Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Two Quenches

I am amused at the technical differences between my "collections". The earrings below are from the Vintage Collection and, if you have followed this blog, you know that I incorporate vintage buttons and explore hand-pierced filigree. For me, the collection is frustrating....lots of time involved designing and sawing out these intricate patterns, lots of broken buttons from the riveting process, and lots of broken saw blades. As much as I detest the work I devote to this collection, I am repeatedly rewarded with the end product. I see my grandmother and her mother in these pieces. This collection is my homage to embroidery and sewing and I believe that my gram would be proud that I honor this tradition with my collection.

Pendant with sterling and 18k gold dots

The other collection, Dot, is an all out fun fest. The pendant above is the latest addition to Dot. The work involved is remedial...meaning a bit of soldering, a bit of hammering, minimal filing, no fancy patterns, no repetitious sawing and piercing. I form the dots by melting scrap sterling or gold, add a little boric acid while the metal is molten, quench the dots, and hammer flat. The process is a bit crude, but that's the appeal. This collection gives my brain, eyes, and hands the break it needs from my other challenging collection.
In the end, I am both collections (and I didn't even get to dissect my Armor collection!). I'm the consummate metalsmith who fusses over the tiniest blemish; I'm also the experimental artist eager to try create timeless designs. I hope you find a bit of both in my work as well!


  1. Very nice...I love your vintage buttons.

  2. jen--- love the new pieces! AND as if you didn't have enough to do--i'm "tagging" you-- so "TAG YOU'RE IT!"
    this is a creative blog award of sorts and you copy the questions on my blog and answer them on yours--when you're good and ready...

    it took me weeks to get around to it!

    but they are fun to answer--one of those late sleepless nights...

    hope your festival prep is going well... cheers!

  3. I think we all have times, or work like that. You have to have the challenges and the breaks to keep sane. It's all really beautiful!