Sunday, April 13, 2014

New Bracelets

A few years ago, I became aware of fold forming, a technique of metal manipulation that involves folding, annealing, opening and hammering a piece of metal.
The development of fold forming is credited to Charles Lewton-Brain whose work is beautifully illustrated in his book, 'Foldforming'.
I decided I had to learn about this technique and bought Lewton-Brain's book, read any article that I could find, looked up YouTube videos and took a workshop with Wendy Edsall-Kerwin.
In Wendy's workshop, I made a couple of foldformed cuffs, and thought that I had found
'my thing'...the thing that I could explore and take small ownership of in my own way.
None of the shops where I sell had anything like the foldformed cuffs that I began to make, so I got busy.
I worked primarily in brass because I like the color that developed with multiple annealings.
With each cuff, I learned more about how to move the metal and how to sometimes let the metal take me in a different direction than I had planned.
I began delivering my cuffs to the shops and then a disappointing thing happened....
nothing. wasn't a total nothing.
The cuffs did get customer's attention because they do kind of call for people to pick them up and touch them.
But they weren't selling.
I came to appreciate that with wide cuffs like the ones I made, they either fit perfectly or they don't fit at all.
There is no comfortable middle ground.
I feel proud of the work that I was doing and even though I wanted to continue to make foldformed cuffs, it didn't make sense.
Like anyone trying to make some kind of living with their artwork or craft, if it doesn't sell, it doesn't pay the bills.
I don't have the luxury of pursuing an artistic outlet just because it satisfies my soul.
It also has to at least try to satisfy my bank account.
I started to take a different approach with my bracelets, thinking that if they were somewhat fluid, they would be a more comfortable fit for more people.
I began combining etched and milled metals, linking segments together with heavy gauge jump rings.
I like to have a central focus like a resin set image or a bezel set stone.
Like the foldformed cuffs, these bracelets have been getting customer's attention.
And....oh happy day....some of those customers are buying.
The bottom two bracelets will be available at
on Saturday, May 3.


  1. You know, I can sympathize completely with your disappointment that those beautiful cuffs aren't selling. Strangely, fold formed cuffs don't sell for me, either, yet I get compliments galore on the ones I wear - imagine that! Love your squished cuff. You'll find the right outlet and audience for those, I am absolutely sure. No quit.

  2. Lynn- Same experience with me...I get many compliments on the cuffs. Maybe you have the same challenge of finding the right customers who fit the cuffs. Time is too precious for me to keep making something that I'm finding difficult to sell.