Friday, December 23, 2011

Rudoph pendant set

Two days ago, I opened my email account and saw a very fun and inspiring post by Alyson Stanfield about the story of Rudolph but what truly caught my eye was the beautiful image she had used it had been a sketch of Rudolph by Katherine Tyrrell . I commented on twitter and she replied back and so on and it suddenly hit me what would Rudolph look like in enamel? So here he is folks, Rudolph in cloissone enamel on copper. In this photograph I have just finished laying the wires down on copper with a base coat of flux prior to its trip in the furnace.  

Here he is with a his colours all wet-packed (placed on the piece with the help of a brush) on and waiting for the temperature in the furnace to be just around a cozy 750 degress C :D 
I gave him a more natural brown and I think maybe his nose could have been bigger but guess he can show Santa the way just fine with this one :) Here he is with a matched set of holly earrings just for that extra Christmas feel !

Rudolph pendant with holly earrings, Vitreous enamel on copper
© 2011 Nayna Studios™

Thursday, December 22, 2011

DIY tips! Make your own tools !

A flower stand re-used as file stand
One of the perks of being a jewellery artist for that matter an artist working in any medium, we all get to be pack rats and actually call all that stuff  ' Tools & Equipment' :D Just kidding, but if I look at my studio which I now have for more than a year it has changed drastically with so many more 'Tools and Equipment' than what I started out with. Not all of it is the expensive-bought-from-that-amazing-tool-place kind, in-fact quite a few of the small stuff is actually recycled form its previous existence as a mundane object into a specialty tool ! I would like to share a few such pieces with you today,  one such is my mother's old flower stand. This is basically a stand which sits inside a flower vase and individual flower stems are stuck into each groove, allowing the flowers to stand upright. Well I am not really the flower arranging type so well, I simply arrange my hand files into it and voila! they can be found at a moments notice! ( Not that my jeweler's bench is messy you understand :D )
         This next one is a bit of a DIY project , if you live in Mumbai and own a furnace, and unless your furnace manufacturer has been kind enough to provide a firing rack, you are on your own ! Well I lucked out in this case, a steel and iron mesh guy in the city had some of this perforated steel mesh scrap left over and gave it to me for about a hundred bucks and yours truly simply fit it in the bench vise and hammered the sides to create legs :) Unfortunately I have not been able to find some smaller scrap for my jewellery furnace :(

Most jeweler's I know usually use something more delicate for their soldering needs, well I not like most jewelers as you know, I am first and foremost a metal artist, so instead of a small firing pad, I use a left over fire brick from some repairing that was done on my furnace door a few years ago. :) This really helps in alleviating neck strain while soldering all those tiny findings.

    I currently own a set of jump ring dowels, but back when I had no idea that such a tool even existed this was my makeshift dowel, The sawed off portion of our old 14 " TV antenna :D Yup your read that correct, this little device really bailed me out. With LEDs and Plasma TVs antennas are out but the old devices used to have this hollow pipe set which was essentially a set of four pipes of different dimensions set in such a way that you could extend the antenna to the required height.

   Last but not least a set of DIY wooden mallets, I am particularly proud of, I made these back in my college days using believe it or not a rolling pin! My father found a really nice rosewood rolling pin and I simply cut it in three parts and had a college peon attach handles to the center of the mallet heads and there you go custom mallets ! They were such a hit one was even flicked by an old college mate :P
Now that I recall it was my professor's idea to use the rolling pin, it's been fifteen years and they are still extremely useful !

 A parting tip, can't get small enamel spoons at your local supplier's use my idea start saving all the tiny stirrers that nice coffee houses give with their take away or even cup coffees. P.S. Mc Donald's is my favorite !

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Eye of the storm

The Eye of the storm, Vitreous enamel, copper wire
© 2011 Nayna Studios ™
The central motif of this cuff is among some of the enameled medallions in various shapes that I keep creating and then get completely stuck as to how to go about setting them. This particular piece had actually been done with its last firing about a y ear and a half ago! I would periodically take this one out and wonder as to how I was going to set it and then again end up putting it back completely at a loss for ideas. Then one day two weeks back out of the blue I suddenly had a thought that this little piece would perfect as a cuff and thus this final piece was created! 
 My father seems to think it looks like a contemporary large dialed watch !! I truly hope not :D !!
The Eye of the storm, Vitreous enamel, copper wire
© 2011 Nayna Studios ™

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Two sided pendant

Two sided pendant,Copper and Vitreous enamel
©2011 Nayna Studios™
Two sided pendant, reverse side
I had worked on the  central enameled cab of this piece about six months ago, but a suitable setting simply eluded me! I tried to create a simple bezel with added prongs for security but this simple did not work for me aesthetically speaking and I let the cab sit in my 'to be set later' box (its an old ice-cream box just to make it more fun :P) while I went on with other projects. But recently It struck me to make the setting so that it could be worn on both the sides. So the counter enamel got a coat of blue and a pierced backing to the setting.
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