Friday, July 25, 2008


I have spent some time lately evaluating the creative journey that has led me to make jewelry. Early experimentation led me to wire wrapping and I haven't looked back.

I am a researcher. Google led me to Preston Reuther...the Master Wire Sculptor himself. Preston's videos and DVDs provided hours of instruction..........and a great deal of encouragement. I love his flowing wire work with it's graceful loops and swirls that show a stone or cameo to it's best advantage.

I am a reader. The Saratoga public library led me to Bead on a Wire by Sherilyn Miller. This book is probably the best reference for beginning wire artists. Sherilyn's technique is impeccable and I found myself unlearning quite a few self taught bad habits.

I am a peruser of magazines. A jewelry magazine allowed me a glimpse of a piece made by Eni Oken. Eni's beautiful and intricate pieces are amazing.
These 3 artists have given me so much inspiration. Their generosity in teaching their methods is a blessing to us all.

Here are some of my efforts. You can see the teaching of my virtual mentors in the work.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Copper Wire Work

I have been making a lot of jewelry pieces in copper lately. There are many reasons for this not the least of which is the very high price of silver and gold. Using copper keeps my costs down which translates to more affordable prices for my jewelry.

I like copper. I wore a lot of it in the 70's when it was very popular for jewelry.

It is a very versatile metal. You can leave it bright and shiny like new pennies or oxidize it to the dark brown of comfortable old loafers.

It is soft to work with allowing you to make really great swirls and spirals, and it work hardens nicely when hammered or tumbled.

Copper jewelry is said to help ease the aching joint pain of arthritis.

Copper is also a great energy conductor so when used to wrap a natural stone it enhances that stones metaphysical properties.

Occasionally people express concern about copper turning their skin green. This is a possibility. When some people sweat they excrete a chemical which when combined with the copper makes a green colored salt. That salt can rub off on your skin giving it a greenish appearance. The color washes off with soap and water. It is not harmful and is not an "allergic" reaction.
The Statue of Liberty is green due this oxidation process, caused by the combination of heat and exposure to salt water.

I have created several pieces of jewelry using copper and sterling silver that demonstrate the shiny "bright penny" side of copper. This effect is particularly stunning in chain maille designs.

Worry stones and fossils that are wrapped in copper have been oxidized to allow the stone to be the focus of the piece.

You can view more of the copper collection on online at our ETSY store.

Better yet come visit us in person at our weekend store At The Warehouse 20 Learned Street in Albany, New York......right behind the Miss Albany Diner, close to Huck Finn's Warehouse and "Nipper" The RCA dog.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

New York, New York its a Helluva Town

I couldn't help it. 2 days in the City and that's the song that kept running through my head. I think it was the fear of getting lost...even though Fred and I had our trusty walking map of Manhattan.
We walked and walked and walked the West Village. Melissa really liked those tree lined neighborhoods. and she found a real British tea shop.
Fred went to a Yankee game. It's the last year of the current Yankee Stadium so he wants to get to as many as he can.
We went to Micky Mantles for lunch. The food was great and the atmosphere couldn't be better for a sports fan. The sports memorabilia was top notch. Every chair had a number 7 carved into the back of it. In the "It's a small world department" , our waitress was a Shaker girl from Latham!
We walked through Central Park on a hot Summer Day. Just the south end really on the West side. Every time I see the Park and everyone who is enjoying it I am reminded of what a genius Frederick Olmsted was.
We went to the Museum of Natural History where I took the opportunity to make many sketches of jewelry pieces and design ideas. I can't wait to pull out my beads and start turning them into showcase items for The FamiLee Jewels.
We were tired and footsore but happy coming home to Malta last night.
I think Melissa is going to love living there.
We will love having someone to visit in New York.
New York, New York...........