Sunday, 20 November 2011

Fiber rules ...

I've been getting back to my roots lately - using fiber (mostly wool) in my jewelry.  I've also been experimenting with painted metal and, weirdly enough, these two hard and soft mediums work really well together.

I recently got hold of a copy of Torch-Fired Enamel Jewelry by Barbara Lewis (it only took about 8 weeks to arrive, even though I had it on pre-order for ages).  She has some lovely ideas and projects, I highly recommend it.  Whilst this book is really about using proper powder enamels, I wondered if I could approximate the enameled look using paints.   

Surprisingly, it was easier than I thought.  Takes a lot of patience, building up layers and sanding back to get a subtle effect but the results are great and the finish is pretty tough too.

I tried using my husband's air compressor at first to spray the paint on.  After much cursing and blocked nozzles he suggested I go and buy some spray paint (the sort graffiti artists use) from the local hardware.  I'm going to give wire bangles the paint treatment next - I'll need to field test them to make sure the finish is tough enough for wrist ware before listing.

I also got my crochet hook out this week for the first time in ages and knocked up these bangles by covering vintage metal bracelets with yarn.  I discovered some hand painted handspun wool in a local yarn shop. The beautiful colours of the different skeins (one of them is called 'clown vomit) worked so well together I wanted to find a way to use them all in the one piece.

The last bit of good news is that I discovered (or rather my daughter did) - an online photo editing software.  It's much better than Picasa, so I've given my new (hated) digital camera a reprieve ....

'til next time ...

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