Thursday, February 26, 2015

Tool Porn!

Nothing so sweet as the best tool in your hand for the job you want to do.  Kevin's products raise the making of tools to artisanship.  Go see!  I am overwhelmed with desire for his jeweler's die press.  And then there's the beautiful saw frame with the pink grip.  Ahhh!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Bees Upon The Flowers


A handwrought steel fibula suspends a reliquary fashioned from the pages of an mid-19th c.children's book, sandwiched between two layers of tin reclaimed from a Chinese tea cannister. It is held in place using a marlinspike knotting technique called "mousing," that I learned from Keith LoBue, with waxed baker's twine threaded through tube rivets which also hold the assemblage in place.  Beneath that, a pair of antique mercury glass bugle beads on red silk.  I love the way the beads have patchy mirroring that is highlighted by the silk that shows through the places where it has flaked away; it seems to resonate with the foil on the printed tin.  The reliquary contains an embroidered bee I made, some silver glass beads that move around, and an engraved illustration from the story book.  I layered mica over the chamber and then poured resin over the mica for some magnification.

A beekeeper friend, Alan Hawkins, tells me that yesterday was the feast day of St. Gobnait, the patron of bee keepers.  I'm right on time, for once!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Seven Star Neckpiece

Here's a curious embellishment for the neckline.  A collarette of contemporary glass beads and found things, including milagro, measuring tape, bits of 19th c. text, end papers, a hand fashioned copper bail, a steel thing found in the street, a Victorian mourning button, and a number 7 key from an adding machine, which I expect is made of Bakelite.  Surprisingly pretty on, and when you turn it over, there's a steel engraved illustration of a little girl with her pull toy, from an 1800s children's book and my initials faintly scratched on the back of the star, by way of signing my work.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

What IS that Thang?

What IS that thang? Fancifuldevices of Etsy sent this safety pin to me along with an order. You will note a scrap of striped cloth caught in the teeth of the clamp. Near as I can figure, it's some sort of strap device, possibly from overalls, dunno, but I love it. It's brass. Marina says it is French. It has somehow bumped up against some elements that had been quite lonely until it appeared. Now it is a lapel pin for your favorite artisanal handyperson, possibly yourself, and nice for a valentine gift. Yes, you should give yourself a valentine. Click here if you want it: for only the most discriminating bricoleur, of course.

A word about the other components, a silver hand charm, apparently hand made, a bit of a propeller blade that showed up in a button box; don't know if it was part of a fan or a toy airplane, and a disc punched from a graniteware dishpan I found in the desert, rusted, crushed, and shot full of genuine cowboy bullet holes. This dear little thang just fell together while I was trying to make a bracelet. Go figure!

It is approximately 2-1/2 inches long by width of pin, about 2-3/4.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Episode Three: I Will Not Be Tarnished. Assemblage Art Flapper Necklace.

A pudding charm in an old watch case, an antique cut steel tassel, a novelty chain and a segment of an old horn rosary at the back of the neck, for comfort.  The hand made hook makes it possible to double this long necklace for a different look.  It's quite rustic, but actually quite pretty to wear.  It's one of those pieces I'll regret selling, I think.

Monday, January 12, 2015