Not only that - she also came up with this gorgeous idea of having one artist providing 5 samples to 5 testers, and the AW Test group was born. I had the pleasure and opportunity to be part of the first group and we were gifted wire samples from Melinda herself.
The wires were different gauges and materials (copper and brass) - and a surprise: a new flat aluminum wire. When I received the package and I felt the softness of the aluminum wire I knew immediately what I want to try first - and out came the embossing machine :)
Since the wire has a small width (3mm and 5mm) - the embossing worked well, but it wasn't very prominent. After a few failed trials of giving it some sort of a patina or colour, one of the other testers pronounced the magic words 'alcohol inks'. Many trips to many hobby and art stores and I ended up at Michaels and the proud owner of some (expensive) bottles of alcohol inks.
Now we were talking!
Melinda included 12 ga copper wire in perfect bangle-size length. At first I thought I would make some bangles, then another idea crept in and... after some texturing, colouring, wire wrapping and forming I ended up with this:
- it almost took the colour off the aluminum area
- it beautifully patina-ed (making up words) the copper
I was almost crying thinking I destroyed the aluminum area - when I realized it's not destroyed, just beautifully 'aged' somehow in an interesting way. And the patina on the copper is absolutely delicious!
At this point I wanted to try one more thing - so a bit of extra hammering and a bit of colour gave me the almost-ready components. A bit of wire wrapping was needed and I used the almost black wire - which is absolutely fabulous! I messaged to Melinda immediately asking her what is that wire: it is the Parawire vintage bronze (20 ga). It is so easy to handle, so nice on hands, I couldn't believe. Now I understand how people can create some of those beautiful wire wraps I admire: with this soft wire the intricacies will surely be possible!
Aren't they cute?!
This is the story of my testings - I still have lots of the wire and it will be used well :)
Thank you, Melinda, for the opportunity. Thank you to the March testing group members, it was fun to work along and chat and exchange ideas!
Ali of Northwoods Creative Studio
Alicia of All Pretty Things <= you're here
Kristing of YaY! Jewelry
Kumi of Malie Kai Design
Linda of Lindy's Designs
And last, but surely not least: please make sure to visit the AW digital magazine - for amazing designs, vendors, and latest news on Artisan Whimsy:
Artisan Whimsy April 2013 Bead Chat Magazine