new experience-blogging

by arands on October 4, 2008

Finally the  rainy season here in the great Pacific Northwest has arrived, which means it will be easier for me to pull myself away from my garden, which has over 50 temperamental roses, all begging for attention at one time, and to settle down in the studio for some serious work. One of my main concerns has been the high cost of metals and I have been casting about for ways to cut down on the amount of silver or gold being used, and yet not compromise my designs.  So far, the best solution I have is to set my cabochons without a backing.  I plan to solder a square wire  all around the inside rim of my bezels, set the cabochon on it, and proceed as usual.     This will work fine for round or oval stones, but square stones will pose a real problem as the wire insert must fit the bezel precisely, or there will be unacceptable gaps. 

Every so often I run into a complete mental block. I have several ways of dealing with it.  Either I begin a real cleaning of every inch of my studio, reorganizing shelves and cupboards, or else I just sit and make bezels to fit the  stones I have,or if real desperate, I make jump rings.   Usually, these activities seem to reawaken my creative side, and I will light the torch and get to work.

Best of all, I am fortunate to live just down the road a bit from the Oregon College of Art and Crafts, and have taken several classes and workshops there. When I run into a complete mental block, I sign up to learn a new technique and that gives me impetus to design new things, incorporating the new techniques.





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