Wednesday, May 02, 2012


Here is a sampler of some of the toggle clasps I have been making as a result of taking Deryn Mentok's on line class The Art of Closure. I have been learning how to use the Lenk small torch which has a flame that is hot enough to put a nice ball end on heavy gauge copper wire.  First I had to overcome torch anxiety and then to learn the art of finding that special spot where the flame is really hot.  I have spent quite a bit of time on this part of the course but now after several weeks of making myself turn the torch on each time I am in my studio, I feel confident and comfortable loading it with fuel, turning it on, and in finding the hot spot.  Best of all, I just love using it.  Another good thing...I am just half way through the course and have all of May to work on the last 2 sets of video tutorials about wraps and other kinds of closures!!
At the bottom of this photo you can see my first attempts at making earwires  (not actually part of the course but Deryn has a wonderful tutorial on making them on her blog.)   I am going to practice some more with the copper and then I will dig into my sterling silver wire that I bought for the course and begin making my own ear wires.
Although the registration for this course is closed, I see that she is offering her Boho Bliss  Hoops course in June. You can find out more about it here.  You can be sure I will be taking that one too.  Deryn rocks as a teacher!!  And her jewelry is sooo beautiful!!


                                              a close up shot of some of the clasp bars


14 comments:

  1. Those clasps look beautiful with your ceramic rounds.

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  2. thank you so much LeAnn--great to hear from you!

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  3. Beautiful clasps! The class sounds wonderful and I wish I could have taken it. Unfortunately I work better in a classroom setting and have wasted a fortune on on-line classes. So would you recommend the lenk torch? I'm looking for a new one that will ball heavy gauge wire.

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  4. Thank you Alice. Yes I do recommend the Lenk LPT 500 torch. I got mine from Amazon but you can also get it at ACE hardware or Sears but in this rural area they would have had to order it and Amazon was cheaper for me. I think it is a wonderful handy and easy to use torch (now that I feel comfortable with it)

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  5. Beautiful work, Mary! The wirework really complements your wonderful ceramic components. Like you, I also had torch anxiety but this class is helping me to overcome that, bit by bit. Great idea to turn the torch on everytime you go in your studio. Congratulations on your newfound confidence! Well done.
    Cheers,
    Karen

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    1. Thank you Karen. I am glad to know you are overcoming yours too. This class has really helped, as you say. At first I had to force myself to turn it on but now I look forward to it.

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  6. Gorgeous work! Really great additions to your ceramic pieces. I took a soldering class at Bead Fest last August; it was my first time using a torch and it also took me a bit to get over my flame anxiety!

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  7. OMG! your clasps and closures are absolutley gorgeous! I recently purchased the same torch..loving it, tho there was a learning curve involved!

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  8. Lovely! I wanted to take this class so badly. Maybe she will offer it again when I have some free time (!). I like the one with the turquoise bead in the middle. This will surely take your toggles in new directions! Enjoy the day.
    Erin

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  9. How delicious! Really great job and I'm glad we are having so much fun in this class.

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  10. Gorgeous work, Mary. Thanks for joining me in class!

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  11. Dianne Stevens2/5/12 18:20

    Beautiful pieces! Wonderful class!

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  12. Lookin good Miss Mary.....can't wait for Boho.....xox

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  13. Beautiful work Mary - that combo is going to be a great seller I'm sure!

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Raku Bead Video Part III