Welcome to the weird and hopefully wonderful world of my imagination , jewellery inspired by the animal life around me and the mysteries of history.
Click on the links to see more of my work, feel free to contact me if you have any requests or suggestions.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Birds, drawings and enamelling

It has been quite a while since my last post as I've been busy in my new, mind numbing and totaly un craft related job. Only having two days off a week restricts the time I can spend on my own work condsiderably.

I bought a kiln after christmas and at last I am  getting round to playing with it.

paragon sc2 kiln
 I find with any new piece of equipment I spend a lot of time looking at it before I get up the nerve to use it.....The more expensive the item is the longer the contemplation time.
First I spent a period of time reading up all I could find on enamelling in the local library and on the internet, then I watched various enamellers demonstrating on U tube, then a few weeks later finally I got around to buying some enamels. 

I think choosing what colours to buy is the hardest part as the information on the British web sites that sell enamel is very poor, colour samples are either non existant or very  inconstistant , in the end I went to WG Ball as it is only a couple of miles from where I live and bought 6 basic colours. black ,white, grass green,yellow ,red and dark blue, and a clear flux.
Then I went back to the library and reborrowed the books as I'd forgotten what they said!

Testing time................................................

One half of the test piece has clear flux underneath, the other is just enamel. The base is a 1p piece.
O.K tests are boring.
The next question of course is "what of all the ideas floating around in my head to make first?"
 During the quiet bits at work I've been doodling birds 
which lead to some drawings................

and finally 
Ta Da!
to some finished? enamel bird pendants
Black bird pendant
With the black bird, the beak seemed to go matt with handling over the next week so I refired it then the centre of the eye went matt.............I think I might try firing it again to see what happens. 

Green and yellow bird.pendant
These are both enamelled on very thick copper (1.5mm) so I have not counter enamelled the backs, The colours are all applied over a clear flux base. I'm quite pleased with these, I like the speckly nature of the enamel colours, and the bulginess of the bead eyes. I left the feet off as I thought they would be more comfotable to wear without.
 At  the moment I am subjecting them to wearing tests to try and ascertain their durability before putting thetm up for sale, any feedback would be appreciated.


  1. They're lovely Mandy. I've always loved enamel jewellery - there was a lot around when I was a kid but you don't see so much now. I've bought a few of your pieces now but all as presents. I think once these are available for sale I'll be treating myself! Lucy x

  2. These are very sweet. Hope you get some more time to experiment with the new kiln....why is there never enough time?!

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