My Father’s Watchmaking Bench



I was so inspired by the class that I took with Richard and Jane Salley last week that I finally decided to set up my Dad’s old watchmaking bench to make jewelry. My brother gave it to me ten years ago. It’s solid oak and I don’t know where my Father found it, but he refinished it and replaced missing parts. I will make a few modifications, like removing the strip of molding from the front so I can clamp on my bench pin. Or mounting a piece of wood on top with a curve cut for the bench pin and room underneath for storage. It has a sweeps drawer so it’s perfect for sawing.

Here are some modifications I have made so far

A magnetic strip to hold files


and a rack for hammers that I made with wood strips, metal brackets, and a few nuts and bolts.


I am still processing the class and will write more about it next week.

Puerto Vallerta

This week I am posting from lovely Hacienda Mosaica located in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. I’m taking a class with Richard and Jane Salley called Magic in Mexico.



It’s beautiful here as you can see from the pictures.




This is is our classroom studio.  It’s fun to work outside in the open air.  I”ll be back next week with some new skills.  For now, it’s off to the Wednesday Night Art Walk.

Sculpture For Your Ears

A few years ago, I wrote a post about an intriguing  sculpture in the courtyard of Jefferson University a few blocks from my house called Ars Medendi.  


At the time I wrote the post, there was a dearth of information on the Internet about the Ars Medeni cylinder or the screen, which is a shame.  As I was  reading the Philadelphia Inquirer this weekend,   I was delighted t come upon a short mention  of  music composed specifically for these sculptures. by King Britt  called Copper Speaks to Flesh, which you can download here.


As King Britt explains  on his web site

“So I was commissioned by Bowerbird of Philadelphia to create a sonic re-interpretation of the Ars Medendi sculpture by Jim Sanborn. The sculpture is comprised of many medical terms cut into copper. The sound art can be listened thru your phone by QR Code while looking at it in person or download here. I wanted to incorporate the words in my piece, so I got Ursula Rucker to say sequences of words from the piece. I then processed them through pedals and such. I also asked two people that were standing around the piece, what it meant to them and put that at the end of my piece as a perfect ending….”


Read my post on the  Philadelphia Percent for Art program,  here.


I hope you enjoy this marriage of music and metal.

What I Made This Year

Some of the holiday gifts I made this year

imageFused glass cabochons  strung on buna with friction clasp closures.


imageI attached pendant/pin findings on the back so the cabs can be removed from the cord and worn as brooches

    wpid-img_20141228_164559blog_wm.jpg A polymer bangle bracelet


The beads are strung on galvanized steel wire

image with a sterling silver accent bead


I made a necklace for Leigh who is married to Max  and the Mother of two little boys I made two sterling silver rings for the pendant which I textured and then soldered together.    I stamped the names of Leigh, Max and the boys onto the dangles that I cut from a sheet of sterling and filed into shape.  Then I made holes in them and domed them in a swage block for a more interesting shape.


 The beads are everyone’s birthstones: opal, garnet and sapphire crystals.  I used the stones and Balinese silver beads to make wrapped loop dangles which are hung  in front of the name dangles and attached to the pendant with soldered jump rings.  I made the clasp from  sterling wire and attached it to a ready-made chain.  It fastens in the front.


Plumpton didn’t get a present because every day is Cats’ Day.  But I made Ginger Cat cookies ( instead of gingerbread men) in his honor.