Thursday, February 3, 2011

Wirework – What's Ancient Becomes New Again

When I first started doing polymer clay, I knew I wanted to incorporate metal into my work. There was something for me about metal as a supporting cast member that was important. Something about it that gave weight and stability to clay-- more than adding mere actual grams and ounces--grounded it, if you will.

Metal plays such a large part in our world of jewelry-making. Clasps, chain, bezels, jumprings-- all have their own special design capabilities and can be so much more than adjuncts to gemstones and beads.

As I was writing this blog this morning, I dug out some pieces I've made in the last year and found that more and more I depend on wire to provide an important design element.

From Kandinsky necklace

Copper wire experiment

Focal from Dark and Stormy Night necklace - Available in my Etsy shop

Wire element from unfinished necklace

Detail from Silk Road necklace

Clasp from Dzi bead necklace

Last year I sent a selection of my beads to a good friend, Cindy Wimmer who had been invited to submit projects for a new wire book by Denise Peck, editor of Step by Step Wire Magazine and author of 101 Wire Earrings and Wire Style.

I'm happy and proud to tell you that my little "Fallen to Earth" polymer focal pendant and beads are now gracing the pages of Wire Style 2, strikingly showcased in Cindy Wimmer's necklace of the same name. I haven't seen the book yet so I don't know if there are polymer beads used in other artists' work but I thank Cindy for championing the use of polymer beads in wire work in an important popular venue such as this. In the past I've provided beads for other artists such as Sharon Borsavage and Deryn Mentock and seen what amazing things a talented designer can do with them.

Rambler by Live Wire Jewelry - Pale blue faux jade beads by Stories They Tell

Vedauvoo Blooms by Deryn Mentock - Large beads by Stories They Tell

Among other contributors to the book are Kerry Bogert and Lisa Niven Kelly, whose informative and comprehensive website Beaducation has taught me so much about using metal and wire. Wire Style 2 is available now from the Interweave site and after March 1 from other booksellers.

Fallen to Earth beads

Fallen to Earth pendant


  1. Can't wait to get a copy of this book!
    Enjoy the day!

  2. Ooh, I love this one "Clasp from Dzi bead necklace"...very cool!

  3. Congratulations!
    I love the connecting in this community. And looking forward to seeing your beads in the book.

  4. I really wish I could do wire as well as you guys can!