Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I'm it.

Margaux Lange tagged me yesterday, so here are 5 random facts about me:

1. At some point, every bowl I've made, which must be over 100 by now, has been worn on my head like a hat.

2. I like to make funny faces...alot...really, alot.

3. When I'm depressed or really struggling with disappointment, I read the Taoism chapter in Huston Smith's World Religions book. And this is why:

"The natural phenomenon that the Taoists saw as bearing the closest resemblance to Tao was water. They were struck by the way it would support objects and carry them effortlessly on
its tide. The Chinese characters for swimmer, deciphered, mean literally 'one who knows the
nature of water.' Similarly, one who understands the basic life force knows that it will sustain
one if one stops thrashing and flailing and trusts oneself to its support."

4. I didn't name either of my cats--I got them both as kittens but they're previous 'mothers' had given them such good names that I kept them. They're Junebug and Izzy. (Junebug's the darker one)

5. I'm afraid of falling down stairs. It's not a debilitating fear yet, but it does seem to get stronger as I get older.

I tag:
Arthur Hash
Kristen Kieffer
Haylie Bird Waring
Barbara Smith

the rules:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 5 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 5 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

New Double Bowl

Yaw Gallery just had a call for entries for a curated show they're doing at SOFA New York this sping. It's called "Not Just Any Bowl." I just finished this piece to submit. I'm not holding my breath or anything, but it would be so awesome to have a piece at SOFA...

Thursday, November 8, 2007


I'm a little behind the 8-ball on posting about this, but, if you haven't already, you should check out the current issue of Metalsmith Magazine.

In it, I co-wrote an article with my grad school pal Megan on the importance of the internet and blogging in getting exposure in the new world of craft.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

This week's installment

Here's the ornament for this week. I do so love the wedding ring quilt pattern--especially in metal, and especially with a little piercing.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I'm also in love with my husband.

N. and I were married on Friday, October 26, here. It was very nice.

Wall Art

New wall pockets--die formed and riveted. Would be very cute with dried flowers.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I'm in love!

If you know me, or have spent any time looking through my work, you may have noticed that I adore sock monkeys. My adoration began with monkeys, but really I adore any new thing made from an old sock. I think what I like is how unlikely the final result is, given the original object. Who would think to make a monkey from a sock? And why a monkey specifically? And why begin this practice during the Depression when socks were probably hard to come by?

I don't know. I have theories. But what I do know is that I like them, and this weekend I found this book, Sock and Glove, at Barnes and Noble and I am in love with this new generation of sock--and glove--creativity. The bottom image came from, and the top image was taken from a June 19 post on craft blog Wise Craft. Everything in the book is completely adorable and full instructions are included.

I didn't buy it, but I'll be dreaming about it for awhile now.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

It's important to have goals.

So, my goal is to publish pics of at least one different ornament per week until Christmas--we'll see how well that goes since I'm getting married next week....wait, no, I mean it...I'm going to do this...really...

Monday, October 22, 2007

Tis the Season... think about the Holidays. So I made this cute little tab-fit copper ornament. It is for sale now in my Etsy shop ( for $30--and there will be more to come. Also keep an eye out for upcoming copper wall pockets!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Repair Days

This weekend, N and I drove down this scenic stretch of classic mid-western road to go to Repair Days at the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis, TN. It's a yearly fundraiser organized by the Metals Museum where the public brings their broken metal stuff (stuff is a kind and generous term...) and some of the countries best metalsmiths (generally alumni from SIU-Carbondale) volunteer to fix it for $30 a pop.
It's a very 'old-school' metalsmithing kind of experience, with people giving blacksmithing demos, and lots of nightly drinking.
Overall, it was a good time and I'm glad we went. We only attended for the day on Saturday, but next year, we will have to hang around and do some work. By far the coolest event of the day was the iron pour--pictured above. People carved into sand molds and the Museum cast them. So, yes, that's a big bucket of molten iron, and I'm just feet away--oh, the excitement!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Allstars

This upcoming spring, during the 2008 SNAG conference, I will be participating in a curated show called Legacy and Lineage. Gail Brown, the curator, wants only one piece per artist, and so she asked me to assemble a group of my toothbrushes that uses brushes from all three pieces (from my thesis show at Kent State). This, I did. I like to call them the "allstar" set, as it represents my favorite brushes from my thesis work. Enjoy.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Gearing Up

N. and I are busily preparing for this weekends SIMS conference. Above is an image of a piece by my undergrad prof., Sarah Perkins, a metalsmith and enameler who will be demo-ing at the conference, along with other nationally known metalsmiths and blacksmiths.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Obsession of the week.

Periodically, (fairly often, actually) I decide my life is lacking in some way. And I decide that something--generally a very specific thing, is what I am missing, and this thing, if I had it, would make my life complete. This week, that item is a French rolling pin.
I don't really bake, and when I do bake, it's not something that needs rolling because I don't have the counter space, but I feel certain that if I could have a lovely (preferably handmade) French rolling pin, like this one I found on Berea College Crafts, then I would start to bake and everything would be perfect. Is it possible I'm investing too much emotion into an inanimate object?

I also want a ceramic mortar and pestle. Same reasons.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Alicia Bock

I know Ms. Bock has no shortage of web coverage, but I just love her images. They are so ethereal and simple. They are the kinds of images that picture the way I would like my life to look.

Studio shots

Yesterday it was suggested to me that I consider applying to I decided I will, but then I also decided that I needed better images of bowls I currently have since most of the bowls I have nice pics of are bowls that have been sold/traded away. So N. and I put up our adorable, homemade, photog set up (adorable because it's little--not because it's actually cute) and burned off about 25 lbs. of water weight under the oppressive heat of the 500 watt tungsten bulb. But I think it was worth it. I'll post more pics on my flickr and most of these bowls will also be on my esty.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Tantilizing Details.

I've been taking pics of some of my recent copper bowls for Etsy today. I always struggle with things like lighting and the best way to adequately describe the bowls with a picture--but I like to shoot details. Those are usually pretty fun.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Santa Clara del Cobre-Coppersmiths

This year at the Southern Illinois Metalsmith Society (SIMS) Conference, the Angel Family from Santa Clara del Cobre Mexico is doing demonstrations of their traditional copper-working skills. They brought with them almost 50 vessels, which they are selling at ridiculously cheap prices.
N. and I bought these two vessels for less than $300! I love the thick rims and the hammered texture, as well as the rich color. I think metal that has been worked this much (they start with thick sheets of copper, and hammer them thinner, then raise them up) has a warmth and depth that other kinds of metalwork doesn't have. We love them!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Goodbye Green Walls...

...I feel I hardly knew you.

In light of the recent events at the metals house, N and I have decided to move to a new studio--one that has just a single, solid wood door, as opposed to 2 hollow core doors, and 2 ground level windows. But I will miss our lime-green walls. The new studio is a drab white--but it is much bigger, which will be nice.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The worst yet.

Well, I thought the robbers only got copper that was waiting to be made into finished bowls, but I realized today that they got this one, my pierced bowl. Every dot that you see is a drilled hole. This was one of my favorites. Bastards.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Sock Monkey Love

Now that I'm behind what can only be called my "impenetrable shroud of doom" (to quote Sarah Vowell) after the theft of my copper, I need something to cheer me up. And what is cheerier than a sock monkey? So these are my sock monkeys. On the bottom is a sculpture I made in grad school. It is an actual sock monkey that has been bronzed. I call it Bronzed Sock Monkey (I know, I'm clever.) And on the top are the two friendly monkeys that adorn my bed. I like to call the big one Sally and the short one Mabel. They are antiques, though. I didn't make either of them. But someone did.

Monday, September 17, 2007


This vacant spot under my work table in my studio is where there USED to be a bucket of copper scrap and all my copper sheet for making bowls. Where is it now, you ask? It was stolen when someone broke into the graduate metals house at SIU-Carbondale on Sunday. I'm pissed.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Everyone needs a silver spoon

and I mean real silver, like these. All my flatware is forged from thick pieces of silver stock and I use mine everyday. Now I'm selling them on etsy.

I'm also particularly proud of my 'product shots' of this flatware. Taking good (or sort of good) images is very hard, but I feel like I'm learning.... steps (sigh...)

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Wedding Cups

I'm getting married in November, and while crystal glasses may be the tradition as far as wedding glasses go, we are both metalsmiths, so ours are silver! They are perfect for wine, though they get really cold in your hand with white wine.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Bowl Crazy!

Here are some new copper bowls I've been working on. I'm trying to simplify/modernize the patterns I'm using. These are pretty small and shallow. 'bout 4" in diameter, and no more than 1.5" tall. not bad so far, I think.
See more bowls on my flickr:

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

State Fair

this weekend, we went to the DuQuoin State Fair in Illinois. Generally fun, with lots of fried food, of course, but the best part was the car show.

new purse!

When I can't afford to buy something new, which is pretty often, my philosophy is to make something new, so this is my new purse--made mostly of linen, with a cotton lining and pearl button.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

More Etsy

I've also been making little hand-stitched notebooks lately using paint chips for the covers.


I officially have an Etsy site, and I've even put stuff on it!

above is a new charm necklace. Lately, in an effort to make salable work that I like, I've been working on little necklaces that use familiar/comforting phrases like "it's OK" and "why not."

of course, I will also sell my stand-by jewelry pieces like my ball rings, and copper bowls.