, bling and simple beauty. I hand engraved the flower and flush set the 4mm Swarovski crystal zircon. I just love it!
These were so much fun to make! I carved the pistols in wax and cast them in sterling silver using the lost wax casting process. The entire process took 4 days to get the final earrings made, but it was well worth it.
These were commissioned by my Grandma Barbara for all of the girl grand-babies. She wanted something unique to each but similar so I thought the monograms were perfect.
This piece was commissioned for a christening of a newborn baby girl. I hand selected the crucifix from a gentleman in Florida who used a mold from his priest's crucifix to create this gorgeous, sacred piece.
Each crystal is wrapped by hand with sterling silver in accordance with a Dominican Rosary.
Pardon the quality of the image, it was a very cloudy, overcast day and I just couldn't get a very good shot of this piece.
This was a very special project. I am so honored to have been a part of such a wonderful memorial. Thank you Josh!
These two parts, (derby cover & air cleaner cover) were custom engraved with paratroopers and the 82nd Airborne Master Wings as a surprise on a Softail Trike. The wife asked me to create something for her husband. Here's what we came up with. Thank you Angie & Rob!
Here is a close up and stepped image of the master wings engraved on the Softail Derby Cover. Thank you Angie & Rob!
Here is a close up of the Air Cleaner Cover on the Softail Trike. Thank you Angie & Rob!
Mr. Messer asked for an artistic nautical star to represent the North Star for his custom motorcycle. This piece was engraved using a Lindsay AirGraver on chrome plated steel. He loves it! Thank you Dennis!
This is the companion piece for Dennis' motorcycle. This was engraved with the Lindsay AirGraver on chrome plated aluminum. Thank you Dennis!
This is a nickname created for Bill's Harley Davidson trike. This was engraved using the Lindsay AirGraver on chrome plated aluminum. Thank you Bill!
This is the companion piece to Bill's nickname. This was engraved using the Lindsay AirGraver on chrome plated aluminum. Thank you Bill!
This project is a redesign. The client's ring was dated and the setting was too tall, catching on everything. So, I melted down the old band along with some additional 10K yellow gold to create the heavier band and then lowered the original setting.
These cute little rings were made for Christmas for a special lady.
Personalized with an EKG rhythm and made by hand in sterling silver. This was a special commission.
This is the back of the special commission using the engraved EKG rhythm.
This was a special commission in memory of grandma. Made with hand engraved sentiment on stainless steel backed with hand dyed leather.
This was a very special project for special friends. He proposed! They love fairy tales, so the inside says, "you're my happily ever after" and the outside says, "true love's kiss" with the stone as the "o"! She loves it.
This is done with a process called reticulation. It makes wonderful textures on the silver using heat. The gemstone is a 6mm round aquamarine bezel set in sterling silver.
This is a custom order from a client. We took the old gold rings and pulled out the diamonds, melted the gold down and created a whole new ring and reset the diamonds.
This was a class project for my MFA program. We had to make something with gold accents and patina. I made this ring from sterling silver and used liver of sulfur at specific time and temperature intervals to create this color effect.
This is my midterm project for one of my MFA classes this semester. It's a brooch made with reticulation silver and 22K yellow gold. It's a symbol of the years I worked in a cubicle.
This pendant was created using the fusing process of miscellaneous materials around the bench. I put a liver of sulfur patina on the piece after all of the stones were set and the added prongs and bail were soldered in place.
First, I engraved a nautical star on a piece of steel and used it as a texture plate to roll my sterling silver over, creating a raised impression on the silver. I fused all of the parts together then added the Caribbean Blue Swarovski bicone dangle to offset the contrast.
This is a prototype for one of my engagement ring designs. I'm working on a series of styles for non-traditional gemstone engagement rings. I'm planning colored gemstones for the centers and will be offering these in sterling silver, white gold and yellow gold very soon.