Monday, 18 June 2012

Our latest jewellery makes....

Our latest jewellery makes....

There's one benefit to this 'British summer', the weather means that we can use the time to get creative and make some new jewellery creations! Here are some of our creations made by the Kernowcraft Rocks and Gems team!
Marquise Labradorite ring
Marquise Labradorite ring This beautiful labradorite stone was one of our limited offer cabochons so it was a complete one off, our buyer Jo set this ring for herself using sterling silver wire and bezel strip. We love the gorgeous shape of the ring! If you want a special stone, check out our cabochon section where we have plenty of one off stones to choose from!

Sterling Silver Hummingbird 
Sterling Silver Hummingbird This sterling silver hummingbird necklace was made by our marketing assistant Katie by piercing out the design in sterling silver sheet.
Peruvian Amazonite Earrings
Peruvian Amazonite Earrings We fell in love with these new gorgeous peruvian amazonite cabochons as soon as we saw them and had to get creating! Here we used an epoxy glue to secure these cabcohons in to the milled edge earring settings, a 5 minute make that is so striking!

Labradorite Briolette Earrings
Labradorite Briolette Earrings These gorgeous briolette earrings were made by Kernowcraft team member Lowenna, she combined pyrite, rainbow moonstone and labradorite briolette beads with a light sterling silver chain to create funky earring drops!
Green Amethyst Briolette Earrings
Green Amethyst Briolette Earrings These delicate green amethyst briolette earrings were made by wire wrapping a loop out of silver plated wire and then using a thinner wire wire wrapping a weaved pattern around the loops for a design inspired by weaved branches.

Golden Sheen Obsidian Earrings
Golden Sheen Obsidian Earrings We absolutely love the gorgeous sheen these faceted top golden sheen obsidian cabochons have, so we decided to combine them with some beautiufl labradorite with a golden tone to complement them. We used epoxy glue to set these into milled edge link and pendant settings to create these simple but beautiful earrings.

Labradorite Bracelet
Labradorite Bracelet This labradorite bracelet was so easy to make! We used a milled edge link setting to glue in a labradorite faceted top cabochon with epoxy glue. We then added this to some chain and a clasp using jump rings.

Biwa Pearl Earrings
Biwa Pearl Earrings These Biwa pearl earrings are so classic and elegant, perfect for wedding jewellery! We made them by wire wrapping the biwa pearls using gold plated wire.

Pink Opal Chandelier Neckace
Pink Opal Chandelier Neckace These pink opal beads are just so special! Here we've wire wrapped the beads with sterling silver wire and added them in between lengths of chain. We've then attached this gorgeous flower chandelier component to the chain and dangled another pink opal from it. Great for a vintage design!

Vintage Style Pearl Necklace
Vintage Style Pearl Necklace Another gorgeous vintage inspired design, here we've strung a silver plated flower chandelier component onto a thread with pearls and wire wrapped a pearl to hang in the centre of the component.

Green Amber Bracelet
Green Amber Bracelet We love these new green amber cabochons so we thought we'd give you a simple idea to make with them. Here we've used a milled edge pendant setting to glue in the cabochon and have used a jump ring to attach it one of our bracelet chains as a cute and simple charm.
Ocean Jasper Earrrings
Ocean Jasper Earrrings These beautiful ocean jasper earrings really let the stone do the talking! We simply used a little epoxy glue to secure the stones onto our earstuds with flat plates.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

How to create beautiful patina on metal

How to create beautiful patina on metal

If you want to add a new dimension to your metal designs, then creating a patina on metal is the thing for you. Not only can you create some truly beautiful effects but you can have great fun experimenting too! There are so many options for creating patina on metal that it's often hard to know where to start, so we thought we'd give you some of our ideas and inspiration.
Liver of sulphur experimentA Kernowcraft favourite...Liver of Sulphur!

Liver of sulphur experiment Our favourite product for creating patina on metal is liver of sulphur. This fantastic product allows you to create beautiful effects on copper, brass, silver and some plated metals. All you need to do to get started is add a few drops to a cup of warm water. There are then two options, either paint the mixture on to the specific area or as we did here just dip your item in the mixture. The effects you can create vary from beautiful, vibrant pinks and blues to a dark antique effect. It all depends on the strength of your solution and how long you leave your metal in the mixture. If you're just starting out why not have a go gradually building up a patina, that way you'll be able to see all the possibilities. Liver of sulphur is especially popular with our customers who want to create a dark antique effect on items, this darkening of the metal really helps to highlight textures and shapes in your designs. You can even polish the effect off certain areas and leave on others to further create a feeling of texture.
Liver of sulphur experiment It's worth remembering that using liver of sulphur, despite the scary name, really isn't very scary. It's best to wear gloves when dipping your items just to be on the safe side but apart from the eggy smell this liquid is really safe, and you don't have to worry about ruining your piece as the effects you create can be polished off if you don't like them!
Liver of sulphur is only £3.00 for a bottle, as you only use a few drops at a time that bottle will last you for many experiments!

Already tried liver of sulphur? Then take the next step!

LOS Before & After
Liver of sulphur experiment If you've already had a go using liver of sulphur, we're sure you'll find creating patina as addictive as we did and you'll be wanting to find out more. We were completely inspired by our latest DVD 'Patina Basics' by Tim McCreight. This brilliant DVD really takes away the mysteries behind creating patina, using really simple recipes to create absolutely stunning patterns on metal. Tim uses household items that you really wouldn't expect to create gorgeous patina, whether he's using mustard (yes, mustard!), a sharpie pen or household ammonia he really takes the scariness out of creating patina on metal. We couldn't help but get our mustard out when we got home and start creating all sorts of patterns! The great thing we found about the DVD is that you are able to see how exactly things are mixed, it really brings the method to life, we loved being able to see exactly what was done as it made it so easy to follow, and there are even printable PDF's of the recipes used for you to print out and reference when you're at your work bench.
Patina Basics by Tim McCreight is £27.95.

The 'all knowing' book!
Accent gold necklace There are just so many possibilites with patina that we think you could try for years and years and still discover new methods all the time! However if you want a reference book to give you some beautiful inspiration on patina, texturing and other decorative effects then 'The Jewellers Directory of Decorative Finishes' is THE book to have. This fabulous book is filled with not only just brilliant patina ideas but other great ways to bring a new dimension to your work, from reticulation to granulation and using gold and silver foil. We constantly use this book as a reference in our workshop and it's always picked up by inspired customers in our shop. Take a look today and continue to grow your silversmiting skills!
3rd May 2012

Introducing our new range of cabochons!

Introducing our new range of cabochons!

gemstone cabochons
In February this year our lucky buying team travelled to far flung climbs in order to find some new and exciting stones for us to bring you, and they didn't return disappointed, bringing with them a huge new range of cabochons!
There was a real buzz in the office as our buying team returned with some beautiful new stones, after hearing lots of updates of their travels (and if we're honest, feeling a little jealous!) we couldn't wait to get our hands on the new gemstones and take a look for ourselves. Peeling back the layers of the parcels we were completely dazzled by the new range. As all of the stones were hand picked by our buying team, the quality of these new gemstone cabochons is just so beautiful, whether it be the cuts of the faceted top cabochons, the beautiful fire in the opals or the stunning patterns of our range of agates, our buying team ensured they chose the best quality stones, and at a reasonable price.

gemstone cabochonsIntroducing our new stock...
Our buying team obviously had a fantastic time choosing lots of cabochons to bring back, in fact there are so many to mention that we just couldn't tell you about them all, so we thought we'd pick our favourite ranges to tell you about and let you see the vast choice for yourself!
Faceted top cabochons...
H92 We've noticed a massive trend towards all things sparkly in the past few months, and let's face it who can resist a bit of sparkle! So our team have chosen a beautiful selection of faceted top cabochons that we have just fallen in love with. The great thing about faceted top cabochons is that you get all the sparkle of a faceted stone but without the difficulty of setting one. You can either make a bezel setting using some bezel strip or choose one of our ready made cabochon settings to pop your choice of stone in using a dab of glue and a gentle push of a bezel rocker. Our team went a little 'sparkle crazy' when buying these beautiful gemstone cabochons and so you can choose from faceted rose quartz, amethyst, carnelian,black onyx and many more! All of these beautiful stones are available in our faceted top cabochon section.
gemstone cabochonsStunning patterns...
We are often amazed at the way nature can create such beautiful patterns in stones, and have for a long time wanted to bring some of these amazingly patterned stones in to our range of cabochons. Our buying trip saw the team sourcing some stunning patterned stones including porcelain jasper, ocean jasper, peanut wood, crazy lace agate and botswana agate to name a few. The great thing about these stones is that each one is so individual so no two of your jewellery designs will be the same, you will be able to create a truly unique piece by incorporating the beautiful patterns of these stones!
H90Beautiful quality...
Here at Kernowcraft we pride ourselves in bringing you high quality stones and these new cabochons are sure not to disappoint with the majority of them being AA quality or above. Our new shapes and sizes of labradorite have to be our favourite quality labradorite with absolutely beautiful and vibrant blue flashes that are sure to grab your attention.
After a great deal of time checking our new arrivals and getting some lovely photographs to really show off the gorgeous stones, all our beautiful new stones are now available in the 'gemstone cabochons' section of our website.