Archive for June, 2011
Approximately 1 year ago I was commissioned to make a ring for Nicola Martin by her then boyfriend Nicholas Carra.
This was the Octopus Ring which was meant to be a big secret but I have my suspicions she always knew what was happening!!
A number of weeks ago she came back to me with the piece, asking that I did a little bit of work to secure the base plate where the stones sat, as she was having to take the ring off for work all the time. The action of putting it on and taking it off had caused the plate to start to move.
I did this and added a couple of extra rivets to make sure that the base plate would not move at all!
Unfortunately, this movement made one of the stone loose and it decided to go on a journey without the ring into the never land!
I had the ring back and decided that we should maybe look at making the ring more “bling” by putting the coloured stones in claw settings like I had done with Alex’s Reflection ring. Nicola was more than happy with that suggestion as she had mentioned that she really liked Alex’s piece and the way the stones were set.
So off I went with the thought of removing all the coloured stones and adding a different colour to the setting that was now minus a stone. The result of this little endeavour is as follows and both Nicola and Nick came to pick up the ring on the weekend. They were very happy with the results and we all agreed that this ring has evolved over the last year into something that is even more special than before.
I love happy customers!
A good friend of mine commissioned me to make another good friend of ours a piece for her 40th birthday.
The brief was that it had to be made to a specific budget and that it had to function not only as a brooch but a pendant as well.
The original design I came up with worked at the time but when I made the piece up in the wax, I lost all enthusiasm for it. Not only did I feel that it did not work too well but I also thought that it would end up being far over the budget.
So I left my meeting with my client giving myself a bit of a kick in the pants, telling myself that I can do better than that.
A fact that I reinforced with a text message that read along the lines of “scrap that idea, I think I have a new one that will work much better than the original one – and it will suit Kate far better! See you Monday with a prototype!”
The thing was, there would be no prototype! Once I get an idea and I am really inspired by, it just takes off, and there is no stopping the creative process. Essentially, I sat down on the day of meeting with my client to see what I could create and pretty much had the piece finished within the day, with only a few things to add to complete the piece and a final polish the only step to complete.
Needless to say that this idea went down a treat and I knew we were on the right path! I went with my gut feeling and by this stage I should know that when the gut tells me to do something, I should just do it! It always helps that you have a bit of information about your client and the person the piece is being made for of course!
The design I decided upon was in the theme of Art Nouveau. We needed to have pearls somewhere in the picture and the addition of Paua Shell gives that pearl look, as well as throws a little bit of colour into the mix.
The budget was limited and required me to think out of the box. Once again I needed to get the size without the expense. I decided to go with an old trick of mine and not tell my client what the piece was made from until they saw it in person.
The material is revealed when you look at the back of the piece.
You may have guessed it already, but hopefully not. I used EPNS – Electro Plated Nickel Silver – in other words, a fork and spoon! The materials did not cost much at all and can be polished up to give you that expensive silver look without the expense. It is a tough material also which will mean the piece will have longevity and will withstand the odd knock!
Alex and I will be giving Kate the chain that will be going with this piece which has a Parrot Clasp that will hook onto the jump ring at the top of the piece (on the back), which allows the piece to worn as a pendant. The chain is also long enough that the pendant will hang in the right spot so the brooch pin does not sit against the chest.
I have not heard how the hand over of the piece has gone as yet but as we are going to the races tomorrow as part of the birthday celebrations, I will be able to get it straight from the horses mouth – so to speak!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY KATE FABULOUS!
Last night was the Art on James event where art and fashion combined forces in an “up late” event in James Street New Farm.
These photo’s are from a fashion parade where I made pieces specifically for the parade.
It was good to see them on the human form! When I make I don’t get to try them on many people and as I only have one ear which can still take an earring, it makes it hard getting the full picture! Plus, earrings never look good on a bearded, scruffy looking man! Especially these ones! Lol!
A big thank you to Sam from Stone and Metal for giving me the opportunity to get the pieces ready for this event on short notice and getting the models together!
The following pieces are what I have proposed for the South Bank Visitor Centre in Brisbane.
I was asked a number of weeks ago to come up with pieces that were specifically aimed at the tourist market and that would reflect South Bank and fit in with what they are trying to achieve in their Visitor Centre.
The first of the proposed pieces are these Palm Charms. I went into South Bank to have a look around and gather some inspiration from the environment. Having walked around for a while I took photos of flora and fauna, buildings and various aspects of the South Bank area.
Coming home and sitting at the bench, I flicked through the images on the camera and started to create. Charms would be perfect memento’s for visitors and so I came up with the idea of creating charms that would reflect not only the palm trees that you see in the parklands but in our sub tropical climate.
This is a mock-up of the proposed brooch idea I had. You cannot go to South Bank and not see one of the many Bougainvillea vines that grow along the Bougainvillea path. I did not want to create a cast piece that could look bland and uninteresting and came up with the idea of having a three dimensional brooch that would incorporate not only the wood of the vine but the steel structure it grew on – hence the combination of the materials.
Another of the brooches that I proposed. This one is based on the Brisbane Wheel from which you can take in the whole of the South Bank Parklands. This is however a temporary structure and will be gone after 2 years, so in a way I am creating a limited collection of this piece. But the concept that I have for this one is to create a piece that has a kinetic component where the wheel spins around. This is done by the wearer and adds an interactive element to the piece.
Throughout the design process, I have tried to maintain my own aesthetic and have created these pieces based on what I would like to wear. I did not want to fall into the trap of the general tourist market jewellery as so many may. I felt that South Bank were after something unique and I wanted to propose just that to them. There are also cuffs that are based on the Pagoda but they will come along later – if they are chosen by South Bank to go into production.
I was informed by Sam from Stone and Metal on James street of the Art on James event on tonight in James Street, New Farm the other week. I proposed to her that I would supply her with some pieces for a fashion parade that will be occurring on the night in front of her store.
As the evening is all about retail and the art community coming together, what better way would there be of supporting this initiative than by providing some unique one off pieces to be displayed on models walking the red carpet!
Here are images of some of the work that will be on display tonight!
Octo Necklace – $240
Octo Necklace -Oval and Round – $267
Octo Necklace – Round Feature – $157
Octo Earrings -Large Round – $115
Octo Earrings – Lrg Drops, Rnd – $115
Octo Earrings – Round, Oval – $115
Octo Earrings – Large Oval – $115
The prices listed are the retail price that will be on these products and is not the studio price. These pieces will be for sale on the night.
This is also your sneak peak at the types of products that will be up for grabs when I head to Melbourne for the First Instyle trade fair in August. I am in the process of getting the Aluminium coloured, once they are back I will be putting the pieces together and they will be complete and ready to go. Ready to be snatched up by those Melbourne retailers who want something fresh and unique in their stable of jewellery!