There's nothing quite like the combination of the warmth of wood and the cool sharpness of sterling. Throw in a stunning dash of colour like a beautiful specimen of turquoise and what you have is an irresistible combination like...a bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich! (You'll have to excuse the bacon reference..it may come up again in this entry..I've been smelling my neighbor's breakfast this morning and there's definitely bacon going on over there..)
I've been experimenting with the idea of setting a piece of wood rather than just stone into a bezel, working in particular with Rosewood. The rich, deep reddy brown it offers is so complimentary with sterling, with the addition of a natural oil sealant the colours simply pop. There are some other types of exotic wood I'd like to try; Zebrawood brings to the table a stunning grain pattern of pale and ebony stripes, although not as warm as the Rosewood, would still be a gorgeous piece of jewelry.
Retro fitting the two pieces together as in the example above proved to be quite a challenge. Although I was quite happy with the results, I think there's definitely room for improvement..the piece below is my latest attempt at marrying the same three elements together in a design, I'm not quite sure how I feel about it yet.
Lastly, I've also been playing around with casting objects in sterling. I'm a mould maker by trade and although sterling isn't a medium I've really had the opportunity to cast with very much yet, the idea of capturing all the beautiful, intricate textures by Mother Nature and creating something totally new is an idea I'm very familiar with.
This is a seashell I found and collected during a trip to Thailand a couple of years ago that's been moulded and cast in sterling silver. Are the details not simply breathtaking? It's a neat concept to be able to transform a fragile find on the beaches of Railay into something sterling, that will always be with me to remind me of my time there. My next challenge I think will be coral..tiny, white coral fragments that the ocean had cast out on its beaches.. it will be given a second life..it will become a part of something breathtaking.
I can't wait.
xo Blue Gnome