Happy New Year
Well 2010 has been and gone now and now we look forward to 2011 in a positive manner and to getting the grinding and sanding wheel a turning again in the Lapidary workshop.
2010 was a quiet year out in the workshop for many reasons like other work commitments and to be honest no real need for more cabochons and tumble stones, simply because there wasn’t a lot of selling going on at the craft fairs in the first half of the year.
Fortunately things picked up in the second half of 2010 with the sale of rough rock showing an improvement and Shalini’s finished jewellery sales have also picked up a lot, so now we have got to start producing more of unique free form cabochons and get those tumbling machines spinning again.
While I am on the subject I should also mention that Shalini has completely rebuilt her on-line Jewellery Showroom and Shop which you can visit at //www.jewellerybyshalini.co.uk and I have got the Rough Rock Shop on line as well, although I still have to get some cabochons and slabs photographed to on there, but you can find the Rough Rock Shop at: //www.roughrockshop.co.uk
On the subject of tumble stones it has been really nice to see how interested the youngsters are in these stone’s, in fact I would say the vast majority of tumble stones have gone to kids who are under 10 years of age which is really nice.
We are also going to explore the possibilities if using copper wire more in our jewellery creations, in fact we are actively looking for a good source of 21swg square copper and half round wire, looks like we will have to import it from the USA as we haven’t found a supplier over here in the UK.
In addition to working semi precious stones like Tiger Eye, Blue Lace Agate and the many others we have in stock I also want to revisit my big stock of Flint and get to know it better and maybe couple it with the copper wire to produce a range of “not too expensive” jewellery but keeping it in the same class as our Sterling Silver wrapped jewellery. I also like the Flint because it’s a material I collected myself from an excavation site, so there is more of a bond to it than the bought in rough that we have.
Our adventures with wire tree sculptures have continued throughout 2010 and now instead of a small copse of trees we now have a small forest so to speak. We have made all kinds of shapes and sizes of trees out of bare copper, plated copper, aluminium and brass. I also had the idea of creating wire sculptures of Ent’s, you may remember them from the Lord of The Rings films, the most notable of the Ent’s was a chap named Tree Beard.
At first I wasn’t too sure how these Ents would turn out but I am happy to say that most people who have seen them at the craft fairs have recognised them who they are, so I must have got them right I guess. So Far I have made 3 Ents, one has gone to a new home in the last few months and seems to have settled in quite happily with his new family. There is also a larger one who is taking a rest sitting on a pile of boulders, I will get a picture of him up here soon and then there is the bay Ent who only got completed about two weeks ago, he looks to be full of mischief!
The wire sculptures will continue into 2011 as I am just about to start one in bare iron wire, maybe a foot tall as this one is going to be an experiment as he will be out outside when he is finished. I want to see how the wire rusts and how it adds to the overall finish of the tree. If it works then there will be a range of taller outdoor tree sculptures made which can go in the garden or on the patio.
So there we have it lots of plans for 2011, so first up when it gets a bit warmer is to give all of the equipment out in the Lapidary workshop a good servicing so it’s ready for use however I think this afternoon I will make a start on that bare iron wire tree sculpture I just mentioned.
All the best