I've been expanding my skills, as many of you know, as of late in making my own findings - clasps, etc. out of copper, steel and sterling silver. There is a lot of work involved as you can see in Shannon LeVart's video on her blog. It looks easy as pie and I mean, after all, isn't it just a circle of copper and some wrapped wire? Yup, but what all happens to that little piece of wire before it looks like this is a whole other story. I won't go into detail because Shannon tells it all in her video.
I first found Shannon's work in the the art jewelry magazine called "Belle Armoire Jewelry". I've been following her work ever since.
The behind the scenes preparation is, antiquing in Liver of Sulfer, tumbling overnight in a tumbler to remove the black crust formed by the antiquing, hand burnishing to get that antiqued warm copper glow and then sealing the wire findings with a finish all before it even ends up in the piece of jewelry you see above. Why is handmade artisan jewelry expensive - because it is not manufactured by a machine by the millions in China. Thus, the wonderful energy these pieces of jewelry exude when wearing. I love it. I wore my new copper bracelet to yoga on Friday and I swear it made me stronger...haha no really! I could feel it - I swear.
At any rate, I love the look of this kinda western - I am from Wyoming after all - style of jewelry. And you will more than likely be seeing more it it included with my glass beads. tra la la la !
If you care to see the behind the scenes dirty low-down on making hand forged metal findings for jewelry - click on the link...