Tag Archives: problem solving

This is how we do it….

21 Feb

Spring printing…Originally uploaded by CleverGirlBekThis is how I dry my cards after I print them with my Gocco printer…And I thought plantation shutters were just an aesthetic thing…Realized quickly that I don’t, with my other creative endeavors, have enough surface area to dry the amount of cards I print for one batch….Judy over at Northwood (http://northwoodstudios.tripod.com/) suggested taking cookie sheets (the kind that have 4 shallow sides) and stacking them up… Great idea, but not for me (I don’t bake. Too many rules to follow!)I tightened up the shutters so they wouldn’t tilt and spill under the weight of the cards and voila….I noticed the print pad on my gocco wasn’t sticky enough so I grabbed some xyron adhesive that had run through the xyron without anything on it (it’s one of the 510 xyrons- where you have to peel the plastic away from the backing and the sticker is sandwiched between the two…. Took the sticky plastic, put it sticky side down on the gocco pad… pressed down the gocco top/lid a few times…Carefully peeled the plastic film off and yippee! The pad is nice and fresh and sticky again….BUT now it’s too sticky!So next time I’ll try the repositioning adhesive from xyron…. But until then, I’ve put down some painters tape on all but one little square of the pad- just enough to hold the cardstock without holding it hostage and risking me ripping it up or warping the paper….Of course, your mileage may vary….I’m just happy that my gocco is sticky again AND I got to use that wasted xyron material….Woohoo…By the way, if you are wondering about the cards- these are my gift with purchase cards…. I realized awhile back that I love giving gifts to folks and I love ordering handmade goodness online to use for those gifts… BUT most things ordered had a way of hanging out around here until one of us remembered to pick up a greeting card (or get around to making one or remembering to order a bunch of multi-purpose handmade cards)…I figured that maybe some of the folks purchasing my creations might be in the same boat… So, with gocco in hand I set to work…. Now every item ordered from me comes with a multi-purpose card, and every piece is gift wrapped… Hopefully this makes giving a gift of CleverGirl jewelry an even happier event…

This and that and Industrial Sunshine.

25 Jan

CitronOriginally uploaded by CleverGirlBek Eeep. None of my format is keeping…. So this looks like it came straight from my brain! (I’m the queen of the run-on… I had a prof in college tell me I was “comma-tose”….) Sorry :-)  My love of juxtaposing opposites is endless….Even when the differences are more subtle or cerebral…I love mixing natural and manmade materials (silver and plastics)…. Different textures…. Different colors and shades…. Old and new…. Most of my pieces have a marriage of opposites – it’s part of who I am and has always been a part of my art… I would say that less than a handfull of my pieces that have this dynamic were intentional at the get-go… Often the details that comprise the contrasts, are only revealed to me at the very end or close to the end. On occasion, I’ll have a piece that is technically finished but I’m not getting that giddy, goofy jumble of excitement fluttering around my belly. That lack of feeling is a sure sign that a piece is not done. Around a quarter of my more intensive pieces (those that demand bezel settings and handmade chain) are put in a tin to await additional inspiration….There’s no rush. These are typically not custom or made to order pieces.These are typically new designs and they just need a little push from me… I like to explore and I love the way this scenario works my brain. I also like to follow my pieces wherever they want to take me during “the build”… Often I’ll have a satin, semi-satin, brushed, or completely matte finish in mind when working on a piece but when I get to that point my gut pushes me on- I want to make sure I’ve made the best creative choice for a piece- so most piece in the finishes I’ve mentioned above have actually been brought to that finish and then painstakingly finished to a mirror shine- which for me acts as a blank canvas for whatever final finish I come to… I apply the tiny scratches and rub with sandpaper a little bit at a time- like a painter laying paint and pushing it around a canvas… The picture here is of my Citron earrings- which I also make in other colors…. This is one of those pieces of contrast- matte and shiny, light and dark, sunny and cloudy… A little industrial sunshine for all of you….This style is near and dear to my heart because it required a whole bunch of problem solving…The problem? How to make sterling silver chain where one link was glass and not have the glass shatter or become weak from thermal shock on the way up (torch soldering) or the way down (just cooling) without a kiln…. Hmmmm….Sure I could have just left the rings open- even a paper thin gap in the ring closures would have held the glass ring secure, but that would have been too easy… I’m in this to learn, to explore, so I pressed on…Tried a few different ideas (top secret, of course) and finally a durable answer (durable in regular wear…the yellow rings are glass after all…a sharp smack onto a marble floor is not considered regular wear…although I did drop my pair on tile and they were fine)…And I think the look is pretty fantastic… Links of hammered sterling silver (in a heavier gauge than usual- your lobes won’t notice the extra weight- it’s more visual than anything…Wires are still standard gauge) with a link of fabulous glass (yellow! green! cobalt! a milky carnelian that is just fabulous! gray! black!)…. Ok. Enough of my babble for today… Going to run to the store for some mini-ravioli’s for boy’s dinner…. (I put a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in a pan, heat it a little bit, and then gently slide in some frozen mini raviolis (mini- seriously less than 1cm square) -carefully so there is no splatter…. then cook until they start to brown/toast….let cool slightly…. mmmm. yummy. it’s pretty much the one food boy requests aside from chocolate milk…) Oh and there are a few new pieces in the shop  Happy Friday!B 

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