Friday, May 11, 2012

What New Year's Resolution?

So, I'm pretty sure I remember sitting down with my family and making some resolutions for 2012.  I have a foggy recollection that I made some sort of resolution about making a blog post WEEKLY, or something silly like that.  Well, that resolution obviously went straight out the window!  Here it is May, and I finally got a full day in the studio yesterday.  I have some great projects to post, but just can't post new things until I get caught up with some of the pieces I've made so far this year.

Here's a sweet baby bracelet for my niece, Paisley.  The front has her name, and the back has a secret message: "love you always."  It is a sweet little piece for a sweet little niece.  Can't wait to see her wearing it!

And a simple heart charm for Zalea's friend, Aurora.  This is one of my favorites.  This heart is so small that it kept flipping out of my fingers while I was filing and sanding it.  I lost it in the garbage can so many times, I actually had to dump the trash out on the kitchen counter and dig through wrappers and pencil shavings to find it TWICE.  I need to come up with a better system when shaping pieces, but that's another story for another day.

So I have had sort of an epiphany when it comes to making jewelry.  I consider myself a hobbyist - an amateur.  I teach myself the skills I want to know so that I can incorporate them into what I already know and do.  I love my glasswork and I love the metalwork.  But I have come to a point where I have outgrown my make-shift tools and set-up.  I know what good tools can do, and I'm trying to do really good stuff with really poor tools, and I'm getting frustrated.  Like, yesterday, for example.  I was soldering some beautiful pieces (photos to come) and since I use a plumber's torch instead of a jeweler's torch, things got a little too hot and heavy and on one piece the silver got too hot (beautiful reticulation in the wrong place and completely unwanted) and on another, one of the pieces slid along with the solder leaving a "ghost mark."  I'm also frustrated with my studio set-up.  There's just too much stuff in there and I have to keep moving things to get to my supplies.  These factors are all keeping me out of the studio.  But, I have so many beautiful pieces in my mind, I just need to figure out a way to make this work because I really do love it.  I need to make time and space for it.  So, here's a good thing:  we are moving next month.  I have my eye set on a spare room that would make a perfect studio (except that the lighting is poor - something I can work around).  I think I can re-configure my stations and supplies so that they will be much more conducive to a good work-flow.  THEN, maybe then, I can break down and buy some good tools.  It would make sense if I was being productive.  I could be even more productive.

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