Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Wax Carved Ring - a work in progress

Hello friends,

It's exciting to start resuming class again. It's only once a week for 3 hours, but I really look forward to it.
This term, I have been bumped up to the intermediate jewellery making class which is a little scary.

Our first project for the year is a wax carved ring. The beauty of this process is that there is very little loss of metal ( and expense) and multiple copies can be made.

I am not at all familiar with the process... but here is my understanding of it so far....

A jewelry item is made from wax by sawing/filing/carving. In our case, the class project is a ring prototype.

A mould is then made from the finished wax ring with plaster and then molten metal (silver in my case) will then be poured in to the mould. Somewhere in the process the wax is 'lost' during firing... this gives the process it's name........'lost wax carving'

The beginning of my rings. The fatter one will (hopefully) be a signet ring.

As you can see, I have not made a lot of progress! The larger one, which will be a signet ring, has been sized to my finger and partially shaped. It still requires a lot of refining... the top piece needs shaping and the ring band needs shaping and thinning out..... a lot of work ahead.

The thinner one is going to be more experimental.... holes and melty bits added to it... nice and organic... a bit of a play toy just to see what the wax can do when you have fun with it.

Well that's it for me today, hope your day is a good one.....

Sunday, January 20, 2013

I Heart Macro - cabs!

Hello friends,

Two posts in a day...  playing catch up!

Yesterday, I had a day away from preparing the house for sale and took a trip to the country for a Lapidary and gem show at Yarragon, Victoria.

I have always wanted to try and set a cab in silver but needed to buy a cab to try it! I couldn't help myself and bought a few cabs to try and also the tools that help fold/push the metal over the stone.

Next step... the silver, the bezel and the instructions.....
I have no idea if these are 'good' or not.. I just chose a few from the ones available that I liked.

Fossilised coral x 2, dendritic agate, Botswana agate, Purple Chalcedony and an Australian Garnet

Tools for pushing the edges of the metal over the cab.

Now to make the time to put these babies together!

Linking up to Lori's for I Heart Macro

studio waterstone

Cheers for now,

Focusing on Life - week 3 - relaxing time

Hello friends,

Books have always been a joy in my life. I was raised in a family of readers and writers. Reading will always be a way for me to relax and spend a bit of time to myself..  there is not a day that goes by without me spending some time with a book ( or e-book often ) these days.

A lot of the books I read these days have to do with jewellery making/silversmithing/ as that is my passion. This book is an exception... it is more for the sheer joy of looking at Angie's wonderful designs and the mix of colors she uses so well together. It is just total inspiration to me.

Front cover

How beautiful is this! Colour and design is always a challenge for me........this book is just full of beauty!

Today I am linking up to the studio sublime where Sally is hosting Focusing on Life over this year. 

Until next time,

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I Heart macro

Hello again,

I love pomegranate juice. We drank a lot of it when we visited Turkey a few years back. The fruit in Turkey were massive.. the size of grapefruits.

To open a pomegranate, score it through the centre and twist to open it. Turn it upside down and hit it with a wooden spoon and hopefully, the fruit will drop out.
The juice and seeds of the fruit are said to be a high source of vitamin C and a powerful anti-oxidant.
Some say one of the benefits is reduction of high blood pressure. 

Pomegranate seeds and shell.

Today I am linking up to I Heart Macro. Head on over and join us.... for a look at close up and macro photography.

Until next time,

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Focus on Life - week 2: my word.

Hello friends,

Why did I choose my word ?

Learning new techniques and skills has been wonderful. It's practise that will show me my voice.
I don't want to be a mirror image of someone else's style.. even though I may love that style so much I feel it could be "me".

Is it really even possible to be "original" and "authentic" these days... sometimes I wonder.
But art and the way you want to express yourself has to be limitless... Right? Right!

I know I will 'find' a 'style" that belongs to me soon. It's like that feeling where the word is on the tip of your tongue... you know you know it... it does come ... eventually... but not always straight away. But you feel  confident that it will come.. and it does... and it will! Of that I am very sure.

Today, is week two of Focusing on Life hosted by Sally at  The Studio Sublime. Our challenge this week was our chosen word for the year. I chose authenticity.

Old bakelite box and boot buttons... old originals!!

Hope you are having a wonderful day,

Monday, January 7, 2013

Getting Healthy in 2013 - week one.

Hello friends,

I spoke to a few friends pre- Christmas about this very issue. Since then, I have read some posts where people mentioned losing weight etc..... it's a thing that happens at this time of year... the gyms and weight loss centres will tell you they are inundated with women at this time of the year...or in the coming few weeks...

I am not going to join the frenzy..  I can't stand gyms.. although I have been known to go. I may still go for the Pilates class...or I may eat my words.. time will tell.

Kim from a box of chocolates, has gone one step further.. starting her blog, 'From Fat to Free' to document her weight loss journey.

I am not about to create another blog, however, I have taken inspiration from her and put a weight loss ticker on my blog side bar... just to encourage me along the way. Great idea isn't it? For those who are worried about this, it is free, and very easy to set up. You also have a choice to show/not show your actual weight as opposed to purely the amount of weight you lose.. I chose the latter.

I am going to set myself my own 2013 health and fitness aspirations and weigh up weekly.. nothing like a little public humiliation to keep me on track! Here are my personal goals for this week.

  • Reduce the amount of tea and coffee that I drink ( this will take time to give up entirely)
  • Drink at least 6-8 glasses of water each day
  • No bread for this week.
  • 2 pieces of fruit each day, one to be a citrus
  • 20 minutes brisk walk each evening
  • make sure I take my Vitamin D tablet daily
  • be positive, enjoy my day and understand that changes cannot be made overnight.
Lunch.. a great salad of salmon, avocado, tomato and salad greens with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing.

How about you.. what are you doing to feel good in 2013?

Sunday, January 6, 2013

" Mac is back" - I Heart Macro

Hello friends,

It's so great to have I Heart macro back! Thank you Lori for hosting again for another year.

Here is my contribution for today. A gift from a friend at Christmas.. she knows I am partial to both of these.......

Nice texture... but what am I...? The top.

Getting closer... have you guessed yet?

Yep, I am drawing this out bit! The middle.

The base.

Margaret knows I love both birds and paperweights( and again! )
Isn't he just so sweet. Thank you Margie.

Today I am linking up to I Heart Macro hosted by Lori at Studio Waterstone.
For those who love to take up close and macro photos.

Please do pop on over for a look... or better still, join in!

studio waterstone

Have a great day,

Saturday, January 5, 2013

A Photo a week - the dreaded self- portrait!

Hello friends,

As you can see, I have managed to make a few blog changes.... it has not been without some ( quite a lot, truthfully!) groaning and muttering. However, it is done... for now!

This year, I have decided to work on improving my photography skills. I do own an SLR camera, but tend to just use my phone and point and shoot. cameras.

The real reason for not using the larger camera is not really transportation etc.... it's because I am not confident with it.... don't understand all the bells and whistles etc.

So, to force me out of my inertial, I have joined up to participate in a photo a week joining Sally at The Studio Sublime for" Focus on Life" - 52 photos.

The first challenge is a self-portrait... not an easy thing to do...

Like many women of my age, I am not a big fan of photos of myself... it's a shock to see the wrinkles and the age spots.... the greying hair.

Oh well... grin and bear it! That's life after all!

week 1 - self portrait.

Cheers for now,

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


Hello my friends,

There is no time like the beginning of a year to make changes... this will be the first of many! All for the good, of course.

Please bear with me as I continue to make these blog changes... I am still not done yet.. and of course I may even change the changes... that's a woman's prerogative you know!

I am trying to streamline the look, and de-clutter.... starting with the blog and then moving on to the studio, house, cupboards, wardrobe, body... yes the list is endless really!

So, tell me, are any of you guys in to blog re-organisation?! I need to make a new header. I remember making the first and only!)  one and it was pretty stressful, quite truthfully. I have now moved the width of the blog... hmm that was probably not wise.. now I do not know how wide to make it! Ok.. it's a challenge I shall have to rise to.

I love the look of  blog titles with no frames at all.. However I am pretty sure that would be hard and require the use of photoshop, etc. Anyone got a quick fix for this!?

Oh well, onward and upward as they say.. got to start this new year off POSITIVELY!

Clutter to some, collection to others. Beautiful all the same. From Brabourne farm

Thanks for being understanding,

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

My Word

Hello friends,

Are you going to jump on the bandwagon and choose 'a word for a year?'

In 2012, I thought about my choice a lot... until the word chose me, if that's possible... but I am sure you know what I mean... the word really spoke to me and I felt it was a good personal choice for the year ahead. That word was 'Develop'.
I felt I did use my word reasonably well... I  did both learn and develop further some areas of jewelry making... continuing to work on refining both soldering and sawing skills and also to embrace new techniques and ideas.
Of course, the word 'Develop' is a  word that I will continue to work on this year... in fact throughout the rest of my life, really!

However my chosen word for this new year of 2013 is AUTHENTICITY.

I am hoping that as I continue this jewelry making journey, that my own style will be born.
Learning skills and techniques is well and good... but to make my work into my own style is something I hope, with hard work, may appear...something that is authentic and with a "genuine origin"...

Last year, I also attempted to take 'a photo a day'. I lasted until the end of July when the passing of my Father just knocked me for six and I didn't have the enthusiasm to continue.

I think I will give it a go again this year... it can be a lot of fun... it is very easy and yet it really makes me think a little and appreciate the special little  things that happen in my daily life each and every day. I also found I became a little more observant to the world around me... sometimes looking for that photo that would be both true of my day as well as appealing in some way.

I am posting my daily photo on 2013 Photo a day challenge - Flickr group.

Join in if you wish... I just use my phone camera... no special cameras etc are required. Just enthusiasm!
Flickr groups are easy to join and free as well.

 Beautiful feathers... today's gift.

I wish you all well for this coming, wonderful year ahead,


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