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Here is My Blog, I hope you enjoy these snippets of information and insight into my work!

Here are some of my recent commissions requested by clients. These are a pair of handmade earrings9ct yellow gold earrings made with the clients own old gold jewellery. They are simple but stunning!

 

 

Here is another recent commission 9ct ruby ring, this time again using the clients old jewellery, a 9ct yellow gold ring set with a large ruby. The shank has carved detailing.

 

 

This is a very personal commission of an oval bangle made using the clients own silver-emerald-banglegemstones. The gemstones were removed from the clients old rings, the diamonds and emeralds are set on a sterling silver bangle.

 

 

All these are made from recycling old jewellery. With metal prices on the up again don’t cash in up-cycle instead and turn your old jewellery into something modern and contemporary!

 

Channel setting

Just to let you know that I have now got a new online shop! With a lot of hard work from my husband and

Garnet ring

Silver and gold ring with Garnet

myself we have managed to get it together. I have added some jewellery pieces and am proud to  have it up and running. I know the images my not be so fantastic but believe me the jewellery is gorgeous, even if I say so myself!

There is a featured section so I’ll be able to show off anything new that I’ve done. Items will change over time in this section. Then there are categories where my jewellery is listed by type. For each item click on the image and click again to get a full description of the item. Then simply add your item to the shopping cart. If you want to continue shopping click on the Shop Button at the top of the page. All sales go through PayPal and can be paid directly through PayPal or diverted to a card payment.

Silver dragonfly pendant

Dragonfly pendant

You’ll notice my new Countryside Collection is here!!! I’ll blog more about that another time, but it’s brand spanking new and it is fabulous. More characters and designs will be added to the collection, so keep an eye on the online shop to see what comes along. At the moment the collection includes dragonflies, hedgehogs, butterflies and hares.

So please check out my new online shop and let me know what you think! Feed back would be appreciated. For a visit click here. http://arkcontemporarydesigns.co.uk/index.php/shop/ Many thanks x

Wedding rings

The use of gold has been traced back to over 7000 years! The Romans used hydraulic mining methods to extract it and mined extensively in Britain, especially in Wales. Gold was so highly prized by the Egyptians that it was associated with the colour of the dazzling light of the sun and the solar deity Ra. Because it is a precious metal that does not tarnish it was also associated with eternal life so gold was used for royal coffins to help preserve the mortal remains for eternity.

All over the world gold is measured in parts or carats. Pure gold has 24 parts and in the UK gold is presented as 9ct, 18ct and 22ct, which are all made up of gold alloys; an alloy being a mixture of metal. 9ct gold has 9 parts gold and 15 parts of other metals. 18ct gold has 18 parts gold and 6 parts alloy. 22ct gold has, yep you got it, 22 parts gold and 2 parts alloy. Pure gold is a very soft and very malleable metal and it has to have metal alloys added in order to make it wearable as jewellery.

For hallmarking purposes 9ct gold needs to contain 375 parts of gold out of 1000 parts of gold alloy and is hence hallmarked as 375. 18ct gold has 750 parts gold and is hallmarked as 750 and 22ct gold has 916 parts.

Now we all know that pure gold is very yellow so by adding various metal alloys to gold manufacturers can alter the colour of gold too. White gold contains silver or palladium in order to give it’s white colour, and red or rose gold has increased amounts of copper.

So save all your old jewellery and keep your gold, it’s precious and valuable. Turn it into something new and modern and wear your gold!

old gold

Bits of old jewellery

handcrafted bangle

9ct gold and tormaline bangle

Silver tie pins

Happy New Year everyone! And it’s wedding fayre season! I’ll be taking part in the wedding fayre held at Leasowe Castle, Moreton, Wirral this coming weekend, Sunday 18th January 2015. It’s organised by Hannah from Red Event and it’s a lovely venue and great event!

At this wedding fayre I’ll be promoting my “Make your own wedding rings” workshops”. Couples can come along to my fully equipped workshops and literally make their own wedding rings in a day! Yep just a day. We have a pre-meet before the workshop date and discuss design, size and precious metal type. You don’t need any experience at all!!! Here are just some of the rings that have been made by couples in my workshop.

yellow gold rings

Handcrafted rings

9ct gold rings

Rose and white gold rings

Handcrafted wedding rings

Sterling silver rings

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Also at the wedding fayre I will be promoting my bespoke wedding jewellery service, whether that’s having me make your wedding rings for you or your wedding day jewellery. I have made engagement rings and wedding rings, tiara’s, hair pieces for the bride, tie pins for the groom and best man, pendants for the bridesmaids and necklaces for the mother of the bride. Here is a charming hair comb made with a clients old filigree brooch that belonged to her grandmother (something old with something new!). Also added some tiara images too
handcrafted comb

Sterling silver hair comb

handcrafted tiara

Sterling silver tiara

handcrtafted tiara

handcrafted sterling silver tiara

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Here are some examples of wedding jewellery made too.
white gold wedding rings

White gold and sapphire rings

large silver necklace

Silver amethyst neck piece

18ct white gold set

Sapphire and diamond wedding ring set

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So if you like what you see and you are getting married in the near future then you could always drop into the wedding fayre on Sunday or you can always drop me a line. Here is the brochure for further information. For further information about wedding jewellery please visit my page http://www.arkcontemporarydesigns.co.uk/index.php/weddings/ or you can visit my facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Angela-Ruth-Kennedy-Jeweller/261886650557186?ref=hl thanks x

Wedding fayre

Leasowe Castle Wedding Fayre

9ct yellow gold earrings

Well it’s the Winter Arts Market 2014 coming up very soon gearing up for everyone to buy some wonderful handcrafted gifts for Christmas. It takes place at St Georges Hall, Liverpool on Saturday 6th December and Sunday 7th December 10am to 5pm.

At the Winter Arts Market 2014 there will be over 200 artists and crafters selling their work, including me! I will be selling my range of jewellery including sterling silver bangles and bracelets.

Silver bangles

Silver hammered bangles

These bangles are highly polished with a hammered finish.

And there will be more unusual items this year including my mircofolded leaf pendant.

Sterling silver leaf

Microfolded silver leaf

This form of microfolding is made by corrugating the silver first and then shaping into a leaf design. I will have lots of other micro folded work at The Winter Arts Market 2014 too.

And the there is my gorgeous channel set work.

9ct yellow gold earrings

9ct Yellow gold

I have these 9ct yellow gold earrings and pendant set and I also have them in sterling silver too. I will have other yellow gold items including rings and bangles.

I’m so looking forward to this event in this beautiful venue. Last year was very busy and I’m sure this year will be no different! So pop into the Cockerell room, just off the main hall, and say hello! You can also come and chat about any repairs you may have or even talk about my group workshops and tuition days. See you there!

For more information please visit http://winterartsmarket.com/the-event-2/

Commission

Here is May 2014 Newsletter. If you want to subscribe to the newsletter then just go to the about me page and add your email address to the box provided.

Hi there!
Apologies for a late newsletter but I went on holiday! I’ve been touring Scotland and did over 1200 miles! Had an incredible time but back to work for me! Lots happening at the moment. Next week I’m off to Patchings Art and Craft Festival, just outside Nottingham. It runs from Thursday 5th to Sunday 8th June, if you’re going please pop in the craft marquee and have a chat!

The following weekend is the Wirral Open Studio Tour, 14th and 15th June. I, along with 44 other artists, will be opening my workshop to the general public to view my workshop, see how I make my jewellery and make a purchase or two. Please pop in there will be lots of home made cakes! Contact me for details or for more information go to http://www.wirralart.com/index.htm

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WOST

Wirral Open Studio Tour


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I have been very busy with wedding ring workshops, tuition and commission work. Here is a recent ring made in 18ct white gold and 9ct rose gold, set with 7 diamonds. All of this ring was made using the clients own gold and diamonds from old jewellery.

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Commission

Handmade Gold and Diamond Ring


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Wibke and Graham attended on of my ‘Make Your Own Wedding Rings’ workshops and have made two gorgeous very organic looking rings! Again from old jewellery. I have set 7 diamonds into the ring after they made them. Wibke and Graham get married on 13th June so I wish them every happiness! I will show the close ups of the rings next month.

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Wedding ring courses

Make your own wedding rings


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It was my mums birthday at the beginning of May so I made her a simple 9ct gold ring with Emerald, her birthstone, she was delighted!

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emerald ring

hand crafted ring


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Events
Patchings Art Festival – Thursday 5th June to Sunday 8th June 2014
Wirral Open Studio Tours – Sat and Sun 14th and 15th June 2014
The Big Art Show – Sat and Sun 19th and 20th July 2014 (Shrewsbury)
Leasowe Castle Wedding Fayre – Sunday 14th September
Cheshire Open Studios – September (date to be confirmed).

Silver Jewellery Workshops at The Potters Barn
These group workshops book up to 8 people at a time, come on your own, with a friend or a whole bunch of you! They are very fun and you make two pieces of silver jewellery to take home! The next round of workshops being held at The Potters Barn, Sandbach are:

Saturday 31st May 2014 1 day – Shape and Form
Sunday 13th July 2014 1 day – Exploring Textures
Saturday 13th September – Rings and Things

For further information about these workshops email Andy at the Potters Barn a.pollard@thepottersbarn.co.uk or phone 01270 884080 or visit http://www.thepottersbarn.f2s.com/. Workshops include use of all tools, a buffet lunch, information pack and all materials. For further details about the workshops visit my website, see the link below, or send me an email!

Personal Tuition
These workshops are fun and rewarding and you get a buffet lunch included too, homemade bread and home cooking, what more could you ask for? So come along to learn new or broaden your existing jewellery making skills or make specific gifts for yourself or a loved one. Please contact me on 01244 567012 or email angela@arkcontemporarydesigns.co.uk for more information.

Here is a ring made by Jane recently in a day.

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Made in a day

Personal tuition


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Don’t forget you can do one of my “Make Your Own Wedding Rings” workshop, more details on my website http://www.arkcontemporarydesigns.co.uk/index.php/weddings/

If you want to treat a loved one then why not buy a gift voucher! Contact me direct or buy through my online shop at http://www.arkcontemporarydesigns.co.uk/shop/

Social Media and the like!
I’m on Facebook so if you want to take a look then just click on the link below and like my page, up to 448 likes now! http://www.facebook.com/pages/Angela-Ruth-Kennedy/261886650557186

And Finally….
Don’t forget my Wirral Open Studio Weekend on the 14th and 15th June!!! Come and see my workshop, look for the blue and white windsock outside my house!

I hope you enjoyed my newsletter!

Read more →

Personal tribute to WW1

WW1 Centenary remembered. This a personal tribute to my Great Uncle who served in the army during WW1 and died for his country.

As a member of the Cheshire Artists Network I was asked to be part of a touring exhibition to commemorate the WW1 centenary. My thoughts turned immediately to my Great Uncle Albert Eardley Lloyd. In 2004 my eldest brother Kevan and my Dad discovered an old photograph in my Grandad’s biscuit tin (where all the old photo’s are kept!), they were so intrigued they just had to find out who he was. This is how the story goes….

Albert Eardley Lloyd

That first photograph

Albert enlisted in August 1914, right at the start of WW1. He joined the Cheshire Regiment, as a Private in the 8th Battalion. On the 20th August 1914 Albert was sent to Tidworth Training camp, Salisbury Plains for basic army training. In October he was moved to Chilseldon, Wiltshire for training in warfare, then onto Pirbright and Aldershot in February 1915 for even more training!

On 26th June 1915 Albert left for Egypt on the troopship HMS Ivernia from Avonmouth. After his initial taste of warefar he disembarked the Ivernia at Gallipoli 7th July 1915. After months of fighting in atrocious conditions, Albert was one of men saved as part of the mass evacuation of Gallipoli in early January 1916. On 30th January Albert was shipped to Egypt, to Port Said and served on the Suez Canal.

WW1 Private Lloyd

Albert in his army uniform

On the 15th February 1916 he then went on to Mesopotamia to fight the Ottoman Turks. It is here that Albert is promoted from Private to Lance Corporal to acting Corporal. Here the conditions were terrible. Blazing heat and terrible sandstorms made life very difficult. Dysentery and Cholera were rife and it is here that Albert died. On 31st July 1916 Albert was on the sick list and died the next day 1st August cause listed as ‘of disease’. Albert was buried at the Almara War Cemetery, in Almara al Kut, now Iraq. Albert was posthumously awarded 3 medals, The Victory medal, The British War Medal and The Star.

Albert’s mother Jessie always wore a locket holding a picture of Albert in his army uniform. On the other side of the locket was a picture of his cousin Thomas Lawton Lloyd, who also fought in WW1.

The locket

As my personal tribute to commemorate WW1 centenary and as part of the Cheshire Artists Network touring exhibition I decided to make contemporary lockets in memory of Albert Eardley and to recognise the love of family. Jessie always wore this locket and Albert’s image can still be seen on the photographs.

Parents to Albert

Albert’s Mum wearing the locket

I have kept my sterling silver lockets contemporary and modern, with an opening catch to place your photographs of your loved ones inside. I hope you like them!

silver locket

Contemporary silver locket

Throughout the making of my lockets and the making of this blog I have been very mindful of the work carried out by my both my Dad and my brother who researched Albert Eardley, Kevan even went on to write a book about him. I would therefore like to dedicate this blog to my late father and brother, Albert Sydney Lloyd and Kevan Albert Lloyd, who both bore Albert Eardley’s name. I love and miss you both x

The locket

Dad and Kev with the original locket!

Further information about the Cheshire Artists Network and it’s WW1 centenary exhibition can be found here http://c-a-n.co.uk/news/article/great_news_

handcrafted wedding rings

Make your own wedding rings workshops. These fantastic workshops allow you and your partner to make your wedding rings in just one day. In my fully equipped workshop you and your partner will be guided through the whole process from metal to ring with lots of fun along the way. I have developed my ‘Make your own wedding rings’ workshops so that anyone can make their own rings, yes complete novices!

Make your own wedding rings

Fully equipped workshop

On a pre-meet before the workshop we will have discussed and agreed your wedding ring designs and the type of precious metal being used. On the day you’ll be shown the specialist tools you’ll be using and we’ll plan how we are making the rings based on your chosen design.

Wedding ring workshop

Starting to make a wedding ring

After a practice run you’ll begin! You’ll be guided on sizing the rings, making them to the right width and thickness and shaping them around any other rings, especially engagement rings! You’ll use techniques such as sawing, filing and soldering. These are the first steps to form your rings.

wedding rings

Soldering a wedding ring

Once the rings are formed you’ll hammer and shape your ring. At this point you’ll check you have the sizing correct! Once the sizes are correct then we continue on with making the rings look perfect! We will continue to follow your specific designs.

Wedding ring workshop

Filing a ring

Once all the filing has been completed and the designs are all perfect we will give the rings a final polish. For those wanting a high shine you’ll use both a pendant drill and motorised polisher for a super shine! Now your rings are finished!

Making a wedding ring

Polishing a wedding ring

After the ‘Make your own wedding rings’ workshop is over I will send your wedding rings to the Birmingham Assay Office for full hallmarking. You’ll be given a CD with all the photo’s taken on the day so that you’ll have something to show you friends and family in the years to come! So why not book yourselves a ‘Make your own wedding rings’ workshop today x

Corrugated cuff

Jewellers Tools – Part 2
The next jewellers tool we are going to look at is the micro folder. This ingenious device allows metal to be folded and from there to create corrugated jewellery.

Corrugator

Micro folding machine

The device is clamped into a vice to make it stable. The two top knobs are turned to 0 to calibrate the two corrugated steel rollers. The two rollers can be opened and closed by turning the two knobs. Once calibrated the rollers can be opened to a fixed setting metal can be rolled through to produce the corrugated effect. The metal needs to be softened before it is rolled through the device so that a sharp corrugated effect is made. Then the metal can be cut and shaped to make very bespoke corrugated jewellery. Here are a gorgeous pair of earrings to show the effect.
Corrugated earrings

Micro folded silver earrings

All sorts of jewellery can be made from cuffs to earrings to rings. Different metal types can be used to make corrugated jewellery including copper, sterling silver and gold.

Rolling mill

Jewellers Tools – Part 1

OK so I have decided to show you some of my lovely tools that I use in my jewellery making workshop, but rather than bore you to death with every single tool I thought I would talk about one particular piece of equipment every so often. So this time it’s the turn of the rolling mill. As far as jewellers tools go you can’t go wrong with a rolling mill. Mine is made by Durston, a British company with an excellent reputation which has been running for years. A friend of mine has got a Durston rolling mill and has had it for over 30 years and its still going strong, they are certainly made to last!

The top of the mill has two round rollers, these are for rolling out sheet metal, making sheet thinner or can be used for embossing as shown below.

embossing

Leaf embossed silver


The bottom rollers, seen as a series of grooves and are used for making square wire. The grooves are largest on the left and gradually reduce in size toward the right. These are for turning round wire into square, rolling square wire thinner and can even turn a nugget of silver or gold into wire, as shown below.
recycled silver

Recycled silver


The left hand side of the rolling mill turns wire into D shaped wire, suitable for making rings. So there you have it one of my favourite jewellers tools! A very useful piece of equipment!