Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Peony Jewellery

Here is a sneak peak at my latest line. I can't wait to introduce you to my full blooming peony jewellery this weekend at the Peony festival in Oshawa. I think I will call it "forever blooms" but I am not 100% certain as of yet. I will be adding these and all my jewellery on ETSY, or some other venue in the coming months. It is allot of work, but because I won't be doing many shows this summer, I thought I'd at the least get it all online. So, without further ado, may I present to you forever blooms!
a more traditional style with a tail of crystals
side view to show some more detail
modern drop finish. I will have about 5 of these available.

view from above, shows how you would see it while wearing it

another birds eye view of the three full blooms

not peonies, but similar pink flowers with modern ear hooks, all solid sterling silver too

made with a tail too, but shorter and works well on a choker chain, only one available

Friday, June 5, 2015

fourth day of peony trials

Hey, I think I have solved the peony puzzle! Three different canes were pulled, the careful layering of dots, I think 12 in total for each flower, then three flowers per bead, and then covering all the opaque glass with the final encasing. It is not that easy and many techniques are used. Not that I am any kind of a glass master, far from it, but these do take a fair bit of skill to make. These here have a tiny bit of glass scum, but I think they still look pretty good, even from the side view, shown on the far right. Okay, heading to make some more, and hopefully I'll catch the scum before it gets added. This new line will be my "always in full bloom" series. If there is any interest, I will make a PDF. Click on the photo to get a real up close of the detail.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Peonies, Peonies and even some glass Peonies...

Hello and welcome to summer 2015! Seems we keep vacillating between spring's cooler weather and a really hot summer day. So when its been cooler outside, I've been working away on some new glass cane and then I made these beads. I had a bit of a "proud feeling" to have found these in the kiln the next day because it seems I had found a solution for the wavy petals. I made another cane for the middle part as well. I love how they turned out. They really do look like peonies. Of course I'll never be as perfect as Blaschka! His amazing glass plants were used for botany study at Harvard and were commissioned by the Ware family. Leopold and his son worked their entire lives, yes, I'll repeat, their entire lives, 24 -7 making tiny replications of the wonders of nature. It is definitely on my bucket list to see these collections one day, and the links above are great sites of his work for you to see.

Here my peonies are made with 3 layers of petals and clear glass between each to give it that 3-D affect. The middle gets pushed inwards and hence that perfect little bubble of trapped air. They will eventually be made into finished jewellery pieces, but first I will need many more. Now that I see how they turned out, I'm inspired to continue. For now, I just wanted to share a tiny bit of the new work I've been doing. What makes it special is that they are specifically made for this upcoming outdoor venue I will be doing in a couple of weeks!

I will be at the 11th annual Peony Festival located in the beautiful Oshawa Valley Botanical Gardens on June 13 and 14th from 10:00am to 4:00pm on both days. I will be inside my white canvas tent within a small group of about 20 vendors, so I won't be too hard to find. I haven't done an outdoor show in ages, so please pray for nice weather for those two days. Until then, I don't mind the cooler weather and working on a hot torch. It is not a show I've done before, but I have heard wonderful things about this venue, and I also love gardens.

I find gardens are great places for the soul. Simply just breathing-in all the luscious smells of those peonies sold me, and I bought my application right on the spot. Honestly, I do realize that the show is mostly about the Peonies, the gardens, and the award ceremonies. But just in case, I thought I might stir some curiosity with my own glass peonies. I found it to be a bit of a challenge but I love making flowers. It's really natures ultimate aesthetic isn't it? I had been working on this new cane to emulate the petals of the peony flower. I've made a few of them so far that are pictured here, and now that the cane is made, I'll go ahead and make more. I'm looking forward to this show, to be in the gardens, meeting new people and also seeing some familiar faces. Luckily, there is now an art contest, so I guess I will be entering these there as well.
Here is one sample from another new set I've also been working on. It is a sample piece from a commission that I delivered yesterday. I think I'll name this collection "for the love of flowers."

Just sharing

Just sharing my love of flowers. One day last week, I made about 7 hearts in a 6 hour day. All the cane was prepared ahead the day earlier. I took breaks, but when you are on a roll and its going well, its going well. You have to pay attention all the time, you need to know your steps of what you are doing and you must be in control of the glass. I had a mini breakthrough and discovered a new trick for the bail and I will use it forever! Just something so simple, but made all the difference in the world, and that is to prepare a bump where it will attach first.
I will show you the peonies I did today later on. They are also very labour intensive and the beads are large, well allot larger than what I normally work with. I always think about the end result and how heavy it would be to wear, so they definitely won't be good as earrings, but we'll see. Anyways, I added yet another center cane, a yellow stamen, and it turned out beautiful. So these will have three layers of petals, with clear in-between each petal and two more canes added. However, we'll see when I pull them out of the kiln tomorrow morning. Perhaps I'll snap a picture of them right there in the kiln before they get cleaned, but I won't say more because tomorrow is another day.