Evolution of a copper pendant – a work in progress

It was a very self-indulgent week. No, I didn’t have a massage…or a facial….or even a mani/pedi. I treated myself to a crafter’s ultimate indulgence: 3 hours of private lessons with an amazingly talented artisan who has some of her metalwork hanging in the contemporary gallery of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Her workspace is just flat out ridiculous (in a good way) – the large, first floor of a former dye manufacturing plant. Every possible tool and accessory you can imagine for metal working, jewelry making and more is here. My eyes couldn’t get any bigger as I walked in the door.

Parts of a pendant - the stone, copper bezel wire, sample bezel

My private lesson centered on soldering – something I just can’t do, let alone master. I bought some beautiful dichroic beads that I had picked up at a bead show recently. And I wanted to solder a copper bezel around each, and solder them in turn to a piece of copper sheet I had cut out.

Was it worth the $$$ for the private lesson? Oh yes. While I wouldn’t rush out to use the big-friggin’-acetylene torch we used again (I’m happy with my mini-torch!), I learned an entirely new batch of basics that allowed me to actually produce a fairly nice bunch of bezels around my stones. (A feat, I hope, I will be able to repeat at home.)

When I did get my pendant home, I got out my handi-dandi little dremel-wannabe drill/sander/etc and polished it up a bit. Them I played with  my stamps and put a very neat pattern of circles all over it. Then I sanded. The rough cut shape was sort-of what I wanted, but not exactly.  The little sander attachment took care of that.

The Pendant Takes Shape

At this point, I still am not quite sure how to orient the pendant. Should the bead be on the top, the bottom, or on one side? Still playing around with this.

I also decided it was too plain. So I created a spiral out of copper wire and added a teeny-tiny dichroic bead at its center to increase the shine factor. In this picture, I have only placed the spiral on the pendant.

The Pendant Gets Some Bling

Nothing has been attached yet. Still waiting for some inspiration to tell me where to put it.

Oh well…..the pendant saga continues. Opinions gratefully accepted.Next Post: (hopefully) The Finished Pendant


3 comments on “Evolution of a copper pendant – a work in progress

  1. It must have been awesome getting that private lesson. I don’t even have a proper studio. I have 2 (untouched) micro torches, books, a class on Craftsy.com for soldering and haven’t tried soldering yet. I’m afraid to even try it. Your pendant is evolving nicely. Can’t wait for the finished product 🙂

    • with the magnificent work you do – I am AMAZED you haven’t had years of classes!!! Seriously – I “ooh” and “ahh” over your work everytime I see it!
      I am very fortunate to live outside of Philadelphia – and twice a year the largest bead/education shows come to town in the suburbs near my. Beadfest is just awesome – more than 100 classes, hundreds and hundreds of vendors and some truly great prices (if you know what to look for.)
      I am scheduled for four classes coming up in April. Can’t wait.
      Oh – and that pendant was finished a while back – it sold quickly!!!
      Thanks for your comments.

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