31 March 2011

My ETSY shop is open!

Take yourself down to www.etsy.com and search for seller Charlotte Bezzant, and up pops my shop! You can now buy from me on-line and pay by Pay Pal. It is a real dipping my toe in the water, test to see what people think of my stuff. Some of you will have seen my 'dragonflies drifted' pieces before, well I have made a couple more of them, as they have always attracted such great comments, and they were some of the first pieces posted there last night.

A busy day polishing

... Just about managed to wash the rouge off my nose, after a busy morning with the polishing mops. How is it I always manage to get it all over my face? Still- I am in shared studio space on Thursdays, and it does give the others something to laugh about!

I polished up 10 of my heart pendants, as I have now opened my Etsy shop and have started to list items on there for sale, including these (more on that later). I was very pleased with some new cufflinks and collar stiffeners that I had done, that had lovely display hallmarks on. (I had to offer something for the boys!) And I also tumble polished some cast twigs and etched text pendants that are from my Arctic inspired range. The twigs looked very beautiful with some areas of high shine - they really reminded me of the real thing, which was a sparkly snow and ice covered birch.

28 March 2011

The perils of etching

I have had a frustrating time recently, as my etching has not been going well. Considering it often plays a part in my designs, things come to a bit of a grinding halt when it doesn't work. It's not just the pause in production that gets to me, but also the fact that sterling is sooooo expensive at the moment, that mistakes and problems really hit you in the bank balance! Recently I have had things under etch (ie not deep enough), over etch (fuzzy round the edges) and the result is the same - text you cannot read! I have been trying to etch wording to go with my 'Wilderness' story - a little range inspired by my trip up into into the Arctic Circle last month.

This image shows recent struggles. I should have been able to cut out little pendants that read 'the aurora borealis danced across the sky' and 'the pale sunlight of the north rose above the wilderness' but of these three etches only one is usable, and even then it is not as defined as I would like. I have spent part of this morning starting to file away the failed etches from the silver, in the hope of being able to re-use it in another project.

On a happier note, my stuff is back from hallmarking and I am really pleased with how it has been marked. I used a combination of my punched mark - which is only 1mm high so it can be used in rings, and some laser etched hallmarks - which are not so deep- but are bigger, 2 and 3mm. What a lot of polishing I have to do!

21 March 2011

Hallmarking time

I spent part of today getting a batch of stuff ready to go off to the Assay office for Hallmarking. As I live in London, my work gets the London hallmark. As well as the usual marks, it will get struck with my makers mark - CB.

I gave everything a rub over with the finest emery paper, no point polishing it all up as it can get a bit scuffed by the time it gets back to you. I had 32 items in all. You have to pay extra if they are individually packaged, so I followed a tip and rolled them in one piece of tissue, just hope that's OK as it is the first time I have done it that way.

There is quite a diverse lot of stuff going off, several heart pendants which I had cast up from a couple of originals I made (more on that later) plus some components for a range that I have been working on that was inspired by a recent trip up into the Arctic Circle. I'll add a post about that soon.

18 March 2011


I mentioned in my last post, that in the Summer, I will be sharing exhibition space in my house with my mother. I am lucky enough to have an amazing relationship with her; we are family, but also best friends. We both wear a version of this necklace, which is called Family. It has minute photos of my grandmother, my mother, and me. A strong bond of strong women. The photos are only about 8mm, and they are set behind glass with a traditional rub over setting. Although you can see the detail in this photo, you can't appreciate the beauty of it's small scale. Inspired in some degree by the chatelaines worn by Victorian women, I love the delicate movement of this piece due to the fact that all the elements are individually attached.

ARThouse Open Studio Event

One of the first events I am working towards, is the local open studio festival here in the Borough of Richmond Upon Thames. This festival is open to all artists and creative crafts people living or working in the Borough who would like to open their houses or studios to the public. Its aim is to promote the creative communities here, and to showcase the range of work produced locally. By opening our studios it allows visitors to engage with the relationship between the artist and their art. Last years festival involved over 150 artists who exhibited their work in their homes, studios, and other venues.

ARThouse 2011, takes place over two weekends in June. This gives me plenty of time to build up stock levels and work on new ideas. I am really looking forward to the event, as I will also be sharing my space with my mother, who will have her prints on display here.

Welcome to my new blog.

Originally a Fashion Graduate, I have been making silver jewellery for many years now. What started as a recreational hobby has grown into something more, as people have shown interest in my work and commissions have come in. Now with my two small boys both in school full time, I have more hours to spend creating things that I love. For the first time, I can spend enough time at my workbench, to produce more work than than ever before.

The aim of this blog, is to let people see what I make, and also to let people share in the day to day of a designer maker who is just starting out on her own. You can follow my ups and downs, successes (and possibly failures!), and you can post comments and advice that might help me on my way.