Showing posts with label Mike Buettner. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mike Buettner. Show all posts

Melting, Making and Creating

Although the hubby and I have been completely entrenched this year in the company we own and operate together, we have each taken moments to 'play' and create a few things.


Although I prefer to play with pearls, gemstones and beads,

Mike likes melting pewter and making pendants and components for me to mix into my designs.

He researches the makers marks of the pieces he purchases before melting them; photographing them and logging their story; making sure the pieces he's 're-cycling' are lead and nickel free.

There's some pieces he finds that are just too old, too unique or have too much history to melt down.
Those have a special place of honor in his office.

Hand-pouring pewter is the 'old-way' of creating pewter pieces. It's not as precise as other forms of casting pieces can be. It takes practice and lots of patience. 
There's lots of 'do-overs' and 're-melts'.
Getting into the zone and pouring just the right amount of the hot, molten pewter at the exact moment is an art form in itself. 
We won't mention (very loudly) that he didn't start out with any traditional (or modern) melting, finishing supplies or casting items.

Hey, having a beer helps! :-)
Nope. That wouldn't be Mike.
It basically started out like this:
Mike"Hey, I think I'm going to melt some pewter and see what happens. Doesn't that sound fun?"
Me"How ya gonna do that? Do you have the right equipment?"
Mike: "I don't know. I got a torch. That'll work, right?"
Me"Um, I guess so. Are you melting it just to watch it melt or are you going to make it into something?"
Mike: "Yep, probably."
Me: "Oh Lord!  Please don't burn the house down!"
Mike: "I'll be in the garage."
Me: "Please move my car first!" "Seriously,...."
So, after months (probably a good year or so) of playing with his torch and watching it melt and hammering it into funky shapes, having it splatter up onto his clothes and his work glasses (thank God he was wearing some eye protection!!), burning his hands, dripping it onto the carpet beneath the work bench and ruining several antique ladles (and other things), he's finally getting his technique down; working with actual 'tools' (so to speak) and products used for such things as melting, casting and creating pewter pieces.

I'm partial to pieces that are 'old world'  and rustic looking so Mike's style of pouring pewter and the way he gets the pieces to come out is right up my alley and fits nicely with many of the designs and ideas I have tucked away in my brain.

My 'Stash' of components from my hubby!

He often remarks, "Man. You sucked me right into your world! It's addicting!"

Yep! Gotta love it, don't ya?!!

"Skull-e-ten" Key, and 'Lunar" Ankh (Lunar = like the surface of the moon)
Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Melting, Making and Creating!

Skulls, Crosses, Peace Signs and Pearls! Oh My!!

I was able to sit and create for a bit this weekend and it was pure BLISS!!
Having fun w/photo edits of my productive and 'knotty' weekend bliss!
Working with the hubby in our business we own and run together on a full time basis has kept me away from creating as much as I'd like this year, but it has given me the chance to step back, slow down and take stock of a few things, jewelry business wise, and that's been really nice.
A while back my friend, Kim, requested one of my leather knotted necklaces with some rather large ringed pearls she knew I had in my possession. 
I finally finished it and shipped it off to her, but of course I spaced out getting a photo.
I know,...seriously. No photo. Not even a snapshot with my phone for goodness sakes!
So, being the sweetheart (and wonderful designer, instructor and fellow GIA Alumni!) that she is, she took some shots for me so I'd have one.
Pearl Necklace - Michelle Buettner, Button Clasp - Green Girl Studios
Photo Credit - Kim Hatzold
Thank you so much my friend! 
On another note, my hubby has been having a ton of fun in the garage melting and pouring pewter for a new line of crosses, skulls and peace signs.
Original Wax Mold - Stephen Elliott, Pewter Skull - Mike Buettner
Here's a couple of pieces that, if I get the chance next weekend, I will be 'Pearlizing'.
Skulls, Crosses and Pearls! Oh, My!
Yep, my word.
'Pearlizing' - Adding pearls to a design so they can be considered 'pearlized'.
(another one of my words!).  
If it's not 'Pearlized'
it's not worth wearin'! 
This is my new slogan. Like it?
Just kidding,...designs don't have to have pearls in them to be worth wearing (gasp!!), but it does make them (IMHO) more appealing.  (Wink, Wink!)
Hand Knotted Freshwater Cultured Pearls, Hand Poured Pewter Coptic Cross
and Handcrafted Sterling Silver Hook Clasp (MiShel Designs)
So now that Spring has sprung, (hopefully it's not still snowing where you are!!) what is it that you're enjoying?
Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Nuggets, Antique Buffalo Nickel Button,
and Hand Poured Pewter Peace Sign. (MiShel Designs)
Until Next Time,
Peace, Love and Pearls, Baby!! 
(And Skulls, Crosses and Peace Signs!)