Friday, December 16, 2011

Want to Know Who Won Our Sea & Sky Challenge?

Who did you vote for? Did she win? Find out now! Here are the results:

By Popular Vote:
1) Night sky pendant -- Envydesignsjewelry with 13 votes
2) Sunset Necklace -- SparkleBeeDesigns with 9 votes
3) Amazonite Fine Silver Pendant -- Vaasvara with 5 votes

By Technical Vote:
1) Amazonite Fine Silver Pendant -- Vaasvara with 8 votes
2) Dream Cloud Silver Ring -- YorkAvenueStudio with 3 votes
2) Night sky pendant -- Envydesignsjewelry with 3 votes
2) Sunset Necklace -- SparkleBeeDesigns with 3 votes

Overall (based on percentage recalculation of the two above):
1) Night sky pendant -- Envydesignsjewelry
2) Amazonite Fine Silver Pendant -- Vaasvara
3) Sunset Necklace -- SparkleBeeDesigns

Congrats to Envydesignsjewelry! Who won by a slight advantage based on the popular vote! Vaasvara did a great job as a new challenger! Thank you for all who entered and voted. Don't forget we've a blog giveaway going on that you can enter and win:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

You are only limited by your imagination and skill level. - Janie

MCHs December featured metal clay artist is Janie of Life Art Designs.

Janie is a metal clay and polymer clay artist in one. Her special theme is nautical with lots of dolphins, sea turtles, palm trees and marine creatures. Her Etsy shop also offers a variety of polymer clay creations - buttons, canes, beads plus more. Following is a short interview with Janie. Enjoy!

Why did you pick the name Life Art Designs?
My work is mostly inspired by the marine life and nature found in my local environment. I live on a very small barrier Island in the Gulf of Mexico in the USA. There is much art to be found in the life around me. My favorite marine lives are the Dolphins. You can probably tell this by the different ones that I have in my Etsy shop.

What are the major challenges when creating metal clay jewelry?
Of course the first challenge is the design aspect of any piece and the process you go through to make it become “art”. Probably my biggest challenge though has to do with the nature of the clay itself. The fact that it dries out so fast can be an irritant especially if you are working on a complex piece.

What do you enjoy most about working in Metal Clay?
The design possibilities with metal clay are endless because it is clay and is malleable. You are only limited by your imagination and skill level.

What is your greatest ambition as a Metal Clay artist?
I would like to one day have my work published in Art Jewelry magazine. I have drooled over and been amazed at the work that is published in their magazine for years.

What is the biggest mistake you've ever made? What did you learn from it?
One time I had a custom order request for a very large pair of earrings of an exact design. After the client told me what she wanted, I explained to her that they would be quite heavy and very, very expensive. In fact, they were a $300 pair of earrings! She said she understood and wanted them anyway. I had her try one earring on before I finished them both. I figured if they were too heavy, I could still use the one as a pendant. After trying the one on, she was thrilled and wanted me to proceed. After the order was complete, the client was ecstatic with how they turned out and thanked me profusely. However, about a month later she contacted me. She said that although she loved the earrings, they were just too heavy to wear for any length of time. I ended up making a whole new pair of the same design only smaller and lighter. Now, she is really happy and wears them all the time. And I have two large pendants of the same design. What I learned from that is that sometimes you need to say no to a customer. Just because you can make something doesn’t mean you should.

Janie is giving away her Silver Fern Leaf Necklace to a lucky reader!. To enter the giveaway, here are the rules:

Every person is eligible to enter the blog giveaway with up to FOUR (4) entries. How can you get an entry? You can do any of the following and then let us know that by leaving a comment under this feature so we can keep track.

1. Follow our blog and post a comment here = 1 entry
2. Check out featured artist and post favorite piece under comment here = 1 entry
3. Heart featured artist’s shop and post a comment here = 1 entry
4. Follow featured artist on Facebook and post a comment here = 1 entry
5. Make a purchase and let us know here = 2 entries
6. Refer a friend and post a comment here = 1 entry
7. Tweet about the giveaway using key word metalclayheads and post a comment here = 1 entry
8. Share the Metal Clay Heads blog giveaway link on FB (Go to and click Share) and post a comment here = 1 entry
9. If you voted and commented on our last challenge = 1 entry

The giveaway deadline is January 15. We will announce the winner on January 16th. Good luck!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Sea and Sky Challenge

This is our last challenge of 2011 and boy-oh-boy, it is hard! I'm so thrilled to have so many fabulous entries from the MCHs. You rock! The challenge theme this time is Sea and Sky, with the required technical skill of using bezel or prong setting. Here are the beautiful entries:

Dream Cloud Silver Ring from YorkAvenueStudio

Fine silver Dream Cloud ring with genuine Citrine gemstone. I selected a delicate pale yellow Citrine gem because it was perfect to showcase the color and shine of this ring. I've antiqued the detail of the cloud to show darker contrast and used a rainbow patina for some blue hues on the prong setting. The Citrine gem reflects the blues which adds to the uniqueness of this design. More ...

Amazonite Fine Silver Pendant from Vaasvara

Sky, Water and Earth come together in harmony in this completely handcrafted fine silver pendant. Stylish and organic, the pendant is hand-sculpted, hand-textured, antiqued and polished. Hangs from a sterling silver rollo chain, punctuated with beautiful green color chrysoprase and sunstone beads. The texture is made from a mold of real coral, thus representing the deep seas. More ...

Sunset (Handmade OOAK Necklace with Hessonite Garnet, Oregon Sunstone, and Silver) from SparkleBeeDesigns

A glowing hessonite garnet sun pendant handmade in fine silver. This one of a kind pendant will remind you of the most beautiful sunset. Each ray of the sun was hand cut without any templates or guides. The half loop at the top is fine silver with a hammered texture. The pendant is suspended by two tiny high quality Oregon sunstones. More ...

Night sky pendant, handmade fine silver, red pearl, ruby, moonstone necklace - OOAK-Twilight from Envydesignsjewelry

Gazing out of the window on the night sky, the moon hanging low over the sea, with the red glow of Mars in the distance. This moonlight pendant is sculpted of recycled silver, from a lino-carving I made. More ...

From Sea to Shore - Dichronic Glass in Fine Silver Necklace from Lifeartdesigns

From sea to shore. A large blue dichronic glass cabachon set into a texturized fine silver pendant. This is one of my handcrafted fine silver pendants made from silver metal clay. A large round blue dichronic cabachon is the focal point of this fine silver pendant. More ...

Amethyst and Precious Metal Clay Necklace from Heartsabustin

February's birthstone set in sterling silver and backed by fine silver from precious metal clay. I created the back of the pendant from ArtClay SlowDry 650, a form of precious metal clay. I texturized it with a handmade texture plate I created from polymer clay, and fired it. I formed a bezel and edged it with more precious metal clay. More ...

Amethyst twilight mist silver necklace from StuckOnSilver

Amethyst cushion cut stone in a rustic fine silver prong setting. The lavender amethyst gemstone measures approx. 8x10 mm and the pendant with the bail measures approx. 10x20 mm. More ...

The public poll on the right is open for two weeks. The technical poll, also open for two weeks, is restricted to MCHs team members only. Enjoy and don't forget to vote! Please cast your vote on the right column; and if you post a comment, you will be automatically entered into our December blog giveaway. Polls will be close on December 14th.

Sea & Sky Challenge Technical Poll

For MCHs only. Thanks!