Monthly Archives: June 2013

The War Years Inspire a New Enamel Project for Jan Brown

Copper Poppies with Letter and photos from the war

We’ve been busy at the studio, lots of great work being done by the students and some experimenting by me:)

We’ve started a longer project a month or so ago, not jewellery, more of an installation of small objects on a theme of the student’s choice. The idea vary from Fossils, to Light, to knitted lace, I’ll be sharing more of these a bit later on.

Today I want to show the work of Jan Brown, Jan’s grandmother has kept a lot of memorabilia from the war years, correspondence with relatives in the trenches and post cards of people traveling around England and Europe at that time, all beautifully kept in albums, an amazing record of the time.

Copper Poppies with Letter and photos from the war

Copper Poppies with Letter and photos from the war

Jan also wanted to work in the ‘Feminine Factor’, how women’s lives changed here at home. They had to adjust to life without their men, on farms, in factories, women took up the slack and ventured into jobs not generally held by them before, this changed their thinking about what they COULD do and had enormous long-term effects in itself!

To symbolise this Feminine factor, Jan decided to use the inspiration from a large crochet tablecloth, made for Jan by her Grandmother. This lacy design is used in the copper Poppies she’s made so far (Poppies are symbolic for the region in Belgium where the men werte fighting)

Jan forging out the Copper Poppy shape

Jan forging out the Copper Poppy shape

The first poppies were copper, forged to thin and shape them.

Copper Poppy with punched lace pattern

Copper Poppy with punched lace pattern

The Lace tablecloth pattern was applied by punching with a simple nail punch, the poppy is made up of a double layer of petals.

Copper Mesh Poppy - note the lovely lace effect punched into the mesh

Copper Mesh Poppy – note the lovely lace effect punched into the mesh

Poppy petals were cut from fine copper mesh and the lace pattern punched in, the photo is lovely I think, but you should see this in real life, it is gorgeous!

 

Mesh Poppy Centre and Copper Stamens ready for enamelling

Mesh Poppy Centre and Copper Stamens ready for enamelling

Jan made a centre from a slightly larger mesh size, made the stamens and is now ready to start enamelling. I’ll update this post when more work is ready!

An interesting side note here: Jan has never seen a real Poppy!!! Her research was done on Pinterest, I had NO idea Poppies were so popular until I saw the searches there!