Learning to set fancy cut stones!

purple amethyst emerald cut gemstone ring
Purple Amethyst Emerald Cut Gemstone Set In Sterling Silver Ring Band

Learning to make a an emerald cut bezel setting is a new revelation! I see why they call it a "fancy" cut. It sure is a fancy thing if you can make one of these I would say. It really isn't that easy and takes good practice. After taking a few lessons with my instructor Jim Dailing..I have now learned to set stones in a flush setting and tapered heavy bezel settings for the round stones and cushion cut stones. And oh yes..the emerald cut stone..which has 8 cut sides.

fire citrine gemstone cushion cut ringCushion Cut Fire Citrine Gemstone in a tapered tube bezel setting

My all time favorite setting is tapered bezels which has always been so intricately hard to understand and calculate. You see, I am not a math kind of girl..nope hate it. Now it all comes back to me as to why my teacher was trying to teach me all of those formulas in geometery. I now wish I paid attention! I purchased a cushion cut tapered bezel stamp from Italy..NOT CHEAP! I better like using this thing I would say! But, here is one of my pieces from the bezel punch. I used 18g fine silver to make this tapered cushion cut bezel with the punch..and then I hand cut a seat for the stone to sit. FUN!

aquamarine gemstone in a gold bezel ring
Romantic Aquamrine set in 14 solid gold bezel and set on a beautiful flower patterned ring band

Okay so I bit the bullet. I am and have decided that I am going to be offering solid gold pieces. I have been working with gold filled and this has helped me gain confidence in finally feeling like I know what I am doing with gold. I love the look of this metal, but we all know it is at its all time highest and truly very expensive for a small time jeweler like me. But, I really feel that I need to grow in this area. I have had 5 rose cut diamonds setting here waiting for a home. Of course they need that gold home..ha ha! I am going to take some photos of them and post them here on the blog.

Anyone interested in a rose cut diamond ring? Let me know..would be thrilled to make one!

Have a great day everyone and you can see all of my work here in my shop at HelenesDreams.com.

Reorganizing My Shop

" The whole shop - reorganized?"

I have to admit..its been nice lately having some time for a bit of "spring" clean-up. I won't lie...we are having a bit of spring weather here in Central Oregon while the East Coast gets dumped on were unusually warm right now. We were told it was going to be a really really "cold " winter according to the Farmer's Almanac...but I guess it just passed us right on by! What do ya know? So..well, I can't complain, I will be glad to take some warm weather. Were at 54 degrees right now and sunny...sweet! When your working in a cold garage..cold weather is NO fun!

" My solid oak workbench. I had this made by a carpenter needing work here in town for a super price."

Last year working in my shop was soooooo cold. I have contemplated in splitting some light industrial space with other metal smiths in town, but I really don't need more expenses to incur. This "was" my husband's shop originally, but he has NOW let me take it over. I have slowly been hiding his tools and guy "stuff" in those cupboards you see to the right! He seriously is a sweetheart to give up his shop for my jewelry..hugs to my Chuck!

"My old workbench, now my soldering station. Bought this for $75 bucks on craigslist. Its actually an old bankers desk. Works great for storage..and very roomy!"

So,I cleaned up the garage this last month to make it more of my own space..its still rugged but it is more roomy and pleasant now. During the summer its not so bad working in the shop, with the garage door open its actually very nice, ..but during winters it can get so cold and I don't feel like working with blue fingers and a runny cold nose! I have to use several electrical heaters to warm this place up and when it's snuggy warm, I actually like this place now!

I also have added another working table in the middle of the room and it sure is nice. You can't go wrong with more room to work on..believe me. I was lucky to find this table below on craigslist for only $25 bucks..wow!

"My center work table..gives me more room to spread out. $25 bucks on craigslist! Wow!"

It's funny because I was just checking out how immaculate someone else's shop was and I about died! I could never be that organized! Some of you are probably wondering how funny I am thinking my shop is all neat right now..but well, you should have seen this place before. Let's not go there! I did not even take pictures..don't need memories of my messy shop! But, I am finding a bit of peace with this spot of my own..thanks God!

turquoise gemstone sterling silver earrings"Just a little something I had fun making this morning! I will list them later on today."

turquoise earrings"A pair of rustic turquoise sterling silver earrings, handcrafted by HelenesDreams."

Thanks for reading my friends..have a good weekend.. Cheers!

Have fun with the Superbowl Thing! I will try, but personally would rather make jewelry!