Thursday, June 28, 2012

ECLIPSE - Lampwork and Forged Copper Necklace

Hi All,

Today's work is a combination of yesterday's work and my newly acquired metalsmithing skills.

I've always loved making my lampwork disks but just wasn't sure what to do with them other than make earrings and because I had no jewelry making skills, almost whatsoever, I didn't know how to be creative with them other than hanging them on ready made ear wires from Michaels.  Not that that is bad.  It just isn't where I want to be at this point.  I want handmade "sterling silver" metalsmithed by me ear wires now.  I'm so proud to have kicked it up a knotch.  BAMMMM!  ;o)

These disks are made with a special Double Helix glass that turns colors in the flame called "Raku" (beautiful - much more beautiful than in the picture).  I rolled the edges in another color changing frit and Viola!  these beauties emerged.

Now - out comes my 14 gauge, pure copper, wire which I hand antiqued.  I drew a bead on each end of the wire after threading on heshie beads to hold the wire in place in between the lampwork disks.  Then I began twisting and pounding the wire for a beautiful branchlike effect.  Bent the wire lop sided so the disks would hang uneven and the necklace immediately reminded me of the rare eclipse of the Sun and Venus recently.  I couldn't resist naming the necklace to commemorate this fantastic happening in our Universe.  I hope you all caught a glimpse of it.

I'm a happy camper today because I also took my California driver's license written test and PASSED the first time.....Now, I can continue with my life.  haha


Monday, June 25, 2012

HIDDEN IN THE BERRIES - Hand Forged Copper Enamel Earrings


Hi All,

Seems like forever since I've posted.  But, I've been so busy collecting materials and gathering new metal smithing skills in order to bring you these new designs in Copper, Enamel and Sterling Silver.

No kidding, I've been working and so excited about this whole process I've met myself coming and going.  Finally, this morning, I birthed this pair of earrings.  I have to tell you, I feel very sexy and hip with them on.  I have many more in the making so keep posted and I will too.

The process is more, well I can't say more than forming molten glass around a mandrel, balancing by gravity, mixing colors and materials into the glass and coming out with a bead.  But is is certainly a welcome addition to my lampwork beads which will be incorporated into my new jewelry making skills.

First, I etch a copper sheet with a favorite design.  This includes Ferric Chloride an etching solution used in printmaking.  Once the design is etched in the copper, I begin cutting disks and various other shapes and sizes for use in the jewelry in this case earrings.   Then the disk goes to a dapping tool to make it a sort of spoon shape, for interest.  A hole is then drilled in the middle of the disk with my new Drill Press - I can't believe I have a drill press of my own.  Yay!

Second, I drill a hole in the smaller disk and take it to my torch where I dip in powdered glass called enamel and melt it onto the copper (3x) which gives a vibrant color to the disk laying against the copper shield shown in picture.  And the element I like most about the earrings, glass on metal.  Yay!

Now comes the Sterling Wire.  A bead is drawn on the wire at one end by holding it in the blue flame portion of the torch flame.  Then it is polished to remove oxidation from the flame (not too much - I like a little oxidation.  Makes it look forged - which it is!).  Two heshie beads (brass) are strung first on the Sterling Silver wire, then the enameled disk, the the copper disk and fashioned into a loop connected to a jump ring.

Another piece of Sterling Wire is then forged by chasing hammer and bent around a pencil to make the nice shape (simple huh).  Attaching now to the jump ring and Viola! a wonderful pair of hand forged earrings for sale on Etsy in about 20 minutes.

All for you to look beautiful and at the same time support "UpRising Yoga" bring healing to (CSEC) Commercially Sexually Exploited Children.  40% of my proceeds is donated for its continuance and growth.

UPRISING YOGA - for more information go to  -

Love you all - won't stay away so long this time...


Friday, June 8, 2012

UpRising Yoga

UpRising Yoga...

40% of the proceeds of my glasswork and jewelry is donated to a program in Los Angeles called "Uprising Yoga". UpRising Yoga is a organization bringing yoga to At-Risk Youth. They are currently teaching in Juvenile Hall and creating a program in Los Angeles County for CSEC (Commercially Sexually Exploited Children).

Their mission is to create an empowering program to heal at-risk youth, for a safe place to confidently conquer challenges.

These beautiful women are very special to me.  They are teachers and students (including me) at Bikram Yoga Manhattan Beach.  The beautiful blond on the far right side is Tiffany Friedman, owner of the studio where I practice Bikram Yoga and also have my lampwork glass jewelry "Yogi Wraps" etc. for sale.  In the middle is  Rajashree Choudhury, an international yoga champion and wife of the founder of Bikram Yoga, Bikram Choudhury and their daughter,  Laju.  We were all in attendance at a benfit gathering for "UpRising Yoga" described above, in downtown Los Angeles, Wednesday evening.  

I'm so proud to be part of this group who is so giving of themselves to benefit these children in our city.  Hopefully, this is a program that will spread to other cities worldwide.

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