Saturday, October 2, 2010

WWW retreat, day 2...

Day two began with a demonstration on fine-silver fusing. In the studio, we used a jeweler's saw to cut out jump rings made from 14ga fine silver wire. Then we all went upstairs to the kitchen to do our fusing. I tend to fuse and solder in the kitchen because I have very high tiled countertops, ideal for using a small kitchen torch. We placed firebricks on a metal sheet and then had fun trying out the Blazer micro-torch and a creme brulee torch from Williams-Sonoma. Both worked just fine for jewelry making. I have yet to make a creme brulee...
Here's one of my demo pieces, a fused fine-silver heart. Once I had fused it, I hammered the outer edges of the heart and textured the flattened areas with a small embossing hammer. The result is a pretty little charm that would look terrific on a bracelet!
Back in the studio, Sparkle watched over our activities... We went over some of the links and bead wraps that we had made yesterday, including a lengthy demo on the wrapped eye-pin loop. I love doing my retreats because they allow me plenty of time to demonstrate the same technique multiple times as needed, until everybody feels that they have mastered it.
We broke for lunch: sandwich bar, including four different types of bread, various cheeses, deli-sliced meats, ripe tomatoes and lettuce, condiments, etc. and some amazing grapes (huge and juicy), chips, and iced tea.
Cynthia and Chandra look happy with their lunch. Those sandwiches really were yummy!
After lunch, we headed back to the studio for an afternoon of fun making Faux Metal charms using Polyshrink donated by Lucky Squirrel, Lumiere paints, and rubber stamps. The charms came out gorgeous, each one different, even though we all used the same materials and tools to make our charms. Here you can see Cynthia cutting out one of her plastic pieces before she deep-embossed it.
Most of the afternoon was taken up with painting our beautiful charms, but afterward there was time to use liver of sulfur to artificially age our jewelry. Then came the tedious process of polishing our pieces with 0000 steel wool, but the result is well worth the effort.
We popped our jewelry into the tumbler and then headed off for dinner. Three of us went out to a restaurant in town, while the other three picked up a delicious veggie pizza and a bottle of wine. That was just perfect. We ended the evening with a big plate of homemade cookies. Time for bed!
Happy wrapping,


eM said...

oohhh..would love to pick up some soldering skills!
do you also do filligree stuff?

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