Sunday, October 25, 2009


SaWEEEEET!!! I was trying to sleep in on this early Sunday morning but I couldn't get them out of my mind, I had to get up and see how my pieces turned out. And they are beautiful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Of course I need to polish them up etc but they look pretty darned good as they are.

So even though my kiln went all wonky on me the pieces all survived beautifully. Let's hope the same is true next time and next time and ....................

Here's a pic of them straight from the kiln. I used a couple of the new molds I made from buttons a few days ago and they are gorgeous!!


Saturday, October 24, 2009

My first in home Bronze Firing

My somewhat long story of the first time I fire BronzClay at home in my own lovely little kiln.

For those of you who may not know, BronzClay has a much more complicated schedule than Silver clay or PMC. I took a Bronze class some months ago and I really like it, it suits my rustic and primitive style. But for some reason I haven't figured out I've been chicken to fire it at home. In the last year of jewelry making I do things I don't know how to do all the time, no problem, but this one stopped me in my tracks.

When I first learned to use Bronze, I couldn't fire it in the kiln I had. It was a manual kiln and would have been very difficult to babysit it all day using the Bronze firing schedule. I think there are many variations on this schedule but the one my instructor uses, the amazingly awesome and fun Patrik Kusek is 500 F per hour to 1550 F, hold for 2 hours. See why I didn't want to try this with a manual kiln OY!!!

So I purchased a programmable kiln quite some time ago, but I've never gotten the courage to use it. I took another Bronze and Copper class with Patrik and decided I had to face my fear and program my kiln and fire Bronze and now Copper at home.

The day after class I programmed it, and there it sat for about 3 weeks. Until today!!!!!! I made 3 fairly simple pairs of earrings, in case I ruin them all :). Loaded the container, put it in the kiln and turned it on. It shot up to 1,000 F right away, whaaaaat!!! So I turned if off and re-programmed it, and checked it several times, turned it back on and crossed my fingers.

Tic far so good, it's at 1,000 now for an hour.

Tic toc....10 minutes to go, then hopefully my kiln will go to 1550 for 2 hours and I'll have gotten through it.

Woohoo, in the home stretch. I won't be able to get in and see if this jewelry survived the firing until tomorrow.

So tune in tomorrow.