What a crazy week.

Well, School started about 2 weeks ago. As you can see it has been a while since I updated my site. Sorry about that. So lets see what I have been up to……

What’s new?

The redesign on my website ( www.kcjewelbox.com) has hit kind of a road block. I don’t want to have people clicking through a lot of links just to get to my shopping cart. I need to speak with the hosting company to see if they can help me out with something different. I am thinking that I will leave Kelsi’s Closet Jewelbox the way it is and start a new website with my name domain. Watch for updates on that a little later. I thought this would be a good idea so that my work will be associated with me, and Kelsi’s Closet Jewelbox can feature my angels and memorial jewelry and remain an honor to my sweet angel Kelsi (
www.babiesonline.com/babies/k/kelsi2005)

School

I am now taking two classes. HOW FUN! It is so nice to finally get some formal training, although we haven’t done much yet. In my morning class we had to come up with 50 drawings, 10 models and one finished piece. I think I have around 150+ drawings. That isn’t too bad since I never really drew my stuff out before. I am getting quite a bit better at drawing also. It is kind of nice. So far I have 4 models and I was hoping to have a finished piece, but it isn’t done yet. It is due on Monday so I had better get cracking.

Teaching

I taught my first class a week ago today. That was so much fun. I had 3 ladies and I taught them how to make the wire wrapped pendants. They all did a fabulous job. I am teaching my first Intro to metalsmithing a week from today. I have four students in that class. Then on the 22nd, I will be teaching at Grand River Beads. They just moved into the Silverthorne Gallery in Cleveland. I have a few students signed up already. I am very excited about that. We have some fun things planned for the classes.

New Pieces
So what have I been working on? I hae had several projects that I have been working on. One that didn’t turn out as well as I would like. I was going to use it for my “finished” piece in class, but I think I will make something else.

The first piece is the one I was going to use. It kind of looks like a little man doing a cartwheel. hahaha The cuff is a design the owner of the shop, where I will be teaching, came up with. We are going to teach it as a class as well.

Melissa Muir Jewelry  

Melissa Muir Jewelry

Melissa Muir Jewelry

Melissa Muir Jewelry

Answers to questions:

Thank you all so much for the comments you have left on my design journal. I really appreciate it. I have been asked where I learned to do all of this stuff. Honestly, I have just been playing around and hoping for the best. I did take a simple intro to soldering (like a 5 hour class) and another simple bezel setting class (again 5 hours.) That is pretty much the extent of my formal training in this. I also took a 5 hour class to learn to do the border wrap around my wire worked stones. The rest of it has just been me trying things out. The heart in the stone piece finally sold. YAY and I made another one. I will be posting it on my website just as soon as I get it photographed. I think I am going to try to make another one with doming resin instead of the glass stone I used for those. The glass stones have an irregular shape and bottom and are very difficult to work with. I will post my results when I get the chance to try it out.

In the meantime, I will be hard at work making jewelry and some metal sculpture and will be posting my progress on that as I go. So please check back often and don’t forget to check out my website http://www.kcjewelbox.com

5 thoughts on “What a crazy week.

  1. Illaya Brown

    All of your work blows me away. This cuff is stunning.
    Wished you were closer to me so I could take this class. Would you be willing to travel to Washington State for an artist retreat? Hope to have a retreat established by next summer here in the Pacific Northwest, would love to include you.

    Reply
  2. Melissa

    Thank you so much for the compliments. I really appreciate them. I would really like to hear more about the retreat. That sounds like a lot of fun. Thanks for the consideration.

    Reply
  3. Melissa

    Hi Valerie,

    This cuff was actually an experiment. I used 16 gauge copper wire. I made the frame of the cuff first. I don’t recall exactly how long the wire was, but I believe the frame was around 5 1/4″ when finally shaped. I cut multiple lengths of copper ranging from 1 1/2″ – 2 1/2″ longs. I then swirled the ends and laid them out flat inside the frame of the cuff.

    Using a butane torch and a copper brazing rod as solder, I heated the joins and soldered it together. It took a bit of practice. I ended up with a couple of “solder” blobs at first since I didn’t have the piece hot enough. When you get the joins and solder hot enough all you have to do is barely touch the metal with the brazing rod and the solder will just flow through the seam.

    Once all the joins were soldered I placed it into some warm pickle to remove the oxidation. I then used a steel oval bracelet mandrel to shape the bracelet. I hammered quite a bit with a raw hide mallet to help add strength to the piece.

    To finish it off, I dunked it in a bath of liver of sulfer, removed the high areas with steel wool and then tumbled it in my rotary tumbler. You don’t have to do the LOS part and it will come out of the tumbler beautifully also.

    To help protect the skin from turning green and touching the copper, I like to spray the piece with a clear enamel spray – like Krylon.

    This may have been more information than you were looking for, but hopefully it answers some of your questions. If you have any other questions just let me know and I will do my best to answer them for you.

    Thanks,

    Melissa

    Reply

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