Sea drift necklace iii

sea drift 3

julia cowie

This silver necklace has a lapis drop, the Forth dolphin and a silver heart all handing from a silver-frame ring. The chain is a silver belcher chain and the clasp is my own bar and ring fastening so it is easy to wear.

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Sea drift necklace II

seabreezeii

The sea didn’t bring me the witch stone direct, it’s from a beach in New Zealand; the glass bead is from Czech Republic and the dolphin charm is obviously a Firth of Forth dolphin. Just putting together some individual pieces for ENOS 2019 which are sort-of sustainable as I’m not buying new stuff.

Seaweed necklaces

seaweed3

This year I’m making jewellery for Open Studios and Pittenweem Arts Festival using what I think I’ll call ‘sea-drift’. The seaweed on which the design is based was storm-cast on the beach.  These ‘mermaid’ necklaces are saw pierced silver, hammered and formed. Two have moonstone drops and are oxidised, I have sent these to VAS ALIGHT 2019 in Edinburgh.

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Pittenweem Arts Festival 2018

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Pittenweem Arts Festival is on again, do head down to Water Wynd, Venue 70 to see us. (That’s Keny Drew, Nicola Wiltshire, Frazer Reid and I) The net loft looks really good this year with better lighting and the introduction of white fabric to lift the space.

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I have a selection of copper, iron and bronze bowls as well as some jewellery.

PFA2018ii

Stone to Bowl clay dip moulds; incl wax melt out and all-in casting

Returning to Stone to Bowl:-

stonetobowlmouldfiringOnce the wax models have been made and sprued they are then dipped in a slurry mix of clay (this time from Kingsbarns) sand (Cellardyke beach) and fibre (horse poo from near Kilrenny). There are two mixes, one is fine and the early coats are done in this and the other is coarser to build up the outer layers. Each layer has to dry before the next layer is added so it takes several days to build up the mould.

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When the mould is built up a clay funnel is added. The moulds are then ready for the wax to be burnt out. The first photo shows the burn out. Below are the moulds that have been burnt out.

stonetobowlburnoutmoulds

The link below is to an animated film about lost wax casting, which explains the process well.

https://hyperallergic.com/286780/an-animated-guide-to-the-bronze-age-technique-of-lost-wax-casting/

I also tried out a casting method where you burn out the wax and then put the copper alloy in one end of the mould. You then seal up the mould with a lid and clay mixture and return the mould to the furnace. stonetobowlmoulds

This photo shows the moulds and lids ready for burn out.

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This photo shows the all in one moulds ready to return to the furnace for the copper melting stage.

In theory the copper heats to melting point and you upend the mould and the copper pours into the part that you want to cast, In practice because you can’t see the metal it is difficult not to either get incomplete melting or over heating and the metal seeping out through the ceramic shell.

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The photo shows incomplete melting, the copper is fused (bottom right)

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This photo shows a mould where the metal over heated and seeped through the mould walls. There are two moulds, one complete (but rattles so I’ve not broken it) and an open one.

The moulds with incomplete melting can be ‘re-used’ as open moulds.