Thursday, August 30, 2012

Ripple Blade Mokume Gane

The Southern Connecticut Polymer Clay Guild (SCPCG) held their bi-annual conference in late July.  This wonderful event spanned 4 days in which participants played with clay, explored new ideas, participated in various contests and activities, and enjoyed the camaraderie of like-minded friends, both old and new.
There were excellent demonstrations scattered throughout the conference, which were open to all though not mandatory, so one could pick and choose or go to everything. It could be a hard decision - continue what you were doing, or go learn about something new. What a great choice to "have" to make.

 This year, many of the demos were focused on Mokume Gane techniques, of which there are many.  Though I'd tried several approaches on my own in the past, I had not experimented with the ripple blade technique.

Libby Mills presented a clean and clear demonstration of her own refined version of this technique.  Those of us who saw the demonstration couldn't wait to get back to try it out!

Basically, there are two major patterns which emerge - zigzag stripes or a more dotted, mottled look. I played primarily with the stripes and have finally finished up a couple of pieces to share here.  When I get some "spots", I'll share those, too.

These two pendants have the zig-zag mokume gane base with the tiny dried flowers on top, all encased in resin.  I love the way the resin makes the background seem to almost move.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A Few More Feathers....

Looks like I didn't have my fill of feathers the other day....Here are a few more experiments.

 I love the 3-D effect of the leaves on the brass cuff.  This is only the second time I've tried doing something dimensional on the brass channel forms, and I really like the effect. Think I'll have to do more.

These earrings have twists and little flurrals of feathers.  While I couldn't find the word "flurrals" in the dictionary,  it just seems to fit the little fluffs that can form on feathers, so flurrals it is.

The last pair is something different, and much larger than earrings I usually make.  Stretching out of our comfort zones can be good.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Summer Feathers

Besides flowers and leaves, some of my favorite items in nature are feathers.  I used to make a lot of beaded feathers, though I haven't done so in quite a while.  The other day, I saw one of my old feathers, and decided to try making a feather cane. There are numerous methods for making feathers in polymer, and I picked one from Dora's Explorations which she posted back in 2008.

The photos here show three different color blends combined into feather canes.

The pendant has a mica shift background and the gold covered cable is a perfect compliment. 

The earrings all have some motion, especially the ones with triple leaves.

I expect I'll be experimenting with other feather caning ideas, so stay tuned. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

Tiny Dried Flower Ikat Pendants

These sweet new pendants were such fun to create!

They are made of tiny dried flowers imbedded in resin on a base of polymer Ikat canes.

 Seen in person, the detail on the flowers is  wonderful.

The resin adds a special dimension and depth that makes the little gardens inside glow.

Of course, I had to make a few earrings, too.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Two New 3-D Earring Styles!!

As you probably can tell, I really like 3-D pieces, and enjoy creating them.  It's such fun to feel the clay move and form into new shapes beneath my fingers.  Over the past week or so, I've been working on a couple of new earring designs, and I'm really pleased with the way they've turned out.

The first design I call "curved moon pillows."  These round little shapes have a small opening and indentation where the ends meet, and it creates the perfect spot for dangling decorations.  Of course, I also made some matching brass cuffs.

It was fun to play with a variety of color combinations, too.

The second design is a series of curved drops.    Actually, the curve seems to be equally "comfortable" at both the bottom or the top of the shape.  These earrings are made from a new petal cane I decided to try.

 I'm working on some larger single drops, and some which use beading.  I'll share more later.

Hope you enjoy these new pieces.