Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy 4th

Happy Fourth of July!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Before and After Earrings

Yay, I got new earrings... sort of.

Often, people give me all sorts of jewelry goodies for recycling.  Some pieces are so yesteryear, others may be broken or missing parts. And then, there's bling that is just not the owner's style.   I got this pair of earrings about a month when one of my neighbors moved out and left a bag of jewelry and jewelry supplies. Chi-ching!
The pretty things sat on my desk for about a month until today that I decided to update them and give them new life.

First, I decided to add a patina with Baroque Art Gilder's Paste. I simply apply it with my fingers. An alternative that can work as well is nail polish, but the color might peel at some point.

I let the patina cure for about five hours. It's recommended to to 12 hours to fully cure. I was too anxious to see the end result. LOL

To protect the color, I sprayed them with Rust-oleum clear gloss and let it dry for about and hour in the sun.

And there you have it, a new patina pair of earrings with earnuts. I could have stopped there but that would have been way to easy.

If you know me, you know I like long earrings. I played a little with beads to see what would work. I was looking for color combination, texture combination, and light weight.  The earrings were already a little on the heavy side and I didn't want them that much heavier. I opted for a thin, white, hemp cord and wooden and glass beads. I also cut out the earring posts (and filed/sanded the area to avoid any scratching on my skin) as I like my earrings to dangle.

Plan A  was to turn the earrings upside down with the widest side on top and to drill holes.  When I started drilling, the top broke off as the earrings are made pewter instead of brass as previously thought.  Plan B was to glue the one earring that broke off back together with E-6000 (which is great to glue metals. Note: Crazy Glue doesn't work on metals), then I used thin sterling silver wire and wrapped the thing gazillion times to both secure the earring and to make it dangle from the French earhook.

The mishap made the earring design way better. I'm stoked with the end result. Perhaps you have a pair of earrings that needs updating.  Go ahead try it, there's no right or wrong just make sure that you have fun through the entire process -even when you mess up.  Share your pics with us on Facebook or Instagram.  If you need me to help out, don't hesitated to hit me up.

By Sol at Wink Artisans,maker of stunning, artisan jewelry.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Because Mami Love is Sacred

I've been inspired by my family.  I've been spending lots of time with my mom Carolina, who lives with me all year round, and my mother-in-law, Isabel, who happens to be visiting from Costa Rica. Needless to say, there have been numerous displays of unconditional motherly love. This far-reaching, all-hugging, and caring love inspired me to create some new pieces celebrating our Spanish-speaking mamis.

Take a look and see if you fancy any for your own mama as a Mother's Day gift. Perhaps you would like a custom order with the word that you use for calling your mom: Mama, Ama, Ma, Mamita, Mamacita, Madrecita, La Jefita, La Mera Mera, etc.

BTW: Click on the name of the piece to be taken to the Wink Artisans Etsy Shop and see details on the already listed items.

Mami Sacred Heart Necklace 
L to R: Isabel, my mother-in-law and Carolina, my mom turistiando in La Jolla, CA. 

Mami Heart Charm Necklace

Madre Querida Love Drop Necklace 

Friday, December 4, 2015

Greek Coin Pendant

Wow, I never know what to expect when I get a custom order call. This project took me over a month to make, it was a challenge indeed. It all started with a phone call. Someone had found me online and he wanted to know if I could make a pendant featuring an old Greek coin. At first, I fired all sort of questions... what's the size of the coin? how old is the coin?  What is the coin made of? etc. After he answered my questions he added that he if possible, he would like to see if the pendant could be made way bigger than the coin.  I asked to have a pic of the coin sent to me and that I would do some sketches.

Greek Coin Pendant by Wink Artisans

So my parameters were:
  • Do not solder the coin... this meant it had to be set. 
  • Show both sides of the coin.
  • Make the pendant bigger, if possible double the size of the coin.
  • Sterling silver was the metal to be used.
As soon as I got the pic of the coin, I did some research.  I found out all sorts of interesting facts about this Arkadian coin circa 175-168 BC. The observe (front of the coin) is a laureate head of Zeus, the reverse is a seated Pan.  After my research, I printed the coin to the size I was told -about 5mm- and did three basic sketches, a teardrop, a horizontal plate, and a circle.

How I was to set the coin was not clear yet.  I had not actually seen the coin live. I had no idea how thick it was, or how delicate it was.  Initially, I was thinking of a prong setting, then lateral tabs, but then again, both sides of the coin had to be visible so those would not work in such a small coin.

Then I started thinking about a prong/teeth setting that could work for both sides. So that was the plan. My client opted for the horizontal plate shape.  Now, it was time to get the actual coin. Meanwhile, my eyes started acting out and making it difficult for me to work. 

Once I got the coin, the actual setting was to change, the coin was uneven. Not only was not a perfect circle, but the thickness was worn on one side more than the other.  Also, it was a little bigger that was I had projected. I had to sketch the shape once again to make sure the coin fit. Right round this time, my eyes were really out of commission. I went to the optometrist and after some tests, I was told that I might need a procedure call refraction.  Okay, I'm getting older I thought. I decided to let my eyes rest and put the order aside.

The melted setting.

After a few more eye procedures and few days of rest, I went back to the pendant.  A bit nervous, anxious, and scared.  After all, I did have a piece of Greek Antiquities on hand. I constantly kept working out the setting fit. Then, when I was ready to solder the setting, I melted it.  Chingao'!  Back to fitting the setting and then quickly to solder it to form the circle -this time with more caution- and then solder it to the silver plate.

Setting soldered to the silver plate.

Coin about to be set. 
And there you have it, I hand-polished it, gave its final touches, and added the chain. I was happy that it was over, that my eyes made it through, and most importantly, that my customers were happy with the end result. To see a pic on my client wearing the necklace click here!

Now, I'm ready for the next challenge, who says me?

The front, a laureate head of Zeus

The back, a seated Pan. 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Holiday Sale

This is the season of gift giving, so here's a little something to help you give some Wink this Holiday season.  Enjoy!

Visit the Wink Artisans Etsy Shop Now>>