The leather cord

leather cords and pendants
From left to right: Picture Jasper, Turqoise and onyx ring with picture jasper inside.

This simple design has been with us for a very long time. A leather cord with a pendant hanging loose around the neck.

It`s such a versatile necklace, especially when you can change both the leather cord and the pendant. Idea from Klingenberg again.

I have made a few of these in black, dark brown and light leather – along with some wire wrapped pendants. They are great for every day use, or as some like to call it – denim style.They weight almost next to nothing as well. The cords are wrapped with half round copper wire 18 ga, and the clasp is made from 18 or 20 ga round wire.

Chainmaille-Byzantine

chainmaille heavy
Chainmaille byzantine weave necklace

I really need a bust to be able to depict these kind of necklaces in a good way. Chainmaille tend to look rather flat when not worn. Only around a neck or a wrist do these shine. They look so intricate, so timeconsuming – and they have this flare of history around them. I fell in love with this technique the moment I saw it, but didn`t think I would be able to make one of my own. It turned out it wasn`t that difficult to learn. This weave at least which is called byzantine weave, or Kongelenke in norwegian. There are other weaves out there that are far more complicated, but I just adore this one. The rings are copper 18g 3/16″ID and the necklace is 55 cm long. It`s a heavy necklace, rough in it`s build, and more suited for a man. It weighs 74g, and I imagine I would get tired wearing it after awhile. It tarnishes rather quickly – maybe faster after I had it in the tumbler awhile. I can always tumble it again, but perhaps the new owner likes it this way – less shiny. The owner being my son that thought this weave looked so cool he just had to have it. Isn`t that just great 🙂

Love Hurts

Love Hurts2
Kumihimo necklace with wirewraps, amethyst and Murana glass heart

Sometimes I just need that extra push to start creating something. I wanted to cheer up a friend that is going through some rough times, and wanted to make her something that represented that there are other people and things in her life. The stone I had to use for this just had to be Amethyst of course. I initialllly used a mix of faceted round amethyst with some chipped and raw cut ones, but it didn`t come out right. I cut up the whole thing again, and started the process from the beginning. On each side of the amethyst there is a swarovski crystal bead. The copper wire is 22ga, and 20 ga  in the swan clasps. The ribbon is braided using the kumihimo tecnique.

The heart is from the stash that my niece left me. I think it`s Murano glass. The colour is rich and deep. I love how the copper wire brings out the colour in the green and purple. This is the most workintensive and elaborate piece to date, not counting chainmaille.

Wire work

bracelet bronzitte rosen
Bronzite and rosenquartz bracelet

While stringing beads on a wire really doesn`t feel like much of an accomplishment, getting a wire loop just right does. Theres something about working with wire that appeals to me. A combination of my previous hobbies perhaps, or maybe just the feeling that you are adding a real craft to your design.  I am still working on getting the technique just right. The tutorials made by Rena Klingenberg has been a tremendous help. I am also looking forward to a wire working class she has been producing that is available soon. Just hope it will not be too costly. Although I have no intention of selling my jewelry just yet, I have found the above mentioned site very useful.

Getting that professional look to your piece, is certainly not that easy. I had to redo the bracelet a couple of times, until I was happy with the result.

Turquoise – what is and isnt

turquoise
Is this turquoise?

I find it extremely difficult to know whether the turquoise I buy is the real thing, or just some manmade mock up. There are so many different terms in use, I am terribly confused. This is what I have gathered so far, do tell me if any of this is wrong – thanks.

  • Stabilized – means that the gemstone is processed afterwards to preserve the colour, and to prevent marks.
  • Dyed – Using another gemstone such as magnesite as base and then colour it as turquoise.
  • Composite – turquoise dust really, that has been mixed with resin or other glue to harden it. Some refer to this as reconstituted turqoise.

And all the variations between.

Now one should think that it`s rather easy – with vendors marking their wares appropiately. It isn`t of course. I have bought a few pendants that was marked as turquoise – but the price told me otherwise. I have no idea what it is though. Composite perhaps? I do hope so, then it`s still the real thing – after a fashion. ..