Friday, February 22, 2013

Luminescence: The Silver of Peru

Got the February/March blahs? It's been kind of grey outside, but grey isn't always so bad. Especially when it's shiny! There's a cool exhibition in town of the silver of Peru, pre-Columbian to present. It's actually been in town since January 15 but it's still on until March 9th. I haven't been out too much in the past couple of weeks nevermind taken the subway, so I was pleasently surprised when I saw a poster for this:

There's also a public lecture this Wednesday the 27th.
You can read more about it here!
Hang in there, the flowers will be back soon.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

More Wearable Books!

Hi friends!

Here's a sneak peak at what I've been up to getting ready for the One Of A Kind Spring Show! 

Collection of book rings and bangles

What it looks like being worn as a closed book

What it looks like flipped around!

Come see these and other book related jewellery and things in person! The One Of A Kind Spring Show runs from March 27th - 31st!

See you there!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Create Your Own Heart

Everyday can be your Valentine's Day.  This guy came to me and asked me to design a double J heart necklace for his girlfriend. I think he is very clever and thoughtful. Among all the designs I gave him, this is the one he picked. The captial J is masculine and thick symbolizing man, and the samll j is curvy and orgainic representing woman. A white sappire is set in the center to give it a touch of bling. Instead of wearing it like a heart, I simply put a knot on the chain connecting to the pendant. He not only included himself into the pendant, but also gave the heart another level of meaning, just for the her.
Sterling sliver and white sapphire.

by Ellolite

Friday, February 8, 2013

Recycling Gold

Hello to you all on this snowy February day!

I know it is cold out, but this might help warm you up!

Have you ever wondered about recycling gold, and what that is all about? Well, I'm here to give you the down low. The truth is that all goldsmiths recycle their gold and silver. When we end up with enough scraps, we take it to the refiner. They take those scraps and refine them into clean material to be used again!

Sometimes we can reuse our scraps ourselves without going to the refiner. If we have clean scraps - they have to be completely free of solder and and impurities, or it will just taint all of the metal- we can melt them down ourselves and work them into new sheet metal or wire. But usually, we cast with them. This is the same way that we can take old jewellery (but again, it must be completely free old solder and impurities) and make it into new jewellery! When we make anything out of old metal, we have to add at least an equal amount of new metal. After metal has been used once, it starts to get dirty and "tired", by adding new metal it "refreshes" the old metal so that it can be used again.

Here we start off with the metals separate. 24K, pure gold on the left, the "old" gold in the middle, and the alloy metal- that is copper and silver we add it to change the colour (white, rose, etc) and lower the karat (18K, 14K, 10K, etc). In these pictures, we are also heating the crucible, a special melting bowl, and a carbon rod, used for stirring the metal.

Here a couple really cool photos of the metal melting. We add the metal in a certain order to keep the metal as clean as possible. Pure gold will oxidize less, so that goes first, then the "old" gold, then the alloy.

 Time to pour the metal!
And there is the lovely new 18K gold.
 Ready to be cast into new jewellery!

Here is a gold fox made by Sasha Oda

Now you know that goldsmiths were the first to be eco-friendly! It is a lot of work to reuse metal, but when it is possible, it is the option that we prefer. Here at Jewel Envy, we are lucky to have our own casting equipment. Without it, it would be impossible to reuse our metal.

Thanks for stopping by!
If you're willing to brave the snow, stop by Jewel Envy, and bring me a hot chocolate.