Friday, August 27, 2010

First Bezel

'Rings & Things' comes to my area twice a year with their travelling bead show, and I usually arrange my schedule so that I can get there to stock up on supplies. I made it to the recent show intending to only buy the sterling findings that I needed, but I was seduced by some of the beads.

I bought this strand of green amethyst which was quite expensive, but the stones are so completely lovely. I've already made one pair of earrings with two of the stones and am plotting out some necklace ideas.

I also saw a few strands of beautiful Australian painted jasper beads. I've never used beads like this but found them to be so uniquely fabulous. I bought one strand with no idea of how I would put them to use.

Even though these stones are drilled to be used as beads, I thought I would use one for my first attempt at a bezel. I liked the idea of creating a bezel frame for the stone to best highlight the intricate patterning created by the minerals. I considered this to be an experiment and used some scrap copper that I had milled with lace. I also used this copper to test stamping with my dismantled typewriter striker keys. A strip of fine sterling silver was used for the bezel. I'm happy with the 'fit' that I was able to make for the stone.

Because both sides of these stones are interesting, I chose to cut out a window in the copper. I don't think that the floral patterning of the milled lace is especially compatible with the jasper, but being a test piece, I can live with it.

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