Saturday, June 12, 2010

School is over :( :) :(

Just finished a week @ William Holland Lapidary School - I took advanced chainmaille, again, because I have an advanced chain addiction.

Saw lots of old friends, made some new friends- and had a terrific week.

Here is almost everything I made during the week - several pairs of earrings and a bracelet didn't get done in time for the traditional Friday morning show-and-tell. The projects below that still have paper clips attached to them are WIPs -  the 2 uppermost ones are JPLs, or Jen's Pind; one in 14 gauge GF rings, and the other in 20 gauge copper, silver, and GF rings. I can only do so much JPL without taking a break from it! It can drive you crazy! Plus closing those 14 gauge rings was a little tough on my hands.

The silver WIP near the bottom of the tray is the very beginning of a 3-row sterling silver scarf-type lariat, made with teeny tiny rings - when completed, it will be between 6 and 7 ounces of sterling silver. In other words, lots and lots of rings!

I usually am more productive during these weeks @ William Holland - I stay up until 2 or 3 AM working on stuff, and get up early and chain some more, and chain straight through meals while everyone else is eating.

But this week, between my pain meds and my pain, I just was dragging. And that is the reason for my smiley and frowny faces on the title post - I'm glad the week's over, because I am so tired and drained, but I am sad, because William Holland is always a blast, and I always learn so much!

And here is my favorite project - one which didn't make it into show-and-tell. I made this bolo tie, from scratch, for one of the chain teachers - and he wouldn't take it off for show-and-tell, but he did strut around showing it off. I made the dichroic glass cab, and then cut the enamelled copper blue and yellow rings I used to create the bezel, and then I glued the bolo gizmo to the back -

The lucky receipient is the husband of my chainmaille teacher, a big fan of bolo ties. We call him "Lord of the Rings" because he cuts all the thousands of jumprings that we demanding students as for during the week, and he tumbles all our finished projects, and he also helps his wife with some of the teaching.

And he also makes these incredible lead castings of ant colonies:

This is a casting of a bull ant colony. What you are seeing is actually an inverted colony - the portion of the casting that sits on the table is what was at ground level, and then the colony branched out below it underground - so you are seeing the actually colony and its pods upside down. Bill painted this bull ant casting a lovely black and gold color. He puts these on little rotating lazy-susan type bases, and you can spin them and see all sides of them. This black and gold one is at the bead shop.
This is a casting of a fire ant colony - again, what you are seeing is inverted from the way it was in real life (before the hot molten lead was poured into the colony!) Look how much busier, and more frantic, the colony structure is. I love the blue color on this one - it matches my living room perfectly!
These ant colony castings are works of art, in my opinion, and I wish I had more of them. Bill has really cut back on the number of these he makes - the lead is getting too heavy!

I'll be driving home tomorrow, and then I have my pre-op appointment at the hospital on Monday. Then back to the bead shop Tuesday.

Here's hoping the surgery doesn't sideline me from chaining for too long  - I'm anxious to get back to my WIPs!


PussDaddy said...

I am assuming WIP means work in progress, the other acronyms I have no idea what they mean. Just stoppping in to see how you are doing and to wish you well with your surgery.


Sweet Freedom said...

You assume correctly, PD, and thanks for the wishes. 5 more days 'til surgery - and I am taking classes for 3 of those 5, so the time will fly!

PussDaddy said...

Hi dear. I am just checking in to see if you had surgery and how you are doing? Although I realize it is a bit too soon to be up and blogging, lol. Just wanted you to know that someone cares tho. Update us when you feel up to it and get better soon.


Sweet Freedom said...

Hey PD - thanks! I did a post just for you!

And may I just say, I feel so tongue-tied when I read your blog -- I want to comment!!

PussDaddy said...

Thanks for saying that but in all honesty I am not missing Etsy or blogging much. I like it better with the comments off. That way I can just say whatever and leave it and not have to argue with everyone. I don't miss Etsy either to tell you the truth. If I want to buy anything I know what people to go to to buy it without Etsy. And I am not tweeting much either and would like to tweet even less than I do. I try to leave blog posts that don't really need much commenting but I know it is annoying when you want to commment and can't. One day I may remove the whole blog.


Sweet Freedom said...

I understand,PD - I just really enjoying reading your stuff! But I truly understand about the arguing, etc!