news from the workshop: silver birch

silver birch bangle
silver birch bangle
One way or another, I’ve mostly been working on designs inspired by the bark of the silver birch tree for the past few days. I usually apply the distinctive texture using the edge of an old and slightly pitted hammer, but I decided to try something slightly different with the bangle pictured above. It’s made from 3mm diameter round wire, which is chunky enough to work on with a fine file. I was able to get much deeper marks than I do with the hammer, and to vary how much I bit into the silver. I’m rather pleased with the result, which looks like a very thin section cut through a slender tree trunk.

It was back to the hammer for my other pieces. The pendant is a design that I have made before, and it will replace one that I sold to a customer in the USA. The ring pictured bottom right is a new design. It’s an open band, which sits on the finger with the gap at the front.

No sooner had I got those finished, than I received an order for my spiral silver birch ring, which is in the two photos bottom left. I make these to order once I know the size required.

Obviously all of this hammering is hard work, some some sustenance and some musical accompaniment is required. I’ve got a bit of a thing for amaretti biscuits at the moment. Also amaretto liqueur, truth be told, but not whilst I’m wielding sharp and/or heavy implements. I’ve been listening to the Kings of Convenience, who feel just right for this time of year somehow.

Everything is now finished. The spiral ring has been sent off to its new owner (it’s a birthday present, so I hope the recipient likes it), and the other new pieces are for sale in my online shop. I’m now thinking about what to do next. Maybe I’ll give the silver birch a rest, just for a few days.

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