Monday, April 27, 2015


It's been an exciting morning. I couldn't wait to try the three dies. I cut a 3" square piece of copper sheet (26 gauge) and ran it through the rolling mill with one of the brass texture plates I have. Next, the piece was annealed and flattened. It had to be trimmed a bit since the rolling mill stretched it.

Here are the three dies and metal ready to go. Will try the heart die first.

OH NO!!! Too many pulls of the hydraulic press lever, and the metal got pushed to the bottom! It even has an impression of the little hole in the bottom of the form box.

I didn't notice until I turned it over that the metal had actually ripped!

We're not done yet. Another piece of copper was textured, annealed and pressed. This time I pulled the lever three times instead of six. A perfect heart! How exciting!

I cut and textured two more pieces for the other dies.

Three pulls of the lever seems to be good. Should I try four? I love these pieces and want to make them into pendants. Will cut them, leaving an edge that will be riveted to a back piece. A successful morning! I'll try 24 gauge copper next.

Sunday, April 26, 2015


I created a few shapes with my Cameo Silhouette today and cut them out on card stock. The 3" plexiglass pieces have a paper coating on both sides to protect the surface, so it was easy to trace the patterns. I chose three and drilled a small hole in each so I could insert my spiral blade.

Cutting with the spiral blade was really a slow process. It took much longer than cutting through metal. These blades are very sturdy and I wonder if they ever break. I was using a #4. Here I am half way done cutting out the heart shape!

Finished! I have the others to do and hopefully will try out one tomorrow.

Friday, April 24, 2015


I LOVE NEW TOOLS! I just received this Bonny Doon Form Box kit from Rio Grande. It came with six precut 3" plexiglass pieces, two brass faceplates, two urethane pieces, the pusher and Liquid Bur Life. Also to cut the plexiglass, I ordered spiral wax saw blades. This system will allow me to cut my own dies into shapes I want and press metal pieces with that shape ... using the hydraulic press.

These are the spiral blades.

Can't wait to start. My first piece will be a heart shape. You draw the shape on the plexiglass, then drill a small hole to insert your saw blade ... and saw out the shape. In the DVD, "Crushed Metal Cuff and Hydraulic Press" with Richard Sweetman, he saves the inner cut-out piece. By filing it so that it had ridges, you can press that small piece into your already pressed form and it will add the ridges. Hope that makes sense ... It's a great DVD for your collection. There's a section on pressing metal WITHOUT having a hydraulic press ... by using your vise!

Friday, April 17, 2015


Are you familiar with the work of Tanya Veit from AAE Glass ... and her webinars presented through Glass Patterns Quarterly? In fact, on the Glass Patterns site, under Glass Expert Webinars, Tanya is repeating her 3 hour "The Pebble Experience" on May 9th. I've seen all her webinars, plus have many of Tanya's DVDs available from AAE Glass. She also has many instructional videos (free) on YouTube. ALSO .... she presents a Saturday night video once a month to subscribers of her blog. She is really a wonderful teacher and just bubbling over with energy! Be prepared, as she talks very fast! You have to be a speed writer.

I made a couple pieces from last month's Saturday night video and fired them yesterday. These were made with Bullseye's alchemy glass (two different colors), along with silver foil, stencils and glass powders. I like them. The two colors of glass were cut into 1/2" strips. Next time I'll use more powder and use solid pieces of glass, rather than strips. Maybe small bowls? More to come ...

Thursday, April 16, 2015


I recently ordered an ebook by Lena Beckeus, who has been experimenting with glass powders on fiber paper. If your work includes fusing glass, I highly recommend this. Here is a link to purchasing her book:

She started a group on Facebook for those who purchase her book as a place to show their new work and learn more from her and others. It's really fun seeing everyone's pieces.

I finally had to try it myself ... although I won't be showing the FB group my pieces yet! I have a limited supply of glass powders, so I tried a couple I had. I like two of the three pieces I made and will slump them in molds next. They are very simple. The top piece is a 6" square and the bottom is 4" x 10". Isn't it interesting how the powder separates into puddles?! Am I going to order a few more new colors? You know I will ...


I know ... every year I show you photos of my artichokes. These plants are so amazing. I started with little two plants from my friend Jean. One didn't make it. The last couple years I had two plants ... and this year there are three! Here are photos just before I cut off the two largest artichokes.

I planted ten tomato plants a month ago (my reasoning is "something always happens ..."), as well as zucchini and cucumber plants. I have a few green tomatoes on almost every plant, so things are looking promising for BLTs and sharing tomatoes with friends.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


I finished the three cuffs that were cut with the feather pancake die and hydraulic press and want to share them here. Can't decide which one is my favorite! I need to leave my metal work for a while to give my right shoulder a chance to rest. It's been crying out, "Help! Stop!" I still have my feather earrings to finish by adding ear wires. They are wonderful! No more hammering needed there.

Saturday, April 4, 2015


I used my new Sissix BigShot the other day to make a few napkin rings. They turned out so well! I dipped them into patina yesterday and gave them a gloss coating to protect their finish.

Check out my Etsy shop with lots of napkins and other hand made items!