Wednesday, May 09, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 19

I missed weeks 17 and 18 due to a personal tragedy. My grandmother passed away midweek the week of April 23rd. I'm still grappling with the loss of an amazing, kind, and creative woman that was an immense driving force in who I am today. It was unexpected and I only hope she knows how much I love her and how important she is to me.

It's definitely made me reevaluate how I interact with people I care about- I've been such a hermit over the last couple of years and I realize I have to reach out and stop hiding, even if it is my studio I take to when I feel like I need to check out from the world at large.

It's also made me aware that I should tell people what's going on with me so they don't think I am just avoiding them. We have to remove the stigma from mental illness- that's the only way we can heal as a society and as individuals.
I have been dealing with depression and anxiety for most of my adult life- in the last two/three years, it's gone up a few notches. I used to love big groups, concerts, festivals- now they send me into a panic attack. Small groups and one-on-ones have their own issues, and sometimes I just have to say it's ok to hide. Nanny would NOT have wanted me to live my life like this. I don't want to live my life like this. So, if you feel like I've avoided you or acted oddly around you, please don't think it's your fault.

Making things has been my life-line to staying involved with people. Teaching allows me to be kind of someone else. I become Teacher Brandy, and somehow I can deal better with all the scummy-brain stuff that keeps me awake all night, and I have confidence that slips away from me normally. 

I've been fortunate enough to have a wonderful group of friends (and family) that come to my classes and ask me to make special custom pieces for them. You guys have helped me more than you know.

This week's ring is not quite finished, but it is a custom piece for a wonderful lady that has been an amazing supporter of my work and I absolutely *love* making pieces for her- I know she falls in love with the stones just like I do. :) Labradorite supplied by her- silver by me. :) The back will have a cut out of a star after we do the sizing.

Monday, April 16, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 16

This week's ring is a fine silver creeping raspberry leaf atop a 4mm wide plain rectangle band. the band is super comfortable and complements the excellent texture of the leaf, which has a light patina with greens, golds, and bronze tones to it.

Monday, April 09, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 15

This statement ring is made with a cabochon from a (former) local Memphis artist (he's still around- just moved to the other side of TN). paired with a lovely sterling gallery wire and a simple wide band that keeps it securely in place, it's a solid ring, great for special occasions or everyday wear.

Monday, April 02, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 14

this Treasure Mountain turquoise is paired with sterling silver and gold fill. I like the mixed metals with the variety of colors in the stone.

(and yes, i did tap those prongs down a little more after this picture. I was just so excited with how it turned out!)

Monday, March 26, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 13

Featuring treasure mountain turquoise and a lovely little cast succulent, this is week 13 in my 52 week maker challenge. (shown on a lovely piece of wood that became an even more lovely pendant!)

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 12

I spent the evening of the spring equinox making- seemed fitting. This is the most recent ring in my 52 pieces challenge series. 

I call her The Oracle. A lovely cultured opal is set in a crown bezel. Fine silver planchettes flank the setting. The band is stamped with Yes, no, and goodbye, along with some fun stars. All Sterling and fine silver. Will be available in the etsy store soon!

Monday, March 12, 2018

2018 ~ 52 ring challenge - week 10 &11

I was on vacation the first week of March, so I had to play catch up this week. Then I forgot to post, so here are weeks 10 and 11 in one post. :)

I'm teaching a class this saturday on alternative stone setting techniques, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to make some pieces and take photos for my hand outs- here are the two techniques I did- Faceted bezel set stones and 'Fenced' stones (i know there has to be a name for that kind of setting, but it reminds me of those old little wire fences people would have around their flowerbeds back in the day... )

Lab grown alexandrite set in sterling custom stepped bezel

Dichroic glass set in sterling with stamped band