My wife is one of those people who always has some hobby or other on the go. I may have mentioned this before. I may also have mentioned that she tends to jump in with both feet, and that the results are often highly impressive.
Recently she signed up for a silver art course at the National Glass Centre. The course was a mixture of traditional silver working, and silver art clay. The clay is a suspension of pure silver in clay that can be moulded and then fired, burning away the clay to leave just fine silver (99.9% pure in fact; purer than sterling silver.) Obviously the materials are quite expensive but Janet being Janet she now has a fair bit of silver clay, several tools, a number of books on the subject, and a butane-powered mini-blow torch. Oh yes.
She’s not much on wearing earrings but she does wear necklaces and bracelets so made a number of items of jewellery along those lines.
I think the pendants are fantastic. All the pendants were done with silver art clay; the leaf design was her own and the piece has been oxidised and then polished to give the antique, slightly coppery look with the polished silver showing through on the highlights. The other pendants are unoxidised silver with a lot of polishing. The gems are synthetic.
She also did a bit of conventional silver working on a ring and a bracelet. The ring probably doesn’t look like much but when you’ve seen it as a wonky and rather dejected-looking bit of metal and then suddenly it looks like a machine-worked ring you have to be slightly impressed. The bracelet was apparently much simpler to create than it looks, and turned out so well she’s been wearing it to work!
Janet’s very critical of all of these, naturally, and sees only the flaws in them, but I’m genuinely impressed with the results. I know I always say this, but it’s true!