For the past (almost) three years, I worked under the name of DRAADdesign. I originally chose this name because it reflected the items I made, as I usually worked with yarn (draad, in Dutch). The past year, though, I went back to metal smithing and started working mainly with copper. I love clean, simple jewelry in rose gold tones so that's what I create these days.
Additionally, I've been getting back to photography as well. It's always been a part of my life, but it sometimes took a back seat to other things. This year, I decided to take more time to actually get out there with my camera and hopefully get better at photography. I took up an extensive course at Het Statief as an extra push to do so and I love it. So, I'll be focusing on two main things on this website and blog: photography and jewelry.
All great changes, but it also means that the old name didn't really fit anymore. I needed a new one, so here it is: Jalvingh Capture & Create!
Last week, Sandra from Belgium approached me via Etsy to ask if I could make a mountain neclace in copper for her. I love custom orders like this, so I got busy right away. And this is the result! Sandra sent me a message yesterday saying she received the necklace and she's very happy with it. I might put this design in my shop permanently!
I'm always fascinated by how people turn simple, basic materials into the most amazing products. From a rough block of wood to a shiny smooth candle holder, from a blob of clay to a lovely plate...so I thought it would be fun to share my own process of working with copper sheets to turn them into jewelry!
I start, of course, with sketching a design on the copper plate. After that, it's time to get out my jeweler's saw and start cutting out the shapes.
Never mind the nail polish...decorated nails and making jewelry don't really go hand in hand, but I keep trying every now and then....
After that, I drill the tiny holes by hand. I actually have a Dremel, but found that drilling with my trusted old-fashioned hand drill works best.
This is the result so far! Doesn't look like much yet...
...so on to some sanding and polishing! This takes up the most time. I start by sanding the rough edges and the holes with tiny files and then polish the pieces with two kinds of sand paper. I usually don't go for super shiny, I prefer a matte finish.
After that, I hammer some pieces to create a hammered or otherwise textured effect. I treat the nearly-finished items with a non-toxic protective spray so the copper pieces won't tarnish or stain the skin. It also forms a light protective layer against scratching.
I let them dry for a couple of hours and check them a final time for scratches or other imperfections. They're good to go, so this is what we have so far!
The last step is attaching the delicate chains and other findings to turn them into actual necklaces, bracelets and earrings. Tada, done! Soon for sale in the DRAADdesign shop!
Winter isn't the most colorful season, especially here in the Netherlands. It's usually not very inspiring either when I go for a walk in the company of my camera. But, if you look closely, those winter hues are there! I was struck by the purple-ish color of the -what are they anyway? some sort of seed pod?- twigs below and decided to try and make a wintery series. Hopefully, in a month or so, I'll be able to create a spring series!
A few weeks ago, one of my colleagues came up to me and dragged me, acting all mysterious, to her room. "I'm organizing an office Christmas Challenge! Do you want to be part of the Christmas team?" Well, of course! The challenge means that everyone who wants to participate decorates their rooms as Christmassy as they want. Some people take this very seriously; there's been talk of a snow machine...
Although I'm not necessarily in it to win it, I don't want to be upstaged by all of my co-workers and be the only one who didn't decorate. So last weekend, I spent some hours creating simple Christmas decorations that hopefully still have a festive effect. Of course, Pinterest was my best friend.
Inspired by this post by the lovely ladies from A Beautiful Mess, I made a paper Christmas village:
...and a very easy (once you figure out where to cut) paper Christmas star. And last but no least, I made a few super easy and fast garlands of gold paper snowflakes. There, done! A very Christmassy office!