Month: May 2009

Milestones and COPPRclay

The last day of May and my son, Z, is now 10 months old- time is certainly flying.
Spent a good portion of the day on repair and finishing copper clay and copprclay pieces for firing. My cheesecloth bracelet should be finished sometime tomorrow, hopefully. I managed to get some Copprclay fired after discovering that my acid-washed charcoal fires w/ no problems.

The links will be a bracelet and the ovals, earrings. I’ve been fortunate and have had no sintering problems w/ Copprclay. Followed the firing guide that was on the info sheet that came w/ the package and fired a little bit longer since that’s what they recommend if you want to enamel. You can see the contrast nicely btwn the polished and untouched, it has a smooth working consistency and takes textures wonderfully. Overall, I’m very pleased w/ this new product and can’t wait to see what everyone else makes.

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Giddy, Oh So Giddy

It’s here! I just checked the mail and my COPPRclay and extruder was waiting for me! So very exciting, can’t wait to rip it open and play..must wait til after feeding little man his lunch. Just from feeling it thru the package and looking at it thru the plastic makes me think it will smoother to work w/ than BRONZclay. Didn’t I read somewhere that Copprclay doesn’t need to be conditioned, unlike Bronzclay? Hmm, may have to do some quick searches online to find out.

On a not so giddy note, I’m not sure I’ve managed to sinter my pieces of copper clay from my previous posts- they still don’t sound like change clinking together (which is *one* of the ways I know the bronzclay sintered properly when I took it out) and I don’t want to test my nice pieces, I’ll have to dig out that one piece that I broke off from before.

I’m also going to take the plunge and try to make my own tear away textures, not sure why this has me so intimidated. Turns out we don’t have the glossy photo paper that I need, so now I’ll be making a run to Office Depot this afternoon.. maybe I’ll be able to make some nice ones and use them on my Copprclay 🙂

Hinged Bracelet #2

The pieces for this bracelet are in the kiln right now and I hope I have better luck than the last. They may just end up getting fired twice, to be on the safe side.

One thing I learned from doing this style is that I should’ve butted the hinge up to the edge instead of leaving space- this makes it harder to fill gaps and sand later on.
I have one more hinge style to show, I made earrings w/ the third technique- will try and show in the next couple of days..

Clasp Disaster

My copper clay bracelet that I was so excited about finished firing late last night and I let it cool overnight w/ the lid off and checked on it this morning. While trying it on, the clasp broke since apparently the metal didn’t sinter properly.

I really tried to like this clay but it’s getting on my nerves. Once I use up what I have left I’ll probably just switch to COPPRclay- once it gets here, of course.
In an effort to make lemonade from lemons, I decided to put hinges on the part that broke off in the hope that it will be easier to put on. It’s drying right now and I hope I was able to affix the new clay to the old.

Copper Clay Bracelet

This bracelet has been weighing on my mind for a week now and I finally made myself finish it and get it cleaned up.

Just ignore those scorch marks on the left piece, it seems my warmer gets a little too hot and almost toasted my card on which was resting my link. I was too impatient to let it air dry since I was finally in the mood and free time is rare w/ a 9 and a half month old to corral.
There are things I have learned for next time- such as trying to avoid the warpage factor when drying since this makes it difficult to get the hinges to line up correctly. Especially when the links themselves have a curve. Guess I should’ve made a list earlier while I was working- I seem to have forgotten the others..
I am excited to try making my own tubes w/ the Makin’s extruder, oh, the time that will be saved, lol. ‘Cause I’m all about saving time as the girls from class can attest. Hadar showed us her bag o’ tubes that can be cut to size for hinges or bails- very smart, I say.
Speaking of smart, Hadar also mentioned how it’s a good idea to number your links when you’re working so you can make your hinges fit correctly.

Ah, I just remembered another thing for next time…make sure the clasp is on straight!

These pieces are in the kiln right now and lordy, lordy I hope they fire ok- keeping my fingers crossed.

Hadar’s class was fabulous and realized how nice it would be to have my own Makin’s Professional Clay Extruder with an adapter to make TUBES! How ingenious- and time saving. I bought mine from Whole Lotta Whimsy since Michaels didn’t carry it..so much for that 40% off coupon. What I did find at Michaels were those leeetle clothes pins that can hold your clay together for you. They were in the wood/dollhouse section, and I also found some round wooden beads I plan to use as molds.

My pieces that I worked on last week need some finishing before firing and I’ve just been putting it off since that’s the part I hate the most. Meh.

Since it was a bit of a drive for me- about 2 and a half hours due to traffic- I wanted to cram as much as possible into the class. I managed to get two bracelets and a pair of earrings using 3 different hinging styles put together. Hadar had a smorgasborg of treasures – earrings, bracelets, necklaces, etc. that you could use as inspiration and examples. Her work is beautiful and intricate- the perspective view pendants were mind-boggling.

Now to just make myself take the time to finish those pieces-I suppose I could blame it on my little little man..nah.

Anticipation!

Tomorrow I get to take Hadar’s class about metal clay and hopefully will get over my fear of -*gulp*- hinges. The other benefits of taking a class is meeting new people and seeing those you already know- yahoo, Beady Gals!
I haven’t gotten nearly as much done this week in preparation for the class as I had hoped due to my son’s surgery on Monday at the children’s hospital at Stanford. What a wonderful place with great staff and doctors.
Now to finish finalizing my list since I’m prone to forget important things..

Computer Crash and Teething Nightmares

It’s hard to believe that we’ve been back from visiting family for a week and a half already. Could be that my time has been sucked away by an active and seriously teething baby.
Now we have to worry that all of our pictures and information may have been lost in a computer crash last night. Keeping my fingers crossed that it is something fixable.
If I could only find my beadmaking mojo- maybe once this current drama has passed over, my mojo will return.