So the blog “Love My Art Jewelry” is having a bootcamp/bloghop with some fun jewelry making skills. Every month they pick a different skillset and there are tutorials, fun posts, and then a blog hop where folks can show off their goodies.
This month it was balled headpins.
I’ve been balling my own headpins since my first jewelry making class with Deryn Mentock of Something Sublime, so this wasn’t really a totally new skillset for me… but I got to see some fun variations on the theme and learned some new twists. Like, if you want copper headpins with a great cherry colored ball? There’s a trick for that! I’d always been a little hit or miss about how to get that result. Now I know! Want to double ball a headpin with a bead on it? You totally can.
I’m a little behind in my studio, not feeling so hot, about to leave for two days in Scottsdale with Captain Sexypants and his family (I am meeting his sister/her family and his stepmom for the first time so am a bit nervous!) and brushing right up on a deadline for The Artisan Group, so the creative spark feels somewhat in short supply.
Still, these were fun. I balled up some 16 gauge sterling, and hammered the headpin ball flat, then lightly flattened/textured the wire just above it and turned it into a little dangly charm. Paired them with some of the neat-o turquoise I got at the last gem show (this is the same stuff from one of the sets of Oscar swag) and some African copper heishi. The hoops are 20 gauge sterling, patinaed and textured a little bit. Simple, but really eye catching and they look FANTASTIC with my “I am working in the studio and don’t care” uniform of yoga pants and a hoodie. THey’re kind of tribal and fun looking, but not so big or heavy that you couldn’t comfortably wear them every day. Which I just might. And I’ll definitely be playing with this technique a LOT more.
The beauty of a challenge like this is really all about renewing the creative inspiration. When you are constantly producing product for sale, you can start to run a little dry in that area. None of the stuff I’m doing for any of the art jewelry challenges and blog hops I’m participating is being made for the purpose of making a sale, though certainly the results may wind up in the shop at some point. Or they may not. It’s the making that matters and that part is really just for me, for learning and for fun. It’s refreshing in so many ways!