Sunday, February 27, 2011


I sometimes suffer from a version of 'writer's block'. I will have wonderful materials on my workbench but find that I just cannot move forward with a project because the ideas that I have don't yet seem worthy of the material. Pearls, faceted gemstones, hand forged copper problem. I can sit down and immediately get to work. It's when I find something truly unique or something that has sentimental value that I struggle with finding the inspiration that will leave me satisfied.

I recently found this bundle of wonderful utensils. These pieces are smaller that standard utensils, and I believe the metal is brass. The woman who sold them told me that the handles were ivory, but I knew that was not correct. My guess is that the material could be Bakelite. Whatever it is, I think it is lovely. The butterscotch color of the plastic and the warmth of the aged brass is a delicious combination. What am I going to do with these? I have ideas swirling about in my head, but I'm not yet ready to commit to one.

The one piece that really has me stymied is this remnant of a hair comb. This belonged to my mother and I have distinct memories of her wearing this when I was a child. With years of use, parts of the comb broke off making it non-functional but my mother could never bring herself to part with it. I'm so glad that she held onto this for years and eventually gave it to me a few years ago thinking that I might give it new life. The brass samaras are so wonderfully detailed and the amethyst colored pieces of glass are beautifully rich in color. I have tried to think of a project that would keep most of this piece intact but end up just putting it away for lack of ideas. It's too big and too curved to simply become a pendant. The pieces are separately riveted to the Bakelite base, and I can't yet bring myself to dismantle them.

My mother passed away in 2009, making some of her possessions all the more dear. She was quite beautiful and brought elegant style to all aspects of her life.
I want to get this project right.

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