Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Engineering jeweller?





This pendant is made from polymer clay, with some flower cane slices and crystals added. The challenge, every time, is to make the thing your working on, wearable. Practical. That's where the engineering skills come in. How do I attach this pendant to a necklace? How and where do I position the bail? It's got to look good and also be strong.
Take the challenge of this flower for instance. Nice idea, to make bold purple flower petals. The question was how to get them all together in a flower shape, how to make them stay in the desired position. Then there's the issue of the back of the pendant. Ok, so I figure out the getting together of the petals. But, to sell it, it has to look good at the back as well. Challenging, but fun, especially once it starts working.
This polymer clay butterfly presented more engineering, structural challenges. Questions were, do I use clay for little feelers, or wire. Will the wire look to harsh? I wanted to add a gemstone dangling from the butterfly but first I had to make it strong enough to carry the weight of the stone.

I am convinced after making jewelry full-time for about a year that BOTH sides of my brain are optimally used. Idea, design, the making of the thing, assembly, finishing, photographing, successfully wearing and/or selling it. This is the process with every single piece - and I am loving it.
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