attempting to preserve my health (…so I say)

Yeah, that.  😉  Right now I’m dissolving a zinc lozenge in my mouth before going back to bed; I lay down at 8 PM or something, basically slept until midnight, then took medication.  In addition, I also took B-complex and Vitamin C supplements.

I feel kind of bad doing this instead of homework…but sometimes you really need to care for yourself, you know?  Emotionally, mentally, and physically.

I did spend about $20 at the hardware and craft stores today, though D picked up the tab at the latter.  So now I have two feet of 14g copper wire, and three feet of 16g (as I said before, the higher the gauge number, the thinner the wire).  My flush cutters can take two mm of copper wire, max., but I also have heavy-duty cutters lent me by D.

Right now I am wondering how I’m going to polish this stuff — we do have a Dremel, and polishing equipment to  go with it — but I forgot that hardware store wire (the kind one can torch, pickle, and patina) generally isn’t sold, polished.  I’ve got to figure out what to do with that.  I can’t do wire wraps around an unfinished clasp…nor should I polish anything that isn’t soldered down.  Plus, polishing compound sprays everywhere, and I’ll need to wear work clothes and a face mask + goggles.

It’s not that it’s difficult to use a pick-soldering technique to secure wirework, it’s just that I’ve never used a small butane torch, before (as versus acetylene) — and heat requires chemicals to get the oxidation and flux off.  And, well, we have silver solder, so the silver color is going to show up unless I grind it away while polishing.  And the polishing compound may get stuck in the wires.  Maybe that’s why people patinate with liver of sulfur and then polish again?

(Or maybe that’s why people buy their wire from jewelry suppliers instead of hardware stores…craft store wire brings in a different set of elements where the metal may not be [assume it isn’t] safe to heat.)

It would probably be OK, though, to file the pieces smooth with needle files and then wire-wrap…it will just look like a brushed/faceted finish.

Maybe I do need to invest in some polishing tools…I can make heavy chains, then.  (Never ever polish a chain with a rotary power tool!  You could lose fingers.)  There’s the possibility of a rock tumbler…which honestly sounds like the most economical way to work, but it’s an investment.

I did also make a little thing, yesterday.  It didn’t take too long:  it is a bracelet made with (what I think is) waxed cotton (I got it from a craft store and threw out the wrapping a long time ago), and ceramic beads.  The beads I got, surprisingly, don’t work all that well with this…twine? yarn? cord? (I guess the latter fits) — I had been hoping to put two strands through the holes, but the holes — even though they’re about 2mm wide — are only large enough to accommodate one strand.  I had been hoping to find this cord in a color other than black (maybe mauve), but honestly I’m not sure where I found it in the first place…was it with the hemp, or the perle cotton?…

I was just looking through a book and got lost for a second…this is a book that I think I got from Kinokuniya Bookstore, called Macrame Pattern Book, by Marchen Art Studio.  It’s actually a really kind thing they put together…it has pictures of finished patterns and then written and visual instructions as to how to knot the patterns.  As I’ve said before, starting in on a pattern and working it leads to a number of different possibilities for derivation from the pattern.  This book does say that the patterns are for personal use only; on the other hand, they also show some really common (public-domain) patterns, in addition to the more specific ones like the numerous “Buddhist Treasure Mesh” panel patterns toward the back of the book.

One of the patterns I really want to retry is on page 39, Double Spiral Knot.  I worked out how to do it a long time ago, after a bunch of errors.  It did, honestly, take work to learn, but now I know how to do it.  I’m curious as to how it can be combined with small beads, or if that will destroy any structure that was there in the first place.

I do want to break into one of the books by Joan Babcock — she’s published three paper books, the third of which was recently gifted to me (I’ve tried doing a knot pattern that I think I really need help on — I know I can find it, there).  Then, there is the wireweaving angle (which is why I picked up a coil of 26g round copper wire today, though if I’d known we had some already, I would have saved the $4).  Micromacrame and wirework really seem kind of parallel in aesthetics, to a point.  I think they may have the potential to work together…

And, there is one photo of a project I made, floating around the Web; I’m curious to see if I can rework it and make it into a printed and drawn pattern, which I can distribute.  For free or for pay?  I’m not sure, though I don’t think it would be wrong to ask for compensation…I probably wouldn’t charge a lot.  (Well.  Of course.  Me.  The person who has experimented with putting Creative Commons licensing on their uploaded work and works in a library.  Right.)

Okay, I’m…really getting tired, about now.  It’s about 2 AM here, so I should be getting back to bed — especially since I do really need to clean up before sleeping.

Logging off…


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Haru ("Codey") is a third-year Master's student in Library and Information Science, hoping to find a way to fuse their desire to make the world a better place and to finance their art.

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