Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Metal Clay ... was the Best Invention Ever! -- Barbara Alcock Gurlek

Happy Holidays! While the outside is cold, cozy up inside in warmth and check out our December feature here! This month we've metal clay artist Barbara Alcock Gurlek of Fishbonesilver. As you can tell from looking at her wearable art, her inspirations come from the sea where she lives by.

Silver Aquarium Pendant by Fishbonesilver

Why did you pick your shop name?
The first thing I made from metal clay looked like a fish bone.

When did you first become interested in Metal Clay? How long have you been designing jewelry using Metal Clay?
About 6 years, I saw a pair of earrings made from depression glass and thought to myself, I bet I could do that. I began researching which led me to metal clay. I thought that was the best invention ever, think of the creativity!

What was your first piece of Metal Clay jewelry?
A teardrop shaped pendant with an ascii fish on it. I still have it and love it!

Ascii Fish Pendant by Fishbonesilver

Would you tell us your creative process?
Mostly when I'm walking or riding my bike I think of different designs.

What inspires you?
Nature mainly, I live in a coastal community with the ocean and a lagoon not far away. One of my walking places is a linear trail with lots of nature.

Why did you design the giveaway piece? What is special about your giveaway piece?
I think this piece really describes most of my work. I do other things too but I love doing the sea inspired designs the most.

Sea Inspired Necklace by Fishbonesilver

What are the major challenges when creating metal clay jewelry?
Having it dry out or cracking if I'm not working fast enough. Then I have to wet it and wait a few minutes for it to get to the right consistency. Oh and the cost.

What do you enjoy most about working in Metal Clay?
There is so much you can do with it!

What is your greatest ambition as a Metal Clay artist?
To create art beyond my expectations!

Barbara is giving away her Sea Inspired Necklace in Silver to one lucky winner. Here are the rules to enter the MCHs blog giveaway:

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 here so we can keep track. 

  1. Follow our blog = 1 entry
  2. Check out featured artist and post favorite piece on the blog = 1 entry
  3. Heart featured artist’s shop = 1 entry
  4. Follow featured artist on Facebook = 1 entry
  5. Make a purchase = 2 entries
  6. Refer a friend = 1 entry
  7. Tweet about the giveaway using key word metalclayheads = 1 entry
  8. Share the Metal Clay Heads blog giveaway link on FB (Go to http://www.facebook.com/MetalClayHeadsTeam and click Share) = 1 entry

The giveaway will run for two weeks. We will announce the winner after Christmas. Good luck!


  1. Nice blog article Barbara, I will tweet and share on my facebook page.

  2. Amazing work! I heart Barbara's shop and not only because of the giveaway <3. My favorite piece is the fan shaped starfish earings...
    I just started to work with metal clay and I feel sooo inspired every time I come to the blog...

  3. I also live by the sea and love it. Your work is beautiful.

  4. Great piece Barbara, but I love all of your work!