Tuesday, February 15, 2011


We had a fun class tonight.

I had a new student tonight. Very textile-y. Good job, Betty!

Cindi got to sit in tonight.

Alice's texture seems very tropical to me.

Pam's texture reminded me of an alien map of the galaxy.

Here's the texture that I made in class.

I had a class tonight at Bead Haven after quite a break. It was nice to get back to it. Tonight was acid etching. Acid etching is one of my favorite things to do. The etchant that I use is ferric chloride. Ferric chloride is a salt that becomes acidic when dissolved in water. It has a lot of advantages over more dangerous etchants such as nitric acid. It doesn't produce dangerous fumes and it isn't absorbed through the skin (don't get it on your clothes, though as it never comes out!). The main disadvantage of ferric chloride is that it doesn't work on silver. Given the price these days, I save my silver for other projects anyway. Ferric chloride will etch nickel (which makes a decent substitute for silver, in color at least), copper, brass and bronze.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Acid etched texture plates from an earlier class.

Heart-shaped bezels, filled with hand painted papers and resin.

I have 2 classes coming up at Bead Haven this month. I haven't had any classes for a while, so I'm really looking forward to these. The first class on Tuesday, February 15th is an acid etching class. In this class you have the choice of making an etched sheet of copper for texturing metal clay (the textured sheet can also be cut up and fabricated into jewelry if you're not the metal clay type) or copper and brass blanks in many different shapes for making into earrings and pendants. We'll spend the first part of the class working out designs and transferring them onto our metal. While the pieces are in the etching solution there will be time to break out the hammers and learn some other texturing methods as well. After the pieces are etched we'll clean them up and you'll take them home the same night. This class is a really fun and safe introduction to acid etching.
The next class is on Tuesday February 22nd and is a fun resin class. Bead Haven has a variety of bezels, including the heart-shaped ones shown above to fill with your creations. I will have a large variety of papers and transparencies to embed in resin or you can bring something of your own too. I will also have copies of texts for you to hand paint and personalize like the heart pendants shown in the photo if you prefer.
Both classes will be a lot of fun, so please join me if you can. If you're interested in either class, give Bead Haven a call at 319-247-2323.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


This wasn't even one of the drifts!

I couldn't feel my legs!

My front yard.

The snow was as deep as my snow blower.

Those little boxwood shrubs poking out of the snow are about 2 feet tall.

Well, there's been a lot going on lately, but I thought it was time to get back to the blog because I really missed it. I hope some of you are still checking on it from time to time, or I'll be pretty lonely here! Like I said there's a lot going on these days, some good and some not so good, but there you go.
For days the weather man has been predicting a storm of epic proportions for Southeast Iowa. I generally think meteorologists are great at predicting thunderstorms, but not so great at wintry weather. That being said, I really didn't pay much attention to the predictions. Wow, was I wrong. I've lived in Iowa City for 30 years (yikes!) and There has never been a snow storm like this one here. I actually don't mind snow, in fact I'm one of those weird people who actually like it, but this is crazy! I spent 3 hours outside today with my friend Mr. Snow Blower. It was the best workout I've had in months. It really was pretty too.