Wedding Jewelry

Wedding Jewelry
Wedding Jewelry

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Feeling Gothic

It's spring- the sun is shining and the daffodils are in bloom, but for some reason, I'm loving the gothic right now. Here's a sketch of my new gargoyle necklace. He'll be holding a black drop pearl, and I have some gorgeous blood red ruby beads to string him up with. Very fancy, indeed! Well, I better go start cutting out some silver...

Monday, March 30, 2015

Come visit my studio this weekend!

Cedar Creek Gallery is hosting the 43rd Annual Spring Pottery & Glass Festival the first two weekends in April. All the studio artists will fling open our doors and you are invited to come see how it's all made.  I'll be making jewelry in my studio, Lisa Oakley will be blowing some glass, plus other glass and ceramic artists will be demonstrating.  It will be fun for the whole family!

For more info, visit:

Cedar Creek Gallery
1150 Fleming Rd.
Creedmoor, NC 27522

For the opening, I created a little "How it's Made" photo montage.  It documents every step of the creation process:

A sketch is made of the design and the enamel colors are chosen.
The designs are printed out on paper and glued to a sheet of fine silver.  Holes are drilled in the middle pieces to allow the saw blade to be threaded through and make the interior cuts.
The interior shapes are cut out first.
The exterior shapes are cut out and sides are filed smooth.
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The bases are cut out.  They are larger than the top pieces.
A copper solution is painted on the reverse side where the two sheets of silver touch.  This will lower the melting temperature and allow for easier fusing.
The pieces are set on a tripod and torched from below until they are fused into one solid piece.
The extra material is cut away and the base is ground smooth.
Texture is added with a scribe.
The base is domed using a soft mallet. 
To prevent cloudiness in the finished enamel color, the enamels are "washed" 7-9 times in distilled water.  A small amount of powder is placed in a cup, topped with water, and allowed to settle.  The water is then poured off, along with the impurities.
The enamel is washed and ready to apply!
Different gauges of fine silver wire are flatted using a rolling mill.
The wires are shaped into swirls and circles to match the design.
The wires are arranged on sticky tape that will hold them in place until ready to be used.
After two coats of colored enamel on the reverse of the base, a fine coat of clear enamel is fired in the kiln.
The wires are carefully positioned in the base.  Clear enamel is sifted gently on top, and the piece is fired in the kiln.  For more complicated designs, this may be done in stages.
After firing, the wires are gently pushed down with fingers to make sure they are flush with the base.
The colored enamels are placed between the wires using a fine sable brush.
The colors can be blended using water.
Before firing, the enamels are allowed to dry thoroughly.  If wet enamels are placed in the kiln, there will be air bubbles.
The layers of enamel are built up until they are higher than the exterior of the silver. 
The piece is affixed with wax to a wooden shim, and the top coat is ground flush to the metal.
After the first grind, the glass and silver are polished by hand using progressively finer sheets of wet sandpaper.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Hairstyles for 1950s and 1960s vintage wedding dresses

Dear Reader, 

I confess I have a special interest in hair: I spent 20 years as a hairdresser specialising in designer fashion shows and fashion shoots. And I always loved creating wedding hairstyles, as it's an opportunity to do something really special. 
What an icon! Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly in BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S, 1961
In my last post, I looked at hairstyles that suit 1930s and 1940s vintage wedding dresses. Today, I'm going to suggest a few styles that rock with 1950s and 1960s vintage wedding dresses. 

In the 50s, hair was still worn wavy - but often shorter and more layered than in earlier decades. It would still be set with rollers, but now the curls would be slightly looser.
And the ultimate 1950s icon, Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe is the perfect example. This classic style can still work wonderfully today, as in Katherine Heigl's glamorous red carpet look. 
Katherine Heigl wearing 1950s Marilyn waves
Marilyn Monroe, 1950s platinum blonde
Scarlett Johansson, the modern blonde bombshell
Another instantly recognisable 1950s movie icon is Grace Kelly. In contrast, Grace Kelly's more sleek look represented immaculately groomed young ladies everywhere - a picture of elegance and modesty.
Grace Kelly, a more restrained 1950s glamour
Grace Kelly, always elegant
But the 50s was a decade of huge change. And for the other extreme, just look at Brigitte Bardot in 'And God Created Woman' (check out the fabulous trailer below!) Bardot's tumbling sexy curls hold a promise of the wilder decade to follow!
Brigitte Bardot, Ooh-la-la!
The 60s was all about volume and backcombing, and is typified for me by two stars, Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s from 1961, and the tousled blonde curls and high up-dos of Brigitte Bardot.
I recommend taking from each decade what suits you and making it your own. So if you love 1960s style, you don’t have to go for huge amounts of volume to get the look. I also love Tippi Hedren’s ultra-groomed hair in the wonderful Hitchcock film 'The Birds'.
Ice blonde Tippi Hedren in THE BIRDS
This is a look that is often worn on the red carpet today. I've included lots of examples of contemporary versions below, for inspiration.
Angelina Jolie in sophisticated 60s style
Brigitte Bardot's tousled appeal
Bardot-inspired messy chignon with backcombing
Bardot with tousled backcombing
Kelly Brook with sleek 1960s inspired updo
Sophie Ellis Bextor with pretty 1960s-style backcombing
Penelope Cruz
Gwyneth Paltrow does 1960s chic 
Sexy 60s styles: Rachel McAdam, Sarah Jessica Parker & Scarlett Johansson
I hope you've enjoyed this little trip around the world of vintage-inspired wedding hair! Next time, I'll suggest hairstyles for 1970s vintage wedding dresses, and I'll show you some divine styles for short wedding hair. 

Thanks for stopping by,
Heavenly Vintage Brides