Sunday, February 2, 2014

Shard Babies All Grown Up

On October 29, 2013, I shared some recent experiments with you, where I was attempting to capture the look of ancient pottery shards in metal:

Most of these pieces have since "grown up" into finished jewelry. I wanted to share the finished pieces with you!

After I got my patinas the way I wanted them (which included, on some of the pieces, a whisper of gilder's paste over the top to bring up some pattern), I sealed each one with three coats of Permalac and a coat of Renaissance Wax on the front (which darkened the colors nicely) and one coat of Permalac on the back, which I left as bare, burnished copper. The two green pieces and the teal piece also got several coats of Age-It over the top (available from Sculpt Nouveau--I LOVE this stuff, it's like tea-staining, but for metal patinas.)

Here are the creative homes they eventually found. This piece includes amethyst nuggets and Indonesian glass in a lovely cinnamon color from Happy Mango Beads. (I've been totally into making bar chain, linked with wire wrapped beads.)
Jacob's Grape-a-Licious Ladder
This one has carnelian, amethyst, red agate, golden jasper, carnelian, bronzite and a sea urchin spine. And more bar chain.
Aztec Sun
I paired this one with rhyolite, prehnite, Czech glass, dragon's blood jasper, Indonesian glass, and I think green opal. I've been doing this knotting thing, where I put one strand through the bead, and the other one around the bead, and tie a half hitch at the end, and then a regular overhand knot with both strands, and then on to the next bead, alternating which strand goes in/around the bead. It makes for an interesting jumbly, nubbly, irregular pattern.
Leafy Greens
This one has lots of recycled glass and Indonesian glass (all from Happy Mango Beads) and one of my favorite Karen Totten (AJE member) beads:
English Garden
For this one I went with sunset colors, with carved flowers in poppy jasper, tiger eye, fancy jasper, and red agate; red creek jasper, red picture jasper, moukaite jasper (I'm all about jasper, apparently), and a dash of Indonesian glass in amber.
Sunset Bouquet
For this one below, I channeled my inner Leprechaun. I chose large, irregular turquoise heishi, prehnite discs, celery green and blue-green kyanite, emerald green aventurine, golden jasper (I'm making that up, I don't know what those little goldenrod-colored stones are), peridot, moukaite, "prehnite" chalcedony (on the clasp ring), and a fabulous handcrafted porcelain leaf by Karen Totten (I actually started this with just the focal and Karen's leaf, and riffed off that). I've been doing this thing with my own oversized, tube-riveted bead tips (those are the copper tabs at the end of the knotted portions).
Interview with a Leprechaun
For this one, I decided to go hog-wild with my sterling silver stash. I hadn't been using it partly because of price, and partly because of my love affair with copper, but I figured, hey--the money's already gone, might as well use it; and I just thought the teal and turquoise cried out for silver. I went with more more of my turquoise heishi, a flat turquoise drop, kyanite, African turquoise, green apatite, bronzite and pale topaz Czech glass (the color makes me think of whiskey and soda) to draw out the browns in the focal (purely serendipitous--this came from the Age-It treatments, I didn't use any brown patinas). For both this piece and the one above, I used a deliciously rustic, undyed Irish waxed linen cording from White Clover Kiln that's slightly thicker than the other shades of Irish waxed linen. I recently got a huge spool of it from Mary so now I can go crazy with it! And notice more bar chain, this time with double-ended ball headpins wrapped around the middles.
Treasure of Tenochtitlan
Phew! Seven down, two to go...Thanks for looking!

(The ones with links above (in the captions) are still available in my shop, Lune. The items without links are already sold.)

The Cerebral Dilettante
Keirsten's Flickr Photostream


  1. Your patina work is gorgeous as are your pieces. I will have to get some of the Aged patina.

  2. Wonderful pieces!
    Beautiful jewelry!

  3. These pieces are drop dead gorgeous!

  4. Oh my goodness, how absolutely stunning each and every one of them is!

  5. Okay, I love every single one of them! They are so beautiful! :)

  6. Keirsten, I am in awe of your talent. And I mean that sincerely. The metal pieces of course are beautiful, but what you have done with them is beyond any possible expectation. Your eye for stones and beads to begin with is amazing. Creating pieces like these is something that I can only begin to aspire to, to someday create at half your level would be joy!!. Your talent is large. Every single piece in this post is worthy of high accolades! There is so much detail I haven't really soaked it all in yet. Thank you for sharing your Art and your Talent with us, and for inspiring me to keep moving forward.

  7. Keirsten, I am in awe of your talent and your work. And I mean that sincerely. The metal pieces are beautiful, of course, but what you have created with them is beyond! Just beyond. Your talent is Large. These pieces are so detailed; I have not yet soaked it all in. Every single one is worthy of high accolades. Thank you for sharing your Art and your Talent with us. You inspire me to keep moving forward. Thank you.

  8. Just amazing, gorgeous pieces of jewelry! I, too, am in awe of your talent.

  9. Wow! Wow! And I could say that a few more times.

  10. These are some amazing pieces! I kept saying "this one's my favorite" every time I scrolled down. LOL

  11. These are beautiful Keirsten—both your metal components and finished jewelry! I love the mix of metal and knotting—gives nice organic feel. I totally need to learn how to do this (or acquire some already made ;-) they look like so much fun for jewelry making!

  12. WOW! Absolutely gorgeous! As usual!

  13. These are all so great, but I especially love Leafy Greens and Sunset Boquet, gorgeous patina and finished pieces.

  14. Really Very beautiful jewelry collection i love it too much.

  15. I love the shards!!! Please keep going! They make awesome components and they way you put them together well......swoon!

  16. Whoa. I love seeing these all grown up, and I love getting to know you and your style.

    Tell me more about Permalac?


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