Tag Archives: progress photo

A Quilt and a Copper Cuff – Story of Handmade

Here’s an excerpt from my December 2013 newsletter, with a bunch of progress photos from making copper cuffs. A story of warmth for a chill December day!
Last night I went in search of my other blanket – the quilt made by my grandmother. My hands smoothed the pinks and purples and greens, snippets from garments she had made. I felt the love as I drifted off to sleep, finding the comfort in something handmade that I will own forever.

This morning, as I slipped on the copper cuff I wear daily, I thought again about the handmade. It’s a simple thing, this cuff. Seeing it on my wrist every day brings comfort. It is pretty, it feels good, I made it, it will last forever. I can have as many as I care to make, but I only wear this one almost every day.
Two blankets. One cuff. Sometimes it’s not about more. It’s just about having something beautifully meaningful. This Christmas season, I encourage handmade, meaningful things in small quantities topped with warmth, and human connection.
Happy Holidays to you and yours.
Here’s how these cuffs are made, skipping a bunch of steps!
Cut a bunch of copper, then file the edges and sand it all over.
Anneal the copper, then hammer it in overlapping hammer blows.

 

 

Tip the edges of the metal over a steel block held in a vice

Anneal the copper, and bend it around a bracelet mandrel
Handmade Tipped Edge Copper Cuff Bracelet by Nancy Lee

Progress Photos of Handmade Jewelry for "Tea Ceremony" Line of Work

It’s getting close! Here are some progress photos I’ve snapped over the past two days while creating my new line of work to honor all things tea. The new work will be part of the “Tea Ceremony” collection. A brief but fun look. The whole process is getting me excited for my trip to Arrowmont this weekend to assist instructor John Cogswell in his “Delightful, Diminutive Teapots” week-long intensive workshop. Nervous and excited. Enjoy!

Progress Photo – Sterling and Moonstone “Tea Ceremony” Necklace

Progress Nearly Complete! – “Tea Leaves” Earrings – Sterling Silver

Willa’s Journey – Part One

In my newsletter last month, I alluded to a story about a piece called “Willa’s Journey.” Here  it is. I hope you are ready for this story – it’s rather lengthy.
First, the back-story: Several years ago, I read a novel by Willa Cather called “Death Comes for the Archbishop.” a Life-altering reading experience. Her ability to rivet me to the story was compelling, so I read up on her writing style. She was known to sacrifice a robust draft of a story to the greater good, in other words, she would take another story that could have been a novel on its own, and give it over to the novel at hand. (I recall the back-story to the bigger novel and still wonder what she would have made of the back-story – it was that good.)

Willa Cather

This concept of sacrificing one story for the greater story was foreign to me. When translated to my benchwork, I have always been conservative with materials and minimal in my designs, telling my story in a straightforward way with as few elements as possible. Every element I put into my visual stories is weighed with a great deal of consideration for the design, not to mention the cost. I will often design in my sketchbook works with many pieces and parts. Then when at the bench, strip everything out that clutters up the visual bones of the piece. Add to that the fact that I have many precious little elements at my disposal – really good little stories, if you will, and I weigh them as too precious to sacrifice to the bigger story, because maybe someday I will have created the perfect piece for this element, and I won’t have the element any more. Or because if I add too many elements, it will then be too expensive. Or if I add too many elements, it will just be clutter.
Next? The Journey. Read more in tomorrow’s post.

Willa’s Journey, progress photo by Nancy Lee
In my newsletter last month, I alluded to a story about a piece called “Willa’s Journey.” Here it is. I hope you are ready for this story – it’s rather lengthy.
First, the back-story: Several years ago, I read a novel by Willa Cather called “Death Comes for the Archbishop.” a Life-altering reading experience. Her ability to rivet me to the story was compelling, so I read up on her writing style. She was known to sacrifice a robust draft of a story to the greater good, in other words, she would take another story that could have been a novel on its own, and give it over to the novel at hand. (I recall the back-story to the bigger novel and still wonder what she would have made of the back-story – it was that good.)
This concept of sacrificing one story for the greater story was foreign to me. When translated to my benchwork, I have always been conservative with materials and minimal in my designs, telling my story in a straightforward way with as few element
In my newsletter last month, I alluded to a story about a piece called “Willa’s Journey.” Here  it is. I hope you are ready for this story – it’s rather lengthy. In fact, this is the first of three installments…
First, the back-story: Several years ago, I read a novel by Willa Cather called “Death Comes for the Archbishop.” a Life-altering reading experience. Her ability to rivet me to the story was compelling, so I read up on her writing style. She was known to sacrifice a robust draft of a story to the greater good, in other words, she would take another story that could have been a novel on its own, and give it over to the novel at hand. (I recall the back-story to the bigger novel and still wonder what she would have made of the back-story – it was that good.)
This concept of sacrificing one story for the greater story was foreign to me. When translated to my benchwork, I have always been conservative with materials and minimal in my designs, telling my story in a straightforward way with as few elements as possible. Every element I put into my visual stories is weighed with a great deal of consideration for the design, not to mention the cost. I will often design in my sketchbook works with many pieces and parts. Then when at the bench, strip everything out that clutters up the visual bones of the piece. Add to that the fact that I have many precious little elements at my disposal – really good little stories, if you will, and I weigh them as too precious to sacrifice to the bigger story, because maybe someday I will have created the perfect piece for this element, and I won’t have the element any more. Or because if I add too many elements, it will then be too expensive. Or if I add too many elements, it will just be clutter. Next? The Journey.In my newsletter last month, I alluded to a story about a piece called “Willa’s Journey.” Here  it is. I hope you are ready for this story – it’s rather lengthy.
First, the back-story: Several years ago, I read a novel by Willa Cather called “Death Comes for the Archbishop.” a Life-altering reading experience. Her ability to rivet me to the story was compelling, so I read up on her writing style. She was known to sacrifice a robust draft of a story to the greater good, in other words, she would take another story that could have been a novel on its own, and give it over to the novel at hand. (I recall the back-story to the bigger novel and still wonder what she would have made of the back-story – it was that good.)
This concept of sacrificing one story for the greater story was foreign to me. When translated to my benchwork, I have always been conservative with materials and minimal in my designs, telling my story in a straightforward way with as few elements as possible. Every element I put into my visual stories is weighed with a great deal of consideration for the design, not to mention the cost. I will often design in my sketchbook works with many pieces and parts. Then when at the bench, strip everything out that clutters up the visual bones of the piece. Add to that the fact that I have many precious little elements at my disposal – really good little stories, if you will, and I weigh them as too precious to sacrifice to the bigger story, because maybe someday I will have created the perfect piece for this element, and I won’t have the element any more. Or because if I add too many elements, it will then be too expensive. Or if I add too many elements, it will just be clutter. Next? The Journey.s as possible. Every element I put into my visual stories is weighed with a great deal of consideration for the design, not to mention the cost. I will often design in my sketchbook works with many pieces and parts. Then when at the bench, strip everything out that clutters up the visual bones of the piece. Add to that the fact that I have many precious little elements at my disposal – really good little stories, if you will, and I weigh them as too precious to sacrifice to the bigger story, because maybe someday I will have created the perfect piece for this element, and I won’t have the element any more. Or because if I add too many elements, it will then be too expensive. Or if I add too many elements, it will just be clutter. Next? The Journey.
Verified by MonsterInsights