Monthly Archives: May 2012

Making Jewelry Storybook–Orange Citrine Necklace

The gem: a decahedron (12-sided) double star cut orange citrine, 13+ carats.

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The setting before soldering, with the seat ring at the top ready to be put in after the setting is soldered.

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The setting is soldered and the seat is soldered inside the setting. Now I’m working on the crown with a file. This file is sharp! I have a band-aid on to prevent cutting myself with the file.

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I’m refining┬áthe crown with a small hand file. Notice I now have 2 band-aids on because I cut my other finger with the sharp file, and I don’t want to keep having bloody fingers. Super glue is great for putting cuts back together, but need to prevent them in the first place.

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I’m polishing the crown setting with a pumice wheel.

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This shows the completed crown setting. You can see the seat ring soldered inside. This is for the stone to lay on. The crown points have relief cuts to protect the sides of the stone from chipping, and so the points will bend over more easily, since it’s made from heavy gauge sheet. A bail for the chain has been soldered on, and it’s pre-polished before setting.

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This is the completed necklace with the stone set.

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A little better photo with a close up of the stone.

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And the final piece with the neck wire that has a spring compression clasp. The neck wire looks a little odd in the photo because it has a slight curve in it to compensate for laying on the collarbones so that the wire looks circular in appearance.

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Hope you enjoyed the photo journey of how a piece is made. If you want to see stories of other pieces, vist the category, “Making Jewelry Storybook.” Thanks for visiting!

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On the Bench

I’m not a big fan of citrine, but this one sure caught my eye. Orange, double cut star, decahedron (12 sides), 13+ carats. Ah! Nothing like a setting challenge!

Big orange citrine faceted gemstone

Orange citrine faceted gemstone

I’ll have more about the setting and how it was made in a Storybook Jewelry feature, but I decided to keep the emphasis on the stone itself, the setting had to be minimalist. So here’s a picture of the necklace with the lovely setting on a neck wire.

Big citrine necklace

Big faceted orange citrine necklace

Here’s another view:

Big orange citrine necklace

Big faceted orange citrine necklace

The neck wire looks odd because it’s not sitting on a neck form. It’s shaped to lay on the collar bones so as to not stick straight out. I also found out I need to turn the termination 90 degrees so it’ll flat against the neck. Duh! Obvious things are not always apparent right out of the gate.

And it’s on its way to a gallery exhibition!

On the Bench

Just finished! This is a giant almost orange decahedron (12 sides) double cut buff top citrine in a sterling silver necklace. Oh, this gem is gorgeous! It has sparkle like you cannot believe. I can’t wait until I get some good photos of it! I’ll have a Storybook on this one as soon as I get some nice photos of the completed piece.

Orange citrine pendant

Giant orange citrine pendant

This one is just finished too. OK, I work on a bunch of things consecutively, so it doesn’t seem like I’m doing anything, then all of a sudden there’s a bunch of pieces done. These really pretty pieces have complex executions, so it takes awhile to complete them. This one will have a Storybook on how I made it too.

 

Drusy and garnet pendant

Handmade drusy and garnet pendant

This particular piece began as just sheet. I hand etched the Celtic pattern into it, cut it out, made the hinges, did the hinge pin catch assembly and set it with amethysts on both the top and the bottom. Everybody who got a sneak peak preview at the opening of the jewelry show was fascinated with the catch. (Thank you Jean Stark for teaching me that catch–elegant.) They were pulling it up, unfastening, putting it on, fastening the thing. Repeat. All the extra tight hinge allowances have now loosened to their proper tension. It didn’t go in that show, but will be going in another, and then off to a gallery.

Handmade Celtic bangle bracelet

Handmade hinged Celtic bracelt with amethysts

Update

OK, things don’t go to plan. The 3rd installment of how to clean jewelry has video problems, as in–it sucks. The plan was to do it over, but the weather wasn’t cooperating so my daughter could get in to do the filming. Believe me, it’ll be worth the wait, okay?

There was the usual Christmas rush and my usual “I don’t want to see a piece of metal or a stone for a month!” I’m over it now.

I do my usual slow period stuff, redo the website (that’s the Metals and Gems one), do the taxes, sketch a lot and do my pretty stuff that makes my heart sing. Like the one above, which is a doublecut decahedron (that’s 12 sides) buff top almost orange yummy citrine. I think it’s about 13 carats. Oh, and it’s what passes as spring here in Wyoming, so I’m busy with planting.

Soon, I’ll be migrating the blog over to WordPress, because it has a lot more options and is easier for people reading it to navigate. Yet another thing I have to learn. Good for the brain cells, right?

I had a big arthritis flare, unable to use my hands much and couldn’t sit because of the hip. The medicine the rheumatologist put me on is pretty rough on the system too. Did you know they use chemotherapy drugs for advanced arthritis? I have a whole new respect for people going through chemotherapy–they take a lot more than I do! I feel like a pathetic wuss.

My husband is working hard on the room that will become my studio. He’s put down a tile floor and painted the walls. There’s much more to be done–wiring, ceiling, finish framing the windows, cabinets–and then the big stuff–moving all the equipment in and finding new places for everything. It’s gonna be a great place!

Most of my new work has already been placed in galleries, but I’ll be showing you some of my upcoming pieces as shot off the bench.