Thursday, March 21, 2013

Fleur-de-lis Earrings by Dana Evans

Today I finished a pair of new earrings and I thought I'd give you all a sneak peak....

They include a pair of Australian opals I got in Tucson last month- I knew just how I wanted to use them!

The sketch on the left is of a pair of earrings I've been wanting to make for a while- this sketch is probably over a year old. Just didn't have the stones yet to make them. Here they are- I'm assembling the parts. The wire at the top is 16 ga. square Argentium silver that will have some balls fused to it. I already made the bezels for the stones, and took a while creating the paper template for the bottom fleur-de-lis shape. I fuss a lot on templates because I want to get it right. This was my 3rd or 4th one, and I still fussed to get it just right.

Here I fused the balls onto the square wire and traced/cut out the silver fleur de lis shapes at the bottom. I'm trying the stones out, but of course I remove them when I solder things together...

After this step, I needed to solder the bezels to a back plate.....

Which I did here.... I also cut out most of the backs of the stones (because they're transparent) but left a seat. Additionally I left little tabs on the tops and bottoms of each bezel so the fused wire and fleur-de-lis pieces could be soldered onto them and join all pieces together. Before I did this, however, I soldered an earwire to the back of each fused wire segment to be folded later on...

Here they are above ready for keum-boo. I cut a pattern of what shape I wanted, used that to transfer to the gold foil, and cut them out. I put them on my electric burner and burnished the foil so it 'stuck' to the silver. (see my earlier post on keum boo for more info!)

And here are the oxidized finished pair. I discovered that it was challenging to hammer/punch close these bezels because they had some of the elements soldered to them, which stiffened them quite a bit. In the future I will use thinner-walled bezels if I have elements soldered to them.

I'm not putting these in my Etsy store just yet- I'm keeping these for the Ratner show next month!!

You can see more at my website:

Monday, March 18, 2013

A series I'm working on: leaf earrings- inspired by a cluster of leaves my daughter found in the parking lot at the new Denver Ikea. She held up the leaves and said, "Mommy! You should make earrings like this!" She's a great idea girl! She's since made me a list of 24 other inspiring things I can use to make earrings.  7 year-olds have some of the best ideas! (Be on the lookout for Candy Corn earrings soon!!)

Odaybea's most recent work: 925 silver ring with South Sea Pearl

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Ratner Museum Show

The Ladysmiths will be showing and selling their work at The Ratner Museum this April 27-28. Please see the postcard below. Click it for a larger image, it will open in a new window. Last year was such a huge success we are expecting this year to be even better. There are 12 of us this year.  We are lucky gals to have this opportunity! If you live in the DC Metro Area please come by! If you are planning a visit to DC this would be a fantastic show for you! It's never too late to start holiday shopping. (and you won't find these items mass produced because they are all hand made)

Carolyn's latest work in progress
(these will be rings and pendants when finished)

We recently met to discuss marketing. Most of the focus was on Etsy, everyone had some great tips to offer, Evie brought an array of very forward-looking jewelry business cards from a recent show. Karen showed us some creative marketing books, Bodil shared what it's like to sell from B&Ms (brick and mortar stores). Sharon was very up on all the Etsy changes for sellers and buyers. Let's just say we all couldn't stop talking!
 (Carolyn hosted this time around)

Also, some of the ladies have been taking a wax carving class at The Art League in Alexandria, VA. I'm sure there will be some great results to post here.