Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Ammonite fossils again, this time with dragons

You may remember my fascination with ammonite fossils, those amazing Fibonacci spirals aged from roughly 66 to 300,000 years (I hope I remember that correctly!)

Well, I've been making pendants and earrings with them, most recently in bronze-toned owl frames, but I had sold all my owl earrings and had no more ammonites of the right size and thinness to make more!  What to do?

Well, I'd thought about ammonites with dragons, and had some slightly smaller ammonites and dragon charms I thought might work, so here's what happened:

First I had to set up a supply tray, in this case a shoebox lid, with all the tools, equipment, and pieces I'd need.

And in a spot next to the storage drawers, my coffee in its beautiful cup, made by Joelene, who lives not far from us and whose etsy shop is  PotterybyJoelene .

Then I looked at the available ammonites, which happened to be heat-sealed in clear plastic, picked a few that looked possible, and held my dragon charms up to check the fit. 

Ah, but those dragon charms have already been altered to accept the ammonites: here's what had to happen first.

bX-wnrswiFirst, the dragons in their original form.
Notice that I'm now using a smaller and less cluttered work tray, which I can even set on the supply tray to keep everything close at hand.

Next, cutting the interior portion of the tails.  I'm not sure whether you can see that this takes 4 cuts, and that they're not flimsy joins.  The one-winged dragon in the pic is what happens if I hold the piece the wrong way while snipping.

 Once I have 2 open pendants, I file the sharp edges of the metal with jewelry files and sometimes a diamond dust nail file or even an emery board, both so that they won't catch your hair and so that there's enough flat back to allow a solid join. 

Currently I'm using a superglue plus sometimes Aleene's Glass and Metal glue and/or Beacon's Quick Grip.

And here they are: front and back as they're lined up and glued,


and finally, the finished earrings.

I'm pleased with these, and considering more possibilities.  I think I have one pair of tiny ammonite slices that may fit in a mermaid's tail.  And maybe a vintage monkey or scarab with enough of the right kind of space. Stay tuned! 

1 comment:

  1. Aargh!I've spelled Jolene's name wrong & edit function doesn't seem to work.
    It's www.etsy.com/shop/PotteryByJolene