I have always had an interest in lots of different art and crafts, particularly drawing, painting, sculpting, and I especially enjoy working with wire and metals, which led me to making jewellery items, tiaras and fascinators. As my skills developed I discovered other materials to work with, and then came across Metal Clay.
After months of research, I found someone who was demonstrating Metal Clay at a Chester Bead Fair, and was amazed at the versatility of the material, and was instantly ”hooked” , and went out and purchased some silver clay that same day, and I have worked with it ever since.
I have attended various courses on how to use this medium, and I am now a qualified senior instructor in Art Clay, having gained levels 1 and 2 teaching certificates.
Metal Clay is a product invented in Japan.
Platinum, Gold, Silver and base metals such as Copper can all be made into Metal Clays, and I work mostly with Silver clay.
Re-cycled micro particles of silvers are suspended in a non-toxic binder and water, resulting in clay that can then be shaped, molded and textured into an item of jewellery. This is then fired either in a kiln, on a gas hob, or by blow torch. The high temperature burns away the binder and water and fuses the silver particles together, resulting in an article of fine silver.
I found that I really enjoyed working with silver and taught myself some silver smithing techniques which have led me on to making jewellery using antique cutlery, mainly making coffee spoons into rings.
More recently I have discovered an interest in wet felting and needle felting.
My working background is in horticulture, and it is my love of plants and the natural world which provides me with my main sources of inspiration.