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Project: Angel Locket

Every now and then I need to make some fresh WOW factor! This year it has been in the form of the Angel Locket…

Claire, one of my wonderful customers sent a message from my contact page asking if i could make her an Angel wings locket; it was to contain a lock of hair that was from her close friend Lucy who had tragically died. Claire was in need of a way of holding her friend close which of course any locket could provide, but also in a manner that honoured her friend’s personality and her attitude to life.

The design was initially going to be quite small based on what Claire initially thought the locket might be like  – I’m not a fan of small, it makes things harder to work on and a lot more fragile… and I’m looking for WOW remember! 😀

Photo of the sort of locket Claire had in mind…
Aww, my first rough sketch of the locket.

… So after some initial emails and phone calls Claire’s Angel was to be; easily worn all day; not too big; not too heavy; include some gold; obviously had to contain the lock of hair but it also had to show the words “Don’t stop believin” – from the song by Journey…

As the ideas began to flow and I inevitably got carried away with myself, the details of the mechanism evolved into something out of Flash Gordon!

..Oh Great! Now I can’t stop hearing the voice of Brian Blessed!
Brian in Flash
Love you BB! X

It was time to bite the first bullet and make the body in wax. This is great for realising the concept in 3D before biting the second bullet… the silver bullet!

Still not using Lost Wax Casting at tis point, so can’t go for as much detail as I’d want here…

OK, time to go for it! I use the Delft Clay casting technique to make a mould from the wax version of the body. This Video shows the melting of the silver, which is then poured into the clay mould.

This is the cast. The pour was very good as can be seen from the alien antenna on his head! …They, as well as his tiny little arms are the result of the hot silver flowing so well it tries to escape down the little air bleed holes.

Something about this commission made me want to go a bit crazy, to make it… risky and unnecessarily complicated! I love using springs and hinges to make the locket open and move, or whatever else I can get it to do! I first went with a single central spring as seen in this prototype, this worked and I toyed with the idea of leaving the spring visible (…not for long though! :D)

The springs were never quite right, so I started engineering my own.

That’s the finest sterling silver chain I could find.
Silver arms
Disarming! 😀 … There’s a sculpture happening one day!
Angel locket exploded wings
All them wings and he still can’t fly!

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One Comment

  1. Claire Pearson says:

    My beautiful best friend died the beginning of this year, she had just turned forty and was such a terrible shock to everyone that loved her. Lucy and I did everything together and I miss her more than I can describe! Her husband gave me a piece of her hair and I wanted a precious locket so I could have it with me always. I contacted Peter at the beginning of the year and he has been truly amazing, keeping me updated on all the changes to my piece and just “getting me” and what I wanted out of the finished item (actually I could not have imagined what he made for me it’s beyond perfect!) I can not recommend this man more highly he has made me a piece of art that I know Lucy would love just as much as I do thank you thank you thank you xxx

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