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Friday, December 9, 2011

Necklace and Bracelet - Focals by Marsha Hedrick

Several months ago, I happened upon an Etsy shop owned by Marsha Hedrick.  The name of Marsha's shop is AmazingPorcelain.  Marsha is a registered Oklahoma Choctaw Artist that makes a variety of porcelain jewelry components.  But what caught my eye were some matte black pieces.  I have since learned that she hand digs native red clay from near Tucson, Arizona.  She then works the clay into something usable.  Apparently, it is not black when she digs it but she explains in one of her listings that it is high in iron oxide so when it is fired in a wood fire and hen smothered in dung, the clay turns black.

The other thing that I found intriguing was the design on her black pieces.  She calls them Swift Creek Stamps.  They are reproductions of Swift Creek potters who would use wood paddles with designs carved in them to paddle clay over molds to make bowls and other pottery pieces.  The paddling compacts the clay and makes it more durable.  She has reproduced some of the Swift Creek designs into stamps and uses these stamps to make these amazing clay components.  They have a very subtle shine finish known as burnishing created by rubbing the ornament with a soft cloth before it is fired.

I completed a bracelet and a necklace using her Swift Creek components.  I made them to match, but the designs are different on each.  I hope I did them justice and I hope you enjoy looking at them.


6 comments:

Karen Totten said...

Absolutely fascinating - loved reading about this piece! Beautiful and simple! I must visit her etsy store! And...LOVE what you did with it! The colors and textures are simply beautiful and beautifully complimentary.

Marti C. said...

I think Marsha's work is more than fantastic...amazing porcelain--for sure!

Marti C. said...

And...I think you made them even more beautiful Jean!

Anonymous said...

The designs are superb, and you incorporated them into such wonderful wearable art!
vickie

Christine said...

Jean, your pieces are incredible. Thank you for sharing the story behind the focals. They are beautiful. You utilized them to their best advantage and created beauty.

sophie watkins said...

Stunning Jean.....you are so talented and really know how to pull color,design and style together! The focal pieces remind of labyrinths. Places I use to run in as child and still enjoy visiting! Thanks for sharing!!