The Studio – Jewelry Blog by Rio Grande

What Are You Working on Now? Enter Our August Contest and You May Find Yourself in the Spotlight!

Jul 30, 2012
21 Comments
Molly Therese Bell

What inspires you these days? What materials are you dying to work with? Each month we can hardly wait to peek into your studios, see images of your works-in-progress, and hear about the evolution of your work. And each month we also feature the work of a random winner – who, in addition to getting a moment in the spotlight, wins a $10 Rio credit!. A great big THANK YOU to all who entered this month, we enjoyed seeing and hearing about your work!

This month's winner, Cuong Abel Sy, is a senior at Rhode Island College majoring in metalsmithing and jewelry design. Photos and an interesting account of Cuong's process follows. Take a look:

Hello! My name is Cuong Abel Sy, It’s summer so I’ve had to motivate myself in order to keep up with the skill sets I’ve learned thus far. I have a jewelry blog in which I discuss my current projects including progression shots and personal commentary on pieces I’ve made, my blog can be found here: http://cuongsy.wordpress.com/

I am currently working on a bunch of different projects. That’s just how I roll, I tend to start one project, put it down, start another, put that down, and start another. I typically eventually finish all my projects. I find working in this manner keeps me from getting bored and making mistakes out of pure boredom. Plus I enjoy multitasking, it makes me feel more machine than man.

The project I’d like to discuss is a potential series of tube bent rings which incorporate some sort of irregular stone setting. I’ve found stone setting is one of the skills I’ve yet to become competent at, so I figure I might as well get used to it by doing it. The first ring I completed includes two different sized tubes bent and soldered, covering the join with a jump ring. I set a 4mm CZ upside down inside a flared tube. The other end of the ring has a set 2mm yellow sapphire. The ring has been drilled with various sized drills in random locations and around the base of the set stones to give the stones a bit more light. I also started a second tube bent ring with a similar premise. Thanks for your time!

Thank you and congratulations, Cuong!

Now it's your turn to show us what you're working on! Add a comment to this post with photos of something that's on your bench right now. This next part is REALLY important, so take notes!
We need the following information in order for your entry to be considered:

  1. Your full name (and a link to your website/Etsy store, if you like)
  2. A photo of your chosen project. Include two or three photos if you like!
  3. A description of the project you're featuring. If you can include a little about your approach or technique, even better! Your fellow jewelers LOVE to read this stuff and so do we.
  4. After you add your comment, be sure to check back and make sure your photo has uploaded as it should. We don't want to miss your pic!

Enter and you might be spending an extra 10 bucks at Rio Grande this time next month. We'll announce our next winner in late July! Andy, over at Rio's facebook page will keep you posted on the deadline, so stay tuned!

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Renaissance Wax is Here!

Jul 26, 2012
3 Comments
Yvonne M. Padilla

You asked for it…we’ve got it! Renaissance Wax is here and it’s flying off the shelf. Yvonne M. Padilla loves using Renaissance Wax on her finished BRONZclay™ pieces to seal in the rich color of the bronze. But it’s not limited to just bronze, the wax works on any metal, as well as other materials that need enhanced luster and protection. Check out The Studio today to learn more about this wonderful, versatile stuff!

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Covered with Color: Introducing Kliar E-Coating

Jul 25, 2012
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Have you been looking for a unique way to bring color to your jewelry pieces? On The Studio today, Ashli Brooke Taylor, of Rio’s Tech Support Team, demonstrates one simple way to use the Kliar E-Coating system to add a great punch of color to your jewelry. Kliar E-Coating is a type of nano-ceramic electro coating that is abrasive-resistant and hypoallergenic. Check it out!

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The Argentium Revolution

Jul 23, 2012
9 Comments
Charles Allenden
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Argentium International has implemented a continuous research and development program to better understand the properties of Argentium silver alloys and learn how to optimize these properties for different applications. Today, on The Studio, Charles Allenden tells us about the fascinating evolution of Argentium – more reason to try this exceptional silver alloy.

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Tech Tidbits: Pickle, Quick-Change Hand Piece, and Customizing Your Bench Pin

Jul 19, 2012
1 Comment
Yvonne M. Padilla

It’s time for another compilation of Tech Tidbits! Every Tuesday, our Tech Team here at Rio posts juicy little tidbits on Facebook. It’s been way too long since we last shared their tips, tricks, and jewelry trivia on The Studio. Read on to discover some of their latest nuggets of tech gold!

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Eddie’s Tips: The Ethics of Precious Metal Mining

Jul 18, 2012
2 Comments
Eddie Bell
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In today’s follow-up post on Rio Grande’s silver supplies—Sustainability of Recycled vs. Mined Silver, Eddie Bell explores mining practices and shares a few examples of mining companies that are behaving in a responsible way.

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The Drill Press: Mark Nelson’s Tips for Success

Jul 16, 2012
5 Comments
Mark Nelson
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Do you have a drill press? Because if you don’t, you should! A new tool, especially a drill press, can be intimidating. If you don’t know where to begin or what to do with one, never fear—here’s a handy guide to getting started, plus a few tips on what to do with it once you get going.

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The Good, The Bad and the Cuddly Warm Fuzzies—Review Rio!

Jul 12, 2012
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Shelby Chant
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Since we added product-review functionality to our website last year, we’ve began to notice something. Sprinkled between the lines of these product reviews were these little gems of praise. Praise about us, our company, our service, our support. What can we say? We loved it! Customers were eager to tell us what they thought about Rio, and we knew it would only benefit our customers even more to listen to the good, the bad and the cuddly warm fuzzies about RIO. So we’ve made it easy for customers to review us – read on to learn more!

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Eddie’s Tips: Sustainability of Recycled vs. Mined Silver

Jul 11, 2012
1 Comment
Eddie Bell
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Our customers ask us pretty regularly about the origin of our silver products and are interested in knowing how much of our silver material is recycled and how much comes directly from a mine. In today’s post, Eddie Bell shares his wisdom on the subject!

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Etsy Stores We Love: Pantera Pens

Jul 9, 2012
1 Comment
Molly Therese Bell

Matthew Davis’ Etsy Store, Pantera Pens, features stunning hand-crafted pens and sterling silver jewelry. Take a look at why Pantera Pens is an Etsy Store We Love!

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