When I received this charming, coral Buddha figurine, I knew I wanted to do something special with it and give it a little home, if you will. The result was this Buddha in a Box, a charm that’s roughly 1½ inches tall, designed to be worn on a necklace or hung on a pretty cord for display.
The box is made from oxidized silver. Behind the Buddha’s head is a gold halo. I made this by thinly rolling a piece of gold and soldering it to the silver behind the Buddha’s head. The Buddha figure is held in place by two small prongs atop each shoulder. The two beads on the top right of the box are made from cut glass. These look like little lanterns.
I enjoy the way the asymmetry of the box and the organic texture of the oxidized silver and rolled gold add a touch of whimsy to this fun piece. The tiny smile on this miniature Buddha may be small, but it certainly brightens the room!
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Rutilated quartz is a transparent variety of quartz with naturally occurring thread-like pigmentation called rutile inclusions. The inclusions range from thin to thick and sparse to dense and can run parallel or crisscrossed. The inclusions are usually reddish, gold, black, silver, or, rarely, greenish. Each manifestation of rutilation is different, so every piece of rutilated quartz is unique. Although inclusions are typically considered flaws when they’re present in precious gems, they lend a special, ornamental quality to quartz.
In the crystal healing tradition, rutilated quartz is associated with enhancing mental focus and getting energy moving. Practitioners of crystal healing believe rutilated quartz is connected to the solar plexus chakra (the third chakra), the core of an individual’s self-esteem and willpower.
Whether or not you believe that rutilated quartz can play a role in fire-powering your day, it’s hard to deny that these stones are just cool. I recently made these earrings with slices of rutilated quartz.
They feature two varieties of rutilated quartz—quartz with gold inclusions and quartz with black inclusions. The stones are set with an open back to allow light to shine through the quartz. The gold rutilated quartz is set in 22-karat gold while the black rutilated quartz is set in silver. I created cuts around the silver bezel settings to add texture and a sense of depth.
If you’re wondering what the earrings are hanging on, that’s a tool used to measure the height of metal objects when forming them. The pointy ends are used to etch level lines. It also makes for a handy way to display earrings!
While on the subject of quartz, I also wanted to share this raw quartz necklace. The chunk of quartz is set in 22-karat gold and is displayed on a thread of sapphires. This piece is just one example of how semi-precious and precious stones can beautifully complement each other.
When I create new jewelry designs, the process often involves a good bit of play and organic discovery. Like cooking without a recipe, I take a little bit of this and a little bit of that until I have a piece that’s complete and pleasing to the eye.
I recently created this necklace and complementing earring set using a variety of stones with various textures. For the necklace, I used tourmaline, opal, green garnet, and iolite—some stones are faceted while others are not. I soldered clusters of stones together and used granules to separate the clusters. I then attached the resulting product to a leather necklace cord. I’m calling this the “mermaid necklace” because the beautiful blues and greens remind me of the ocean—not to mention the luster of the stones recalls the glint of sunshine on sea water.
For the earrings, I also went for a fun yet pretty touch and made them asymmetrical. Stones in the right earring include turquoise, blue zircon, and sapphire. Stones in the left earring include _____, ____, and turquoise. Each of the stones are bezel set, but you’ll notice that one bezel setting on each earring has a different texture; these bezel settings were hammered to add a touch of organic texture. Although the earrings are asymmetrical, they hang at the same length.
The metal used in the earrings and the necklace is 22 karat gold.
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Untangling your jewelry doesn't have to be be a chore. Next time your necklace has a knot, try this simple trick - Even the most careful among us find ourselves with a case of the dreaded tangled necklace chain. (Doesn’t it seem that our most delicate jewelry likes to tangle itself as soon as we look the other direction?) Initially, the problem may seem near impossible—no matter how nimble our fingers. Even a small, simple knot on a single chain can try our patience.
Fortunately, there’s an easy DIY solution to this common issue.