For many of us, our workspace is where we love to be most when we have free time. I call it my “happy place” or my “Zen zone”, and it’s all about self-expression and creativity - and it’s therapeutic as well. Now don’t be fooled by the physical place I've described, because as many of us can attest - it can look as if a bomb went off and scattered beads, metal and tools everywhere! If you have never peeked into “the inner sanctum” (as our family members may have) be warned - it can look deceptively messy. Not always, admittedly, but it can scare anyone away in a hurry when it is! Like the scene of mayhem below, for example, of a fellow artist's workbench...
Needless to say when we do open our places up, consider it a privilege! I for one love to have the mystique remain so. But on this occasion, we will grant access... proceed with care!!!
My first featured Jet member is Jennifer of WearableByDesign. Jennifer is soon to be fresh off a sabbatical where she has studied under Master Jewelers, learning techniques such as micro chasing and engraving. Look for her shop to open in the next couple of months, with new work incorporating fine craftsmanship, luxurious gems and precious metals into wearable treasures. Here's a sneak preview from her private studio . . .
|The gemstones in this gorgeous silver work are 3mm sapphires|
"Above is a pair of earrings I just completed; they are micro-chased and engraved leaves. I finished the earrings about three weeks ago but just felt like there was something missing. So, I decided they needed a third leaf, that could swing freely and was not attached to the first two. This project allowed me to use the chasing skills I learned about 2-3 years ago, along with my newly acquired engraving skills that I am starting to get the hang of. I had the amazing good fortune to have studied with the master engraver Hratch Nargizian in San Francisco this past summer."
"And above is another pair of earrings that I'm reconstructing, from a poorly constructed set that belonged to my daughter. They were originally made in a third world country, and the attention to detail was not very good, but the stones were so pretty I thought they deserved a proper setting..."
"In keeping with a Moghul theme, I cut out a sterling back plate. I was not sure whether to pierce out additional motifs on the back plate, or add embellishments such as tear shaped wire work. So, I decided to let the earrings speak to me as I went along!"
Thanks for showing us what's on your bench, Jennifer! Now for something from my “chaotic room of disgrace” - only a disgrace if my Mom ever saw it!!! For me, it’s organized mess, because I can still find things (thanks to my label maker)!
Recently the JET Team had a contest with the theme “A JET Flower lasts forever”. I had been gradually working on the beaded cuff below for at least 8 months - it sat for the longest time after I stitched the black cover and beaded chain, waiting for further inspiration. I had learned the technique, waited on the super duo beads, spent a while figuring placement, color blends etc.
It was just a day away from the submission cut-off and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to add more or leave as is. Sometimes these things are a process and we have to step back, take a look and make a decision. I have at least half a dozen “projects” in various stages of completion, so I put this one aside and whipped up something completely different instead!
I’d also like to give you a look at one set that waited more than a YEAR before I decided to offer it.
I was feeling like a serious procrastinator until I heard of a fellow artist, who still has things from 7 or 8 years ago neatly tucked away awaiting a turn in the limelight! Be sure to check back often to see which JET artist will open their studio door for our next “What’s on my Bench?" session!
Until next time!