Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Sunshine and Smiling Faces

Last weekend turned out better than I could have imagined with sunny skies, mild temperatures, and oh so many friendly and familiar faces!  I wanted to share some highlights from the weekend, and a few snapshots.
Here I am with the booth all set up, ready to rock-n-roll.

One of my very sweetest customers, Sarah, wearing "Anemone".  It was great to see her!

Leslie modeling her new bling!
My friend, Robbi , of Lost Girl Metalworks in her booth opposite mine.
These are just a few highlights from a great weekend.  Be sure to check out Robbi's work on her website at: http://www.lostgirlmetalworks.com.  Robbi and I met in a metalsmithing class at Syracuse University a few years ago and her work has continued to develop into a very awesome, edgy, and modern collection.

Next weekend you can find me in Rochester again at the Park Avenue Festival.  Wish me luck and visit if you can!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Argentium Silver

Today I completed a fun experiment and I'm very pleased with the result!  I made my first cuff bracelet with Argentium Sterling silver.  Argentium combines fine silver with metalloid germanium instead of the traditional alloy of fine silver and copper that is commonly referred to as "sterling silver".  Ok I realize I'm getting a bit technical here, but sometimes it's good to educate folks.  You see, silver in its pure form, like gold, is too soft to hold it's form well for most purposed.  For instance a cuff bracelet made of fine "pure" silver would become bent out of shape and scratched in no time at all.  So....as is the case with gold, alloying silver with small percentages of other metals takes care of this problem and provides the silver with work-hardening qualities that make it more durable.  Each alloy has its own qualities.  Traditional sterling has some problematic qualities, primarily fire-scale, and tarnish.  Fire-scale is a discoloring of the metal that results from heating it.  In a piece that involved multiple soldering applications, it can become almost impossible to prevent fire-scale completely.  As my work has developed and I have become a virtual soldering fiend, I have struggled with this quite a bit.  So......today I finished this piece, and was ecstatic with the finish and complete lack of fire-scale!  The silver still allows for deliberate oxidation where it is applied, but will tarnish much slower over time and retain a brighter color.  So, now that you know way more than you ever wanted to know about silver alloys, here it is!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015


The spiral is symbolic in many cultures and appears in artwork dating as far back as the neolithic period.  The spiral is symbolic to many religious as well and can be found in burial sites of the celts, in Buddhism, and in ancient goddess religious.  Perhaps what is most astounding though is the perfect geometry of the spiral in nature.  These ammonite fossils are fine specimens of one of nature's most awesome designs.
These pieces will be for sale this weekend at the Syracuse Downtown Arts Festival.  You can find me on Jefferson St. at booth E-10.  Stop by and say Hello!

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Little Pretty Things and the Syracuse Arts Festival

This coming weekend you can find me at the Syracuse Downtown Arts Festival.  I've never done this particular show before, but in the past I have always been pleasantly surprised and flattered by the support I've found in our little Syracuse community.  I look forward to seeing many familiar faces and plan to have an overall good time!
When I'm designing new pieces I find they can usually be described in one of three ways:  little pretty things, pretty ugly things, and pretty interesting things - narrative works that have much research put into them.  The latter are by far my favorite things to make, but they typically take many days to design and construct.  Pretty ugly things would describe my spiders and other insects.  They are super fun to make.  Then there are little pretty things.  Everybody once in awhile just needs something little and pretty to bring a smile or brighten up the day for a loved one.  Little pretty things need not be boring, in fact I hope to always produce work that is unique and inspired, whether it is a simple earring set or a more involved art piece. As a jewelry artist, I try to maintain fluidity in my work and move between different modes of creativity to keep things interesting, for both myself and my awesome customers.  On that note, I hope many of you have the chance to come by this weekend and see what's new from my little studio!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Corn Hill Arts Festival

This weekend you can find me at the Corn Hill Arts Festival in Rochester, all day Saturday and Sunday.  This will be an adventure, as I have never done this show before, nor have I ever attended it!  I'm curious and hoping for the best.  The weather forecast is awesome so it should be a great weekend to come out, and I hear they have great music too.  Check out the link at the right for more info...
Here are a couple pendants I completed today and will have with me this weekend.
Kyanite and spectrolite set in sterling.

Plume agate in sterling.