Sunday, December 13, 2009

December 11, 2009: Fire in the Hole!

I became a firing machine tonight!

All pieces previously listed were fired tonight except the silver heart. That I've put aside til next weekend so that I can fully concentrate on them. I want to be sure that I use the best method possible to hold the copper mountains on.

I added 18 gauge fine silver wire to the puzzle pieces to form prongs for the crystalized titanium. I've never done this before so it will be interesting to see how it works. I also added a 'hidden' medium size bail on the back of each piece so that I wouldn't have to put a hole through the top of the puzzle piece.

The pieces are cute - they have a little tiny heart carved through each of them that can only be seen if the piece is flipped over. If all goes well the back side of the titanium that sits over this heart will have color right where the heart is so color will show through.

Now I just need to add the 24K gold stripes to the pieces. Why titanium and gold? because the recipients wear mostly gold. So I'm adding gold to the piece and will put them on gold chains which will allow it to fit in with their usual color preference. :o) Smaht thinkin' eh? :o)

The shells are gorgeous. Only ran into one problem. I used a Swarovski crystal for the birthstone on one of the charms. I used a Cool Tools labeled CZ Clear for the other one - to look like a diamond. The Cool Tools gem had the listing that it could be fired. The Swarovski did not. The surprise to me was the Swarovski crystal melted in the kiln... what a fun experience that was! LOL Better on this piece than on the large shell piece!

I recreated the little shell charm, put in a Cool Tools light blue 'gem' (approved for kiln) and then used the same 'gem' on the large shell. The cool thing about the shells are the 'bezel' I created makes it look like the birthstones are barnicles on the shell. So pretty.

Cool surprise when firing the blue 'gem'... when I looked in the kiln (bad habit) I noticed that it had TWO clear 'gems' ... I thought ohhh no! but when it came out I watched with absolute excitement as the color came back to the blue 'gem'. It is so pretty.

Waiting for Tumbling:
~ Large Shell Pendant w/ birthstones
~ Shell Charms (x2) w/ birthstones
~ Japanese Character Dog Tag-like Pendant
~ Wax Stamp Pendant - to hold 2 polymer clay birth 'stones'
~ Shell charm w/ melted birthstone (just for the heck of it)
~ calDESIGN tag - to be used on the Wax Stamp Pendant.

Photos coming Sunday!

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