That time …

15 04 2016

Remember that time …

… that time when I was happily making woven earrings

the good old days [image not to be reproduced without author permission]

the good old days [image not to be reproduced without author permission]

This group was for an exhibition at Studio 20/17 … back in the day.

Ah memories…





Repair -v- remake

10 04 2016

You may know the dread … when you receive an email (or call) from a gallery you sell jewellery through, that a piece has come in for ‘repair’. Horrid scary word: repair.

I received just this request recently from the most excellent Lord Coconut … a client had brought in a pair of my Onyx cufflinks which had broken after only a few wears.

The horror. As this pair was in my first collection for the gallery, I had visions of my soldering to be to blame. I had visions of all my cufflinks needing to be repaired (an overreaction, but it happened).

Weirdly, it seems that the failure was actually the base of the (manufactured) bezel. Though it must be said that it was a relief that it wasn’t my soldering.

In fact, the part of the bezel base that failed was where I had soldered (seemingly magnificently) the cufflink stirrup fitting to the bottom. See in the below photograph – just completely ripped the metal away (and strangely without buckling the metal back at all); that missing little square of metal is solidly adhered to the stirrup on the now-unattached cufflink fitting.

back of broken bezel ... after I'd unset the weave and perspex (hence the mangled edge)

back of broken bezel … after I’d unset the weave and perspex (hence the mangled edge)

Totally unpredictable, and in fact I cannot even conceive that the base could be torn away like this. The metal is thin (I use manufactured bezels for these pieces; it’s the significant compromise I made/agreed to keep to a low customer-end price-point) … but still.

So anyway … I haven’t made cufflinks for over two years. I have no studio. And effectively, due to the construction of these pieces, it is a full remake, there’s no ‘repair’ about it.

You can imagine my total relief when my fabulous old studio buddy said I could pop in and use her bench and tools and things. I love awesome people.

And it all went smoothly. Well, when I say smoothly, but I did have to remake both cufflinks, as the bezel on the unbroken cufflink was higher than any bezels I had at hand – see how much wider the old, unbroken (right), bezel setting is in the image below, compared to the new (left) one. In fact, you can also see the thinness of the bezel fold on the right side of the old cufflink, that thing was at risk of failure if knocked in the wrong spot …

new on left, old on right ... note different bezel set thicknesses ... boo

new on left, old on right … note different bezel set thicknesses … boo

… so the client has a whole new set of sassy cufflinks.

Hoorah! I wish him many more years of enjoyment and wearing these.

new cufflinks (with previous weave)

new cufflinks (with original weave)





And then more…

7 04 2015

Following from yesterday :

  1. full metal weaving
  2. scroll/poster hanging
  3. cut and framed
  4. free play and pinned
    ..
  5. free play, pinned and adorned
    for the Winter Brooches‘ exhibition at Studio 20/17 in 2010; I don’t consider these pieces very successful actually, though I quite like the bar brooch at the bottom of the image

    Time: group

    Time: group

    … the ‘Quotes’ group for that exhibition were better in my eyes, as they’re less ponderous and more whimsical

    Quotes

    Quotes

  6. long weave neckpieces
    for Winter Neckpieces‘ exhibition at Studio 20/17 in 2011; these I love!

    For William

    For William

    For Caroline

    For Caroline

  7. gem and bezel set
    for Oh Opal!‘ at Redox Gallery (and then Studio 20/17) in 2012; this was the start of a series of experiments with bezel setting; these, being the first experiment, didn’t have perspex on the top … that was to change for future work (to make them more durable)

    group

    ‘Oh Opal!’ group

    …which I then extended in the ‘My Australia’ exhibition in 2013

    My Australia group; image not to be reproduced without permission

    My Australia group

  8. simple bezel set
    for ‘The Love of Coffee‘ at Studio 20/17 in 2012

    Coffee group

    Coffee group

    then for Deck the Walls‘ at Studio 20/17 in 2012; I think they tired of my weaving (and that they didn’t sell; it’s labour intensive and therefore not inexpensive), so this was the last collection of work for this lovely gallery

    Summer group; image not to be reproduced without permission

    Summer group

    then cufflinks for Lord Coconut; including a platinum commission

    Platinum Commission

    Platinum Commission

    … again though, the bezel setting is similar to the cut-and-frame work; I’m still not quite content with how it seems to be trapping the material, constraining it, making it ‘less’ somehow; pretty clearly I haven’t yet figured out what is actually my problem with it!

I wonder what will happen next.

[no photographs in this post to be reproduced without explicit permission of the author]





And then…

6 04 2015

It seems I have a penchant for tracing things back to their origin … you know when a conversation has veered off on some kind of tangent, after we’ve exhausted that little escapade I then like to track back to how we got there.

So, I have a need to see how my weaving developed … and in the process hopefully uncover some hidden tangents that perhaps I could explore further.

After the initial weaving tests I posted about previously, I then tried out :

  1. full metal weaving
    RMIT Yr1 project; not terribly successful, and I didn’t continue with it

    necklace; original image by Mark Kral; not to be reproduced without permission

    necklace; RMIT Yr1

  2. scroll / poster hanging
    RMIT Yr1 project; oh dear, look at the kinky silk thread, how embarrassment! (blame first year keenness to get the photograph taken, and naivety in not knowing how to get the folds out); I may experiment with this format again

    scroll pendant; original image by Mark Kral; not to be reproduced without permission

    scroll pendant; RMIT Yr1

  3. cut and framed
    RMIT Yr1 project; I love this pendant; however the only thing that didn’t quite sit well with me with this format is that the weave is cut to a frame … somehow it made it just a disembodied material, instead of a whole; I’m unlikely to do this again (though, never say never)

    Year 1, Semester 2, Machinery project; paper and silver

    Machinery project; RMIT Yr1

  4. free play and pinned
    RMIT Yr2 project; this was fun, I experimented a lot in this project with colour and widths and introducing new threads in the weave and taking them away … just joy; and this is where I left the weaving for a few years, I didn’t use it again during the remainder of my degree

    black fancy ring; image not to be reproduced without permission

    black fancy ring; RMIT Yr2

    …though I did return to it for the Feast‘ exhibition at Studio 20/17 in 2009

    Nana's Trifle Recipe

    Nana’s Trifle Recipe

More tomorrow … this has turned out to be a longer trip down memory lane than I expected.

[no photographs in this post to be reproduced without explicit permission of the author]





In the beginning…

3 04 2015

I’ve previously written about the first project in which I made the woven silver-paper element I’ve been working with for years now.

Recently, inspired by my strong connection to Emma Fielden’s work, I’ve revisited the visual diary and research from that project … and started perhaps to toy with new ideas.

This is my first working example of the weaving, from way back in 2004 … I tried to figure it out in paper first, then a (I now think rather terribly awful!) attempt in cloisonné wire.

first weaving play; image not to be reproduced without express permission

first weaving play; image not to be reproduced without express permission

Humble beginnings.

My lecturer at the time was especially taken with the paper weaving …. what do you think?





My pieces for RMIT Auction 2014

14 07 2014

So the decision has been made.

This year I’ve donated two pairs of earrings to the RMIT Object-based Practice Gold & Silversmithing 2014 Auction:

donate_noflash

without flash

donate_flash

with flash

I like the back of them too.

In fact, a friend I made a bespoke pair for re-bent the ear wires to wear them ‘backwards’ – which in fact looks even more excellent.

donate_flatwhite

Flat White

donate_miami

Miami

Check the details of the RMIT Auction on their tumblr here – get donating and/or get buying!

[Please note: all images in this post not to be reproduced without permission]





Which to donate?

4 07 2014

The RMIT Jewellery Auction – officially named the RMIT Object-based Practice Gold & Silversmithing Jewellery Auction (and breathe) – is coming up in early August. Hoorah.

And so it is time to decide what to donate.

As regular readers know, I’m taking a break from making right now – so I’ll be choosing one of my already-made earrings.

Either one from the ‘Coffee’ series

'Coffee' ; image not to be reproduced without permission

‘Coffee’ ; image not to be reproduced without permission

or the ‘Summer’ group.

Summer group; image not to be reproduced without permission

‘Summer’; image not to be reproduced without permission

Decisions. Decisions.

Check out the donations on their tumblr blog.

Are you donating? Would you like to? If so, please make sure you contact the RMIT department; or send me an email and I’ll forward you the donation request email (with all details etc). Donations to be received by 16th July.