Category Archives: Ginger Cats

Another Count the Ginges Competition

We’ve been so busy running workshops recently that I haven’t had chance to post so here is a quick competition and a promise that I will post again soon !

Every morning I take ChooChoo for a walk along our lane, it gives me chance to see how the seasons are changing day by day.  Each day we are joined by some of our cats – have a look at the photo and count the GINGES.

ginger cats

And click on this link www.lavidalerie.com/Give-Aways.html to see how to enter the draw to win one of my handmade silver Blown Away Wish Charms.

wish charm handmade silver

Ends midnight 1.9.15.

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Students Work, Ted Posing It Up & The La Vidalerie Race Car !

May and June have been very busy months for us with lots of workshops and wonderful students making lots of beautiful Jewellery using a variety of techniques from silversmithing to fold forming, riveting to glass fusing.

You can click each of the photos to go into the individual FaceBook albums to see more details photos and read a little more about them  – you’ll see some of the new project we have added to the workshops too.

Margaret – Wonderful Week of Jewellery May 2015
It was lovely to see Margaret again, this time she wanted to explore fold forming, silversmithing and riveting.  She made some really beautiful jewellery including earrings with half drilled pearls and a riveted copper and silver pendant.

Students work silversmithing riveting and fold forming

Lourika – Introduction to Silversmithing May 2015

silversmithing students work class

Lourika came for 2 days of silversmithing, she had been making a lot of beautiful stamped jewellery in aluminum (and fabulous personalised books) and wanted to expand her skills into silver. Look at all the wonderful things she made in just 2 days !

Paula – Silversmithing & More June 2015

Paula June 2015 Silversmithing (1)

Paula tried our new project incorporating seaglass into a pendant as well as pearl drilling to make this riveting pearl ring.

Sally – Silver & The Sea – June 2015

sea glass jewellery

Sally came back to explore more ways of bringing sea glass and the sea into her jewellery, her 3 days included silversmithing, wire work and stamping and our new project – a sea glass ring.

Larrissa – Silversmithing & Tube Setting – June 2015

silversmithing tube setting workshop

Larrissa wanted to learn how to solder and this 3 day workshop gave her chance to learn the basics along with an introduction to tube setting and stamping. Here are some of the beautiful pieces she made.

Sarah – Introduction to Silversmithing – June 2015

silversmithing workshop students work

Sarah came for Fold Forming but stayed for Riveting & Silversmithing 😉 3 wonderful days of interesting techniques and lovely jewellery – Here is what she made.

Gail & Ruth – Silversmithing, Stamping & Wire – June 2015

jewellery making holiday

Gail and Ruth had a couple of days of jewellery making as part of a holiday, in two short days we visited silversmithing, riveting and wire wrapping.

Barbara – Silversmithing & Riveting – June 2015

riveted jewellery students work amethyst

Barbara came to us for our Introduction to Silversmithing but found time for riveting and stamping too.

Iseult – Silversmithing & Tube Setting – June 2015

stone setting, tube setting workshop

Iseult wanted to come back to La Vidalerie to expand her silversmithing skills to include tube setting, here are the beautiful things she made in just 3 days !

Mary – Silver & Glass – June 2015

Glass fusing & silversmithing anticlastic ring

Mary joined us for a 3 day silversmithing workshop but wanted to include a taster session of glass fusing.  She made a beautiful (and difficult) textured anticlastic ring and it was her first experience of silversmithing.

Stephanie – 2 Day Introduction to Silversmithing – June 2015

Stephanie June 2015 Silversmithing (1)

Stephanie came to La Vidalerie for a 2 day Introduction to Silversmithing – Here are the lovely pieces she made.

Laura – Wonderful Week of Jewellery – June 2015

handmade cufflinks workshop

It was lovely to see Laura again for a fabulous week of jewellery making – She wanted to include silversmithing, etching & riveting. Here are the beautiful pieces of jewellery she made (including a gorgeous pair of etched copper and silver cufflinks).

Little Ted
Tim has had so many pictures to take of jewellery in the last couple of months it’s just as well he had Little Ted to help him 😉

Ginger Cats

La Vidalerie Race Car

Tim's New Car ;-)

Those of you who have met Tim might be aware of his interest in Scalextric racing – this is his work in progress, it will be branded with our logo and will eventually race against Steve’s Hotel Solomiac’s car 😉  Boys !

Count the Ginges and Enter The Draw !

May Competition – Count the Ginges !

This morning my walk with Choo Choo was joined by some of our ginger cats – how many can you see in this photo ? You can enter the draw to win one of my new Blown Away Wish Charms, handmade in sterling silver and perfect for a necklace or bracelet via my website – http://www.lavidalerie.com/Give-Aways.html

Ginger Cats - on a walk with Choo Choo

handmade silver wish charm competition

Good luck to everyone !  And if you can’t wait you can also order this charm and even have it personalised for you by clicking on the photo above.

Competition ends midnight Monday 4th May 2015.

Full Post This Time – Circles and Domes Earrings – Step by Step How they were made And Strange Foot Prints

Sorry everyone – my chubby fingers hit publish too soon – This is what you should have seen.

Winter is usually our quiet time as we cut back running workshops and after Christmas website business is slow so I have no excuse for not posting more here.

In an effort to make up for this here are the photos I took whilst making these earrings.

Handmade Silver Earrings - £25

Handmade Silver Earrings – £25

Circles cut from sterling silver sheet using my new disc cutter

Circles cut from sterling silver sheet using my new disc cutter

Step 2 - Circles and dots stamped on all the discs

Step 2 – Circles and dots stamped on all the discs

Step 3 - I annealed the discs to make them easier to dome

Step 3 – I annealed the discs to make them easier to dome

doming punch

Step 4 – I domed the discs using a steel doming block and punch

domed silver discs for earrings

All the discs have been domed now

Step 5 - I soldered ear wires onto the backs of the larger discs and balled the ends of short wires to connect the discs

Step 5 – I soldered ear wires onto the backs of the larger discs and balled the ends of short wires to connect the discs

step by step earrings

Step 6 – I used the balled wires to connect the two discs then balled the other end of the wire

Unexpected Step 7 !  After pickling and polishing I decided the earrings were too long with the balled links so I removed the links and added jump rings instead - Lovely light earrings with lots of movement !

Unexpected Step 7 ! After pickling and polishing I decided the earrings were too long with the balled links so I removed the links and added jump rings instead – Lovely light earrings with lots of movement !

Strange Foot Prints

Yesterday we had snow and my new routine of walking Choo Choo each morning means that I see more of our beautiful countryside than ever before.  Yesterday I came across these foot prints

Footprints3

Possibly bear 🙂

Footprints2

These look like cute little flowers

Footprints1

Not great detail but perfectly spaced

We have so may wild and domestic animals around us (but no bears honest 😉 so if anyone has their tracking badge from scouts and knows what left these tracks we’d love to know.  If I find some better prints to photo I’ll try etching them onto a ring.

Latest Jewellery Making Workshop Photos – January 2015 Silversmithing, Riveting, Etching & More – Isabella

Isabella joined us for a 3 day, one to one workshop. She is a sculptor creating beautiful small sculptures. She wanted to explore jewellery making techniques and especially soldering to use in her work. Although she was more interested in learning techniques than making items of jewellery you can see that she made a lot of beautiful pieces whilst she was with us.

Group

And Finally….

We have 2 more rescue kittens, one Tim found just before Christmas (an early Christmas present for me), she’s called Dora (after Dora the Explorer – not so clever as she is now living up to her name).  She was painfully thin when she arrived but is now a perfect, fat little kitten.

Ginger cats and Dora

Here she is being cleaned by Nibblet, one of our older rescue cats.

Then just before my Birthday Tim came home with Annie (from Anniversaire 😉 who is having a harder time getting well so fingers crossed I will have good news and photos of her soon.

Circles & Domes Earrings – Step by Step How they were made & Strange Foot Prints

Winter is usually our quiet time as we cut back running workshops and after Christmas website business is slow so I have no excuse for not posting more here.

In an effort to make up for this here are the photos I took whilst making these earrings.

Handmade Silver Earrings - £25

Handmade Silver Earrings – £25

Circles cut from sterling silver sheet using my new disc cutter

Circles cut from sterling silver sheet using my new disc cutter

Step 2 - Circles and dots stamped on all the discs

Step 2 – Circles and dots stamped on all the discs

Step 3 - I annealed the discs to make them easier to dome

Step 3 – I annealed the discs to make them easier to dome

doming punch

Step 4 – I domed the discs using a steel doming block and punch

domed silver discs for earrings

All the discs have been domed now

Step 5 - I soldered ear wires onto the backs of the larger discs and balled the ends of short wires to connect the discs

Step 5 – I soldered ear wires onto the backs of the larger discs and balled the ends of short wires to connect the discs

step by step earrings

Step 6 – I used the balled wires to connect the two discs then balled the other end of the wire

Unexpected Step 7 !  After pickling and polishing I decided the earrings were too long with the balled links so I removed the links and added jump rings instead - Lovely light earrings with lots of movement !

Unexpected Step 7 ! After pickling and polishing I decided the earrings were too long with the balled links so I removed the links and added jump rings instead – Lovely light earrings with lots of movement !

Strange Foot Prints

Yesterday we had snow and my new routine of walking Choo Choo each morning means that I see more of our beautiful countryside than ever before.  Yesterday I came across these foot prints

Footprints3

Possibly bear 🙂

Footprints2

These look like cute little flowers

Footprints1

Not great detail but perfectly spaced

We have so may wild and domestic animals around us (but no bears honest 😉 so if anyone has their tracking badge from scouts and knows what left these tracks we’d love to know.  If I find some better prints to photo I’ll try etching them onto a ring.

Latest Jewellery Making Workshop Photos – January 2015 Silversmithing, Riveting, Etching & More – Isabella

Isabella joined us for a 3 day, one to one workshop. She is a sculptor creating beautiful small sculptures. She wanted to explore jewellery making techniques and especially soldering to use in her work. Although she was more interested in learning techniques than making items of jewellery you can see that she made a lot of beautiful pieces whilst she was with us.

Group

And Finally….

We have 2 more rescue kittens, one Tim found just before Christmas (an early Christmas present for me), she’s called Dora (after Dora the Explorer – not so clever as she is now living up to her name).  She was painfully thin when she arrived but is now a perfect, fat little kitten.

Ginger cats and Dora

Here she is being cleaned by Nibblet, one of our older rescue cats.

Then just before my Birthday Tim came home with Annie (from Anniversaire 😉 who is having a harder time getting well so fingers crossed I will have good news and photos of her soon.

Day 21 Almost a Pair and a Pair of Ginges

What happens if you give two similar pairs of earrings to your photographer and don’t check the result…

Almost a Pair ;-)

Almost a Pair 😉

If you’ve been one of our students you’ll know that Tim takes wonderful photos of my jewellery for me (I tend to take quick and dirty ones at my bench), these were yesterday’s make – two pairs of fused silver Winter Branch Earrings, unfortunately I didn’t notice that he’d  mixed the pairs up – maybe that’s the way they are meant to be ?  I’ll put these on the website when I have photos of matching pairs 😉

A Pair of Ginges
I do try not to be a mad cat woman but seeing these two snuggled up together …
cats

That’s Katto on the left and Tom Tom on the right, possibly related as they were rescued from the same place but with a large gap between them, Tom Tom is top cat with funny teeth and Katto is a big lad with a broken tail which might be genetic- Well try as I might I DO sound like a mad cat woman !

May Challenge – I’m trying to make a piece of jewellery every day in May and post about it .

May Jewellery Making Challenge Day 6 & Off Up the Lane !

Yesterday I made this riveted dichroic glass pendant – Spicy Olive

Dichroic glass & silver pendant handmade Olive

Spicy Olive

I fused this cab a little while ago, it’s a mixture of clear olive and dichroic glass – very sparkly, yesterday I finally had time to make it into a pendant.  Most fused glass jewellery seems to be glued to commercial silver plated findings which seems such a shame when the glass is so beautiful it deserves something better.

In one of our workshops I teach students to make simple but really nice solid silver bails to take their fused glass and a while ago I started riveting my glass to make pendants and rings.  I made the bail for this pendant out of silver sheet, stamped for interest and drilled.  Drilling the glass is always the scary bit, it takes patience and you have to remember not to rush it.  I then riveted the glass and bail so that the glass can still move then put it on a simple rubber thong.

I haven’t put this piece on our website and it may still be available when you read this – On a thong for £18 plus £1.50 postage or on a silver chain for £24.50 including postage.

If you like this piece why not have a look at the workshops we run or contact me if you would like to arrange a glass fusing or riveting jewellery making break.

Off Up the Lane
When La Vidalerie was built (around 300 years ago) the entrance was a gateway from the lane into the enclosed courtyard with the front of the house overlooking the spectacular valley.  Many years later a new road was built behind the house and everything got turned around and the back of the house became the front.  This means that in front of the house there is a lovely overgrown lane, this is where I spent my afternoon – chasing Snowflake up and down the lane !  We have 6 cats, 5 of them ginger, rescue cats and Snowflake is one of these – gorgeous long hair and a personality that knows how beautiful he is.  All I have seen all afternoon is his magnificent long tail sticking straight up in the air and just out of reach – well I needed the excercise 😉