Thursday, 29 August 2013
Lots of hammering and polished took place in the studio today! Some of the bangles I showed you this morning will have cups of gold or lovebirds attached to them as orders come in, so they've been left as they were for the moment, but the square wire bangles were hammered with my favourite hammer today. I estimate that each centimetre around the bangle gets about 10 hammer strokes, so considering that the bangles are hammered on the three outside faces of the wire each bangle has approximately 700 hammer strokes - give or take!
However, I've got an extra special bangle to show you now. Rebecca came for a day's tuition at the beginning of July, but the main piece that she wanted to make was for a present for her fiancé which meant that I had to keep it under wraps for a while! They got married a couple of weeks ago and are now, I hope, having a wonderful time on their honeymoon so I can now show off what Rebecca made!
Rebecca asked the jeweller who made their wedding rings to use the remaining gold (which came from a piece of family jewellery) to make a little "kiss", and came to me to make a sleek bangle to solder the kiss onto. She hadn't made any jewellery before, and worked really hard to give the bangle a beautiful finish. Often it's the pieces of jewellery that look the most simple that need the most attention. If you give your jewellery a texture you can sometimes use that texture to cover small surface imperfections or scratches - with a smooth sleek surface there's nowhere to hide!
Of course, Rebecca couldn't show her fiancé the bangle until their wedding day and knew he would ask to see what she made, so the last hour or so of the day was spent making herself the pendant and earrings below. Again, the gold in the middle of the pendant was left over from the wedding rings. I can honestly say that out of the many many pieces of jewellery my students have made over the years, Rebecca's pendant is one of my all time favourites. It started out as a simple disc of silver, but hammering has given it such a beautful shape and texture, and as liver of sulphur doesn't affect gold the patina really works wonderfully. I love it!