Tag Archives: peninsula school of art

Merry Christmas!

drusy cobalt necklace

Drusy Cobaltocalcite Necklace

Amazing Pink!

drusy necklace sterling silver

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/216136930/pink-drusy-cobaltocalcite-stone-sterling?ref=shop_home_active_4

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Azurite and Aquamarine Necklace

One of the most interesting stones I have ever made into a necklace. It is like a miniature landscape of a mountain and a valley.

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Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/216137416/azurite-specimen-stone-sterling-silver?ref=listing-shop-header-2DSC_0072

Velvet Malachite…

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Link:https://www.etsy.com/listing/216142103/azurite-malachite-drusy-necklace?ref=shop_home_active_2

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Last minute shopping on the go… Good friend and customer wanted a gift so I brought the store to him on the tailgate of our truck in the parking lot of the mall. Honestly, I have done this a lot. I live in ‘Nowheresville’ so I have often brought the store to the customer especially this time of year. I gift wrapped it and everything for him. No different the mall, right? Talk about low overhead. (Well, I guess pickup trucks are not the cheap these days.)

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Cookie Fest 2014

Every year we decorate cookies with the Aunties… The guys don’t really decorate much they just eat and goof off. Notice the ‘mice’ they were really easy and fun to make. Chocolate covered cherry with the stem as the the tail, white striped Herseys kiss face, almond slice ears, on an oreo cookie. If you google Chocolate Cherry Mice the recipe comes right up…. very simple. I am not really a fan of dessert, lucky thing, I would rather eat a steak or drink a cold beer than waste the calorie on a cookie.

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Clay Mathews Christmas Cookie made by Gabrielle ~ for all of you Green Bay Packers Fans ~ The frosting on this one will put anyone over the edge… Blood sugar 1500….

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My son Wyatt having a good time with some goofy antlers of his Aunts on his head.

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This is Aunt Jenny and Aunt Margo, cousin Gabrielle, the awesome neighbor kid Autumn and Savannah my daughter making, making, making….cookies and a mess.

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This is the only way my husband lets his picture be taken. This is an exact replica of my husband Bill. (Ok, he doesn’t wear shirts like that… his shirts are mostly black and have a Harley Davidson something on them ~ and we forgot the boots.)

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C-Fest 2014 (cookie fest) painted on the snowbank while the guys play football, dog plays too. After the cookies are made we head to the Rockin K Ranch in Greenleaf, Wisconsin. This ranch gives sleigh rides (or wagon rides if there is not enough snow) and drops you off in the woods at a bonfire ~every family has their own bonfire in the woods, privately. They pick you up whenever you say so ~ hour or two. We bring popcorn, hot chocolate and some family trivia the kids make up. It’s really fun and a nice way to spend the evening together being festive and getting in the spirit. The Rockin K Ranch does it right. Thanks for another fun night at your farm. If you have little kids or a company party it’s a really fun time doing something simple and little old fashion.

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Terrible pic… sorry it’s all I have…

off we go out to the woods on our horse ride… That is my brother in law standing next to me with his thumb up.

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Merry Christmas Everyone!

I hope you have a peaceful Christmas with friends and family and are happily looking forward to 2015.

Finalized piece from my last post…  The trillion cut stones I could have never set without Gerry Lewy’s stone setting class. Thanks Gerry. I am sure Gerry, sitting up in Toronto Canada, has no idea I use his teachings almost daily. He will be teaching at Peninsula School of Art in Fish Creek Door Co. next summer. If you can possibly take the class ~ take it… It’s amazing. Now I need to learn bright setting and engraving from him. If only I could live longer. http://www.peninsulaschoolofart.com

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18K Gold, Sterling, Vista Jasper, London Blue Topaz, Tourmaline….

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/215635351/18k-gold-sterling-silver-stone-necklace?ref=shop_home_active_3

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ETSY Shop Class & Metalsmithing Class Great Success

IMG_2893Great week at Peninsula School of Art in Fish Creek Door Co. Two day class, ‘Lauching Your Etsy Shop,’ was a great success. It had in my mind a potential to bomb… I had to rely on technology hooking up to screens and wifi working for every student and students bringing their own computers/ipads: all different with all different programs on them for photos.

Hooray! It was fine. Everyone opened a shop. Everyone edited pics. Everyone made a banner. Everyone worked their way through the site and created listings, shop policy, shipping criteria, etc… It was fun to see every student get a way to sell their work. We all had different artistic backgrounds as well: painter, vintage collector, and jewelry.

Murphy’s Law…. second day of class: ETSY changes the format to about half of the sellers shop pages. ETSY had announced they were going to make some changes months ago and gradually launch the changes…. Ha!!!!!!! Tricks on me 🙂 Half of us had pages that looked very different from the other half…. essentially it was fine. Same content just different look and different icons. I just chucked at the irony that it took place mid-class. This class will be offered again next year. It will be two days from 9-1pm. Not sure on the dates yet. The time (9-1) was perfect because you can only stare at a computer so long.

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Wednesday Thursday Friday: Metalsmithing Class at the same school 

Peninsula School of Art Fish Creek Wisconsin Door County

What a great great great great time 🙂 I now feel have three new good friends. Thank you Joan, Kate and Terri. This is why I teach…. wonderful human connect with these three women. All of us coming from different backgrounds and all of us completely in tune to what we are there to learn: new ways to create with metal. It was one of the best classes I have ever taught. Super energy!

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Kate’s piece without the stone in it…. Hey teacher don’t eat in the studio 🙂 Yes, those are my grapes….

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Ocean Jasper… The back plate of this sterling silver was put through a rolling mill with dried corn husks ~ thanks Joan for bringing them and telling us how great it looks.

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This is Terri… She was in my class last year and was really ready to advance beyond where she felt she was stuck. She wanted to make a birch tree like piece… Well, she did and it was fantastic!

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Her necklace without the stone… it swings on the branch 😀 Love it Love it Love it. I would buy this from her if she would let me.

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This is a terrible photo but it shows Joans piece…. I wish the pic was better because it was stunning. The rough agate matched these pearls… The pearl components in the chain are double sided so the same cupped square is on the reverse side with a pearl in it. We made these component from scratch and yes, even the pearls have a little tiny post in them. There are five different tiny little soldering jobs to do in one component of that single pearl chain link. (You are awesome Joan and you did it!) When her chain moves around the pearls in the chain are never flipped the wrong way. It’s beautiful all the time. Oh, and Joan hand made every single jump ring in that chain, soldered them all, and hammered them all. By  Friday she was ready to not make any more chains but she knows now that she can…   🙂

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Pic off the the far left was just a piece that was just started in the last bit of class time…. we did not want to leave it out.

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A lot of students want to visit my studio. Well, I hate to tell you it’s just not that impressive. This is it. It’s like galley kitchen… narrow with countertop/benches on each side. I have another room with my larger equipment in it in the concrete walled part of our basement (rolling mill, hydraulic press, buffing motor, large anvil ~ this space is even less impressive, downright ugly.) This basement room has windows and it’s where I spend most of my time. But it’s not anything fancy and it’s not what I would call a ‘studio.’ It’s just the space that I have… I try to make it as inspiring as I can with goofy signs… etc…. I would love an inspiring studio separate from my house. I have often joked about this with my husband and tossed the idea around about building some kind of ‘workshop.’ After last winter I cannot image doing that. I cannot imagine heating and shoveling another building. It’s just not realistic in my head…  I would love to have the space to have another person work or students work or clients stop in… but I just don’t think it’s worth the winter time work with maintaining another building. If I had elves it would be doable….

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I have two torching station setups ~ with three torches connected to two propane/oxygen setups. One of them on the bench on the far left will be replaced with my new welder when I finally get it. I have plans to travel to Chicago to a jeweler who is going to spend a day teaching me how to use one. I plan to do that as soon as I can… I haven’t got a date yet. I wish it was today… I’m ready. If you are ready to purchase a torch, my setup is my favorite and I think I have used a lot of different torches and gas sources. I use the Little Smith Torch and the Smith Versa Torch. I have them setup on propane/oxygen tanks with a flashback arrestors and Y-Adaptors. The Little Smith Torch is tiny and very precise especially for gold work. The Versa Torch is my 90% of the time torch but mostly because my jewelry is so big…. That torch melts things fast… heavy ring shank… takes seconds to solder. When I use the schools’ Acetylene without oxygen torches I feel like it takes all day to solder something large, even with the largest tip on the torch. However, it’s just what I am use to. I know a lot of jewelers and they use either or, and seem to love whatever they are use to. It comes down to ‘heat’ … have you got it?? Is your flame hot enough? At home Terri is using a ‘CopperHead Torch’ with propane only. She stated in class there are several things she just cannot do because there is not enough fire power. Same with several hand held torches (butane or propane)… They are cheap and handy but often not versatile enough to do any job.

Terri is taking the picture so she’s not in the photo… Kate, Joan and myself 🙂 at Peninsula School of Art in the Metals Studio working/playing the day away….

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Next show is this Saturday Sept 27th at The Settlements Shops in Fish Creek Door County Wisconsin. It is 10-5 Saturday only… It’s small (only 20 artists) but nice and the Door Peninsula is starting to turn gorgeous with Fall colors.

Huge show after that is October 11th & 12th also in Door County. I will be at the Fine Line Gallery in Ephraim. The show is called ‘Townline Art Fair’ and has been running for almost 50 years. It’s a beautiful show. The Peninsula has several festivals that weekend. It is the busiest weekend of the year for tourism there…. Pumpkin Patch Festival draws 70,000 visitors if it’s good weather. Last year I sold out several items I always have in stock and it’s was raining. I won’t be able to believe the crowd it if it’s good weather…. New post soon with upcoming work. Have a great weekend!


You Will Find Refuge Necklace….

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To date: this necklace is probably one of the most beautiful I have ever made. Crazy Lace Agate stone, sterling and citrine gemstones…..Oone of a kind. Titled: ‘You Will Find Refuge’

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/185013097/crazy-lace-agate-stone-sterling-silver?

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Extremely sharp contrast in style and taste… this is a custom order skull pendant for a man. Skull is carved labradorite stone. It’s a very wicked looking piece of jewelry.

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Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/185014813/labradorite-skull-sterling-silver?

The class schedule is now available at Peninsula School of Art. I will be teaching two classes in September there. One class is business related: ‘How To Launch Your Etsy Shop‘ It will focus on the ins and outs of Etsy, setting up your shop and navigating the e-commerce so you have the best chance of being noticed among the masses. Class is Sept 15 & 16, Monday and Tuesday. Link: http://www.peninsulaschoolofart.org/le1402.html

Sept 17,18,19th will be a stone setting class. During this class we can really do almost anything. The school is completely equipped with all the tools we need to make rings, pendants, fold forming, etc… From the very basics to the most advanced please come and learn and experiment with new techniques. I will have an assistant so if you need concentrated help with just one area there will be time for that or if you have never made a thing in your life and are terrified of a torch ~ no worries ~ just come to class. Link to class: http://www.peninsulaschoolofart.org/je1415.html

I can’t sign you up…here is the catalog and links to the school; http://www.peninsulaschoolofart.org

Will have an accurate schedule of summer events now posted on this blog on the events page so hope to see some of you this summer. One of the galleries I sell in, The Flying Pig, opened officially last weekend and is open on weekends now until middle of May when they will be open daily. I will be dropping of jewelry there this coming Friday. They usually re-do the layout of their gallery over winter while they are closed. I am excited to see it. I know there is an 18 foot fish moving sculpture hanging from their ceiling… yes, it swims, really…. I saw that the day they had scaffolding up to install it. What an amazing piece! Got to go and get to work! It’s Monday morning, much to do.


Class, Run, Weekend, Tools….

Busy week last week… Taught class at Peninsula School of Art in Fish Creek Wisconsin. Thank you to Rick and Maryann as they drive along way and were back for a second year in a row. I hope they return next year. It’s been amazing to see what they have done in a year. Beautiful creative work ~ both of them! And thank you to Silversmith Sylvia Youell who stopped in to show us her work. She graduated from UW Madison a number of years before I was born and is still making amazing pieces of jewelry. She has a class at Peninsula School of Art first week in December and also during the summer months. Students work done in class…..

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I have had a problem for years teaching class…. Students do not want to buy torches, regulators and tanks. It’s an expensive investment. Hand held butane torches I find frustrating: too small, run out of fuel, not hot enough, not adjustable enough, short life expectancy of the tool itself… (There are a lot of people that do all their work with a hand held butane torch. My hat is off to them as I do not have the patience for that kind of torch.)

Yesterday I got this in the mail from Euro Tool…. I did not have it in time for class but that is fine since I have been waiting for this for a few years. A torch that is simple, reasonably priced, interchangeable tips, easy fuel source: propane refillable tank (your gas grill tank) or propane disposable tank (little bottle of propane for a coleman camping stove). THANK YOU EuroTool!!!! I tried it out yesterday. I was impressed. It’s not as hot as propane and oxygen which I use but it gets the job done easily, quickly and the three torch heads are perfect! Four feet of hose and the torch handle swivels, very comfortable for hours of use. Yippeeee!!!!!!!!

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/163607558/copperhead-torch-propane-jewelry-torch?ref=shop_home_active

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Other tools I tried out….

Power Max Full Flush Side Cutter and Euro Tool Rotary Flexible Shaft: The power max full flush side cutter I have had for a while. It is my favorite pliers. It has its’ own hanger next to my hand at my bench I use it so much. Effortless cutting with minimal distortion of  12 and 10 Gauge material ~ Nice.

The flex shaft is good quality at a reasonable price. If you are currently using a dremel this will be a nice upgrade.

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Another amazing looking bug…. Walking Stick that was on my porch yesterday. What is it with the weird bug sightings? This bug was about 3 1/2 inches long and would have matched a pine tree/needles perfectly.

Side note:  ran the half marathon in Appleton Wisconsin on Sunday. It is a great course and had great cool fall weather to run in (7am 44 degrees). My sister in law ran that distance for the first time ~ 13.1 miles. Great job Jen! She has been training faithfully for at least six months. The energy at a race is so positive it’s addictive. I hope she wants to run another one.

Got to go! I have lots on my bench in the making. Show this Saturday in Fish Creek Wisconsin at The Settlement Shops ~ one day only 10-5…..

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Teaching A Class and Taking A Class… New News….

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Just a new spin on this ring… been playing with several stones and configurations. I made a multiple stone one as well with several different gemstones on it. Fun and colorful!

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/161744052/turquoise-flaming-heart-ring-sterling

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I’m teaching a class Sept 19, 20, 21st in Door Co. Wisconsin at Peninsula School of Art. The class is almost full. If you want to join us here is the info. It should be a great time. I have some returning students and we are making a different project than the photo. If you have some experience you are usually free to go your own way. Can’t wait!

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I’m taking a class Nov 1, 2, 3 in Green Bay Wisconsin at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. The class is with Gerry Lewy a Master Diamond Setter from Toronto Canada. It is on diamond setting, of course. He just recently made the world’s most expensive poker chip. Wow! Diamond encrusted, amazing. If you can take this class please send me your email and I will get you the information. The class number is not available yet but it will be soon. The class will cost approximately $500 which includes a kit of tools and supplies that cost $285. It’s worth traveling to take the class. There is no home Green Bay Packers Game that weekend so getting a hotel room should be easy and reasonably priced. Again let me know if you are interested: email: joy@joykruse.com

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Not yet done… working on this men’s custom order hinged bracelet. It’s massive and heavy. He is going to love it. It’s not finished but almost.

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This is pencil lead. It was tip to me from another metalsmith. It does not burn and holds small parts like tubing in place for soldering. Thanks metalsmith person of unknown origin – can’t remember who taught me that!

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On a personal note decided to run the Fox Cities Half Marathon. Don’t cry for me. I am use to this. It’s my favorite distance and run it often, 13.1 miles, is like heaven for me. I have run 7 full marathons. On the 6th one I said, ‘Never again.’ I ran another one with a good friend and had a blast. Now, hmmm…. should I run an 8th one??? What do you think??? It would be in May sometime around the 20th. I love running in the winter so I am giving this serious consideration. A marathon though is something that is a great undertaking. It is not the race itself. It’s the training. You have to put in the time, the miles, like stacking bales of hay in the barn. In summer you stack the mow full then in winter you hope you have enough, taking them out one by one when you need them. Every mile is a bale of hay. On race day you start throwing them down out of the haymow ~ Are you going to have enough? Are you going to run short? Or do you have plenty left over? There is no faking it.

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Professional grade garden: Garden Envy! It’s my neighbors garden and she has it just perfect this year. Wow! Amazing job and she is an amazing cook besides.

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Huge Cross with heavy chain links. Made the links completely by hand even pouring the ingot, rolling and drawing the wire. One of my favorite processes!

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/161744536/sterling-hammered-cross-bracelet-heavy

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Last but not least I have been try to make more post earrings. It has been a frequent request. These are 10mm Freshwater Pearls, sterling silver, hinged post earrings. The swirl with the pearl swings back and forth. Nice movement, Classic style but a little different.

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/161756333/pearl-hinged-post-earrings-sterling-wild

Last but not least Art Show in Fish Creek Door County September 28th 10-5. It’s only one day at the Settlement Shops right before you head into Fish Creek. Stop and say Hi if you can. It is a beautiful time of year to be in Door County. The best time of year as the fall colors will be changing then. Hope to see you soon at class or at a show!


Class at Peninsula School of Art

Taught class on Thurs, Friday and Saturday in beautiful Fish Creek WI at The Peninsula School of Art. What a great class. Everyone in class had torch experience so it was pretty sweet to see them just plow ahead and make several things. Thank you Lissa, Rick, and Mary for the pure pleasure of teaching! Here are some of their creations.

 

 

 

 

Great class… again thanks to the three of you. It was a pleasure. I feel you can all now go and do just about anything. You owned that studio by Saturday Afternoon!


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