Cloisonne

This week I finish up the first 8 week session of Intro Enameling. The last two weeks the students learned how to do cloisonne, the technique of inlaying and packing enamel around thin silver or copper wires. Most people would be most familiar with this technique on vases and beads, the result is beautiful and intricate, resembling stained glass.
As usual, great results!  This raindrop pendant (above) was made by Sonia Ho. Below is a reed pendant by Amanda DelaCruz. It is worth checking out Amanda’s blog as well, she has great photos of the cloisonne process.
Upcoming classes are scheduled for the following dates:
8 Week Intro/Intermediate Enameling, starts Thursday, March 25 6:30pm to 9:30pm
1 Day Enamel Workshop (Pendant and Earrings) Sunday March 21, 10am to 6pm
Send the studio an email if you are interested! info@jewelenvy.ca or call 647.436.6709
This is a brief blog entry in comparison, but I must get back to work! 
Remember you may become a fan of Emily Gill Jewellery Design on Facebook, or join the group.
Hopefully it stops raining soon……………….
– Emily

Enamel Class Photos

Hi everyone! Today I brought my camera in to the studio to snap a few shot of my talented students in action. Only two more classes in this session after tonight, 6 weeks have gone by so fast! I have listed upcoming class dates at the bottom of this post!

So far we have learned so many techniques, and completed a stenciling project, some students used lace to make a really cool pattern, others hand-cut stencils. In our most recent project, Sonia completed a miniature watercolour painting in a little brass frame which hangs askew around the neck. It is so adorable. Zeine made a really intricate origami-like shape from flat copper sheet enamelled with my favorite lime green, Amanda has been working on these great organic pod shapes which she made in the hydraulic press, and Padrin’s teeth inspired pendant is so mesmerizing. Really cool work. I love the dimension and volume they have gotten through this exploration of copper with enamel.



I showed the students how to do cloisonne enamel tonight for the next and final project. This process involved packing wet enamel powder in between thin copper, gold or fine silver wires and firing. I made this cute little guy as a demonstration, only to realize he looks like Alexis’ funny bug eyed toy who lives on her jewellery bench. They could be brothers! (See below)



Right: Sonia working on her miniature painting








Amanda sifting enamel onto one of many pods







Padrin removing his pendant from the kiln after firing!



Me firing a sample. 
Soon to become:


Cloisonne guy! aka, Popeye or Bugsy, on the right.

Next week we are in the home stretch with 2 classes to go, everyone will be working on cloisonne designs. I will be sad when class is over, we’ve had a really good time and I have really loved teaching this first enamel class here.

Next class will be a combination Intro/Intermediate Enamelling course, beginning on Thursday March 25th for 8 weeks. 

Introductory Enameling: Learn the basics of firing glass powder onto copper, metal preparation, various firing stages/textures, using opaque and transparent enamels, stenciling, drawing and painting on enamel, building hollow copper objects to enamel, enameling 3 dimensional objects, wet inlay and cloisonne. No jewellery/enamel experience necessary, the basics of piercing and drilling will be taught so everyone has a chance to design their own unique shapes to enamel!

Intermediate Enamelling for Jewellery: will explore the possibilities of enamel in finished pieces of sterling silver jewellery. We will learn and elaborate on enamel techniques, with a focus on multiples, bezel setting, prongs or tabs and rivetting enamelled components to fabricated jewellery designs. Prerequisites for Intermediate are: Intro to enamelling and Intro to Fabrication or other fabrication experience. Visit our website to see all courses and for registration information. www.jewelenvy.ca

One day enamel workshops for March 2010 (make a pendant with stenciled design and matching earrings, or two pendants)
Saturday, March 13 from 10:00am to 6:00pm 
Sunday, March 21 from 10:00am to 6:00pm

Hope you can join us for a colourful one day or 8 week class!

Bye for now!

Emily





Some people sing in the shower, I sing disco while working alone at the studio

First of all, happy new year to all our blog followers from me, Emily.

This year brings a few new changes, and a busy schedule for me. I have recently made the switch to full time member and changed benches. As some of you know, I work part time as a florist (yes, I love flowers…..!) and come here to Jewel Envy everyday after my morning shift whipping up floral deliveries to brighten people’s days. Although I have lived in Toronto for about 9 months now, I feel more settled than ever, really enjoying my studio work, friendships with all the girls (yes, we are all girls at the moment) here and networking with other crafts people and jewellers. My eventual goal is to work full time and survive from my jewellery, but I am finding a happy balance with my part time job, which is important. I won’t be leaving Toronto any time soon 🙂
I have been working what feels like non-stop since returning from Montreal after the holidays. I started teaching my Introductory Enamelling class two weeks ago, and love my students! Laura, our co-op student, although new to enamelling, is a HUGE help as my assistant. Thanks Laura!
Just when I thought I could have a little break a slew of shows I want to apply for or participate popped up!
In Halifax, my friend and jeweller Vanessa Neily is curating Adornable, an exhibition of work by selected NSCAD jewellery and metalsmithing alumni. Its going to be so cute and whimsical, I am totally into it! The show will run in the summer (you should also check out her website, her stuff is incredible http://www.vanessaneily.com)
I am particularily tickled by the invitation by Lafreniere & Pai Gallery to participate in their tenth year anniversary show entitled “Eros from Chaos” an exhibition of erotic jewellery and sculpture running in May in Ottawa. Ooh la la. I have a plethora of ideas 😉
The icing on the cake will be the Jewel Envy group show, which we have just started planning. No set dates yet, but we will keep you informed!
Now I must get back to work. I’ve been here almost every night until at least 9pm with Young, who is attempting to make her first Mokume ring. Last night, however, was a record late night, leaving here at 12:35am exhausted, but very content with the amount of work I completed. Sometimes it is great to work until you can’t anymore. I prefer having a working buddy those late nights; too bad no one else gets to see how my late night enamel-dance moves improved and I now can do a rendition of Thelma Houston’s “Don’t Leave Me This Way” disco tune pretty much accapella. Yikes!
Disco is cheerful, and so are my happy little brooches. Take a peek at how they transformed.
I sift enamel powder (a form of powdered glass) onto the hand formed copper flowers. 
And from my powdery bench, I put the little guy on a steel trivet. He is ready to bake!
Into the kiln at about 1500 degrees fahrenheit for about 2-3 minutes…..until they get nice and glossy.
Et voila! So many happy brooches!
I am also making more necklaces with this form. My bench is a garden of colour when I have them all out.
I love enamelling. I couldn’t live (or make jewellery) without it!
– Emily
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