Wednesday, April 21, 2010

New Technique!

I stumbled upon a new technique for wire-wrapping briolettes and teardrops: using headpins. As an example, take a peak at nonakednecks "Rose Quartz Trio" earrings.

If you're not a jewelry maker, or if you've never wire-wrapped before, you probably have no idea what I'm talking about.

For those of you who do know, I thought I'd share this with you. I am currently infatuated with briolette shapes, but they always give me trouble when I try to wire-wrap them. My biggest problem is with tiny brios - I tend to break them in the wrapping process. It is very frustrating to invest in sapphires and watch them crumble in my hands because I used too much force.

My hands just don't have the strength they used to. I also have problems with shaky hands and mild arthritis. This is not the best combination when trying to do wire wrapping!

But when I saw some earrings using briolettes wire-wrapped with headpins, I felt like I'd stumbled upon a miracle! I am dying to try this out for myself, because I think I'll have an easier time manipulating the wire and beads. Plus, there is a little less wire involved, so the stones get to show off a little more of their natural beauty. It seems to let more light hit the beads so they appear just a bit brighter.

Something I've debated with myself in the past is the line between learning or finding inspiration from another person's work, versus stealing. Every artist in every medium uses a bit of something they learned from someone else, something they saw somewhere else, something that inspired them into emulation. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?

Well, I had this debate with myself earlier today. I had never seen this technique before, never heard of it, never thought of it on my own. It is such a small change to a basic technique, how come everyone else wasn't doing it too? I worried that it was so rare that maybe it was someone's trademark. I would feel very bad to rip-off anyone's signature style. So I quested, courtesy of Google and Etsy.

After an exhausting (and yet not exhaustive) search, I now know there aren't many people out there using this technique. However, there are definitely enough designers out there who are using it to nullify my concern over infringement. You should check out their stuff - it's all gorgeous!

jahnavidesigns, passementerie, GaHooleTree, isler, shopshrew, ACelticgirl2, theodate, CoryellDesign, elainehaydonjewelry

Does anyone disagree with my conclusion?