Friday, September 26, 2014

Farm Girl

I recently made wedding rings for a lovely couple, Gay and Ann. They had been together for many years and were now able to be legally “married”. As part of the process of deciding what the rings would look like I showed them all of the possibilities I have to offer. They chose their ring designs which were a pair of magical double Mobius strip bands (subject of another blog sometime!). One day Ann called me to ask if I could make a pendant for Gay as a wedding gift from her. She remembered a line of jewelry that I make from tiny pieces of driftwood from the north shore and asked if I could make a pendant from a piece of birch bark. We managed to find a piece from a small branch that had all the distinctive markings associated with that look and I made the pendant. 

Some time passed and I get another call from Ann asking about a pendant for herself. She was raised on a farm and has always thought of herself as a “farm girl”. Her parents no longer ran the farm but knew the people who did. She said there used to be a hundred year old hay barn on the farm that had fallen down. Some of the pieces had been saved. Ann asked if I could possibly use a piece of the old weathered barn wood as a background for the pendant. “Sure!”

Ann went to visit her parents. Her father is living with Alzheimer’s disease. As they were talking she asked her father if he could draw a picture of the old barn. He used to entertain her as a bored child in church with simple sketches. He proceeded to draw a very nice likeness of the old Illinois barn from memory. They then got a small board from the barn and brought it to me. 

I was able to make a reverse impression of the wood texture and from that make a positive in wax. I carved “farm girl” in one piece of the wax and carved a copy of the sketch of the barn in another piece as a pendant for Ann’s mother. We are all pretty happy with the result.

Cabin Sketch 

Wood piece from the Barn

reverse image of barn wood piece in silver

Wax casting
Finished pendant