Eilisain aka Lisette in Gaelic

Welcome to my blog, where I document my process in making jewelry, muse on the influence of art and the joy of making beautiful objects.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


With all the websites and blogs I’ve been reading lately, I came to a conclusion: I need to push myself; to get off the couch and make new and different pieces with all the scrap jewelry I have. I want to push my boundaries, in terms of materials and expression.

A new project as emerged from a group of artists called Radical Jewelry Makeover, which is a project of Ethical Metalsmiths a non-profit organization dedicated to connecting people with responsibly sourced metals and gemstones. You can read more about their project on the blog. What I love about the concept is that it not only works to recycle and reuse old, discarded and unused jewelry but to challenge the jeweler/artist to create a new object out of different materials thus giving the piece a varied and fascinating landscape. For example, Amy Tavern’s necklace is so cool for her use of silver, green thread and faux gems.

Tonight I tentatively began my own 'radical jewelry makeover', though I wouldn't call this 'radical'. However I do have plans to convert some old clip-on faux gem earrings into a pendant. I love the mix of faux pearls and silver chain on the necklace I made tonight, from an old silver bracelet used for charms, some scrap chain pieces I've had and some pearls my Mom wasn't using.

What I look for in other artists that I admire and aspire to be like, are ones that give texture, quality and thought to their pieces. And I’ve increasingly found European, specifically German, Dutch and Australian jewelers to be leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of us (Americans). That’s not to say that we don’t have our own pool of brilliant artists but they just have such a rich and imaginative way of expressing themselves. I’m constantly in awe.

For example Isabel Schaupp mixes enameled silver with oxidized silver, I love her use of mesh wire layered with the enamel and silver.

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