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January 16, 2019, 05:16:48 pm
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Jade necklace design by Art In Stone - 800 carats, 11 pieces

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Author Topic: Jade necklace design by Art In Stone - 800 carats, 11 pieces  (Read 417 times)
Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« on: June 02, 2015, 08:23:31 pm »

I have been doing my own Jewelry design from time to time for over 40 years. I have started doing them again in addition to my knife works as I am starting to become involved in the local Art Community and shows.  I was accepted for all 3 of the local juried Art shows so I thought I would share one of my works.   

As always I am not at all secretive about my work so if you have questions feel free to ask.

The Jade used on this work is a fairly technically complex Jade with directional cutting necessary and a both swirling and layered structure.  I cannot explain how this occurs but it is a bugger to work with.  It is from the King Mountain mine.   I believe the spots are pseudo-morphed  quartz crystals as seen in a lot of the Jade from Wyoming.  The finished Jade weighs about 808 carats but I  rounded down to 800 carats.  Each of the pieces is finished to fit a leather cord up to 2.3 mm thick as well as silver and gold chains with tapered and elongated holes drilled.  The piece is designed to wear as 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 or 11 pieces and both sides are finished too.....



* J243 B.JPG (603.67 KB, 1983x1728 - viewed 23 times.)

* J243 C.JPG (515.92 KB, 1681x1691 - viewed 18 times.)
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domdeslagons
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2015, 10:53:49 pm »

 dancer5 nice work, not too heavy to wear?
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2015, 12:00:11 am »

800 carats is 5.6 ounces so it is big but not too heavy for an evening out or even a day at work. 
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1200cc
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« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2015, 06:24:04 am »

You said both side are finished can we get a look at the back too please. I'm curious what you used to drill the holes. I would be interested in see some pics of the holes also. That is if it's not too much trouble. I think its a very well balanced piece, I'm partial to jade pieces though. Thanks for sharing it.
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55fossil
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« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2015, 09:09:10 am »

Great balance with the intermingled shapes.  I also like the unique patterns in the jade.  How do you price a piece like this?   You have 800 carats / 11 separate cabochons. Then there is the reality of competing in the market with others. Also, the value of the rough and unique patterns come into play.  Could you post your sale price on this piece and advice on how it was valued?
     
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Michael S Hoover - Redrummd
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« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2015, 10:20:31 am »

Several questions so I will try to answer in one response. 

1) I only took pictures of the one side and it takes too much time to set up for photos to take pictures of the back.  The only difference is the pattern match is best on the side I took photos of.

2) To save on costs (time used to do the work) I drill all holes with just good eye/hand coordination.  I hold the piece between my thumb and index finger, resting on a towel.  I use diamond coated drill  bits. I get a tiny start hole and then start dipping the piece into a container of water.  I start by drilling a 1 mm hole first, angled slightly down from what will be the top of the elongated hole.  I drill from both sides and use a penciled line around the piece to set the top of the holes.  Once the holes meet in the middle I use a circular motion to expand the hole somewhat.  I stand the piece on it's bottom and then use the bit to level the hole to a bottom.  This serves as the guide hoe for the diamond coated 2mm bit used next.   I then use a 2mm bit to get a perfect hole at the bottom which usually blends into the top 1mm hole very well.  I do touch up if needed by going back to the 1 mm diamond coated bit. I end up with a hole about 1.5mm at the top that goes to about 2.4mm across at the bottom.  I use the 1 mm bit and the 4mm ball bit to give a slight curve to the top of the hole where a cord or chain would potentially catch.

After sanding to 600 grit I go back and use a diamond coated 4 mm ball bit to give a taper to the edges of the elongated hole and use a piece of wet cotton string to clean out the hole very well.  I try to be sure all of the "mud" is out especially if the Jade is fairly translucent or the hole can show through. 

After polishing the piece of stone (I use this technique on all types of stone - not just Jade.) I put the piece into a container of melted high temperature candle wax under one of my shop lights.  A sardine type can works fine as it accommodates the long pieces I use.  Put the can on a piece of wood to keep it melted and to avoid stating a fire with the shop light!  Once the piece gets hot and the drilled hole fully coated with wax I get another piece of cotton string and use it to "polish" the inside of the drilled hole.  I use epoxy on the ends of the string pieces so that I can easily push them through the drilled hole.  This polish gives a decent hole appearance.  I keep a supply of the epoxied string pieces hanging near my work bench.  They are about 18 to 24 inches long.

After wearing a piece for a couple of months on a leather cord the hole actually get polished very well.

Doing a hole from start to finish takes me less than 30 minutes total on average.  This includes the time used with the wax and string polishing of the inside of the hole.

I do everything with just eye/hand coordination.  I do use a micrometer to get the two pieces on each side (or earrings) to be within .5mm in length and width.   All of the lines and sides are completed with just eye and hand coordination.  I average about 1.5 hours per polished two sided piece which includes even the marking out and cutting of the preforms from slabs to final wax polishing of the drilled holes.  So, I have about 16 to 18 hours total in this piece.

3) Pricing is always complex as I price by results not by effort, time spent, or even costs of materials.  This piece turned out to be exceptional even though it is the first piece with more than five stones in it.  I am in no rush to sell it so I will be asking $999. for it.  At $20. an hour for my time at 18 hours my costs:

Labor -    $360.
Jade -      $40. (I get my Jade wholesale and used a bit over 1 pound of Jade)
Shop Expense in wear and tear plus the box and leather used for display about - $50.

Total "costs" - $450. with $360. profit at that selling point.  So, at some point I will sell this piece for something above the floor of $450.
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