USA: free shipping on orders $95+
February 14, 2024
All of your cuff bracelet questions answered! This blog post will answer your questions about size, wear, adjustments, and care for your botanical cuff bracelet.
I’m often asked how I got the idea to make jewelry from the prickly pear cactus skeleton. I moved to Tucson in 2010 to start my jewelry making career full-time. I was walking my dog around my new neighborhood, and saw a live prickly pear cactus with one pad that had the dried skeleton exposed. I was drawn to this beautiful, intricate maze of dried fiber, and immediately knew I wanted that pattern wrapped around my wrist. Luckily, I was taking lost wax casting classes at the time and knew I could use this technique to replicate the cactus skeleton in metal.
Lila Clare's cuff bracelets are lost wax cast from the prickly pear cactus skeleton. The use of nature's own organic pattern results in stunning, organic, wearable art forms. The shapes lend themselves to cuff bracelets, with the prickly pear design literally wrapped around your wrist.
How to determine what size bracelet is best for you:
How to put on and take off your bracelet:
January 16, 2024
Lost wax casting is an ancient and intricate art form that has been used for centuries to create everything from stunning sculptures to intricate pieces of jewelry. While this method is often associated with making jewelry from hand-carved wax models, it can also be a way to capture the delicate beauty of botanical wonders.
So, how do I go from foraged cactus skeleton to piece of jewelry? Here's the short version of my take on this timeless technique:
Want more detail? Read on!
The journey of lost wax casting begins with the creation of a wax model. In the context of botanical objects, this might involve meticulously sculpting a flower, leaf, or even an entire plant. The level of detail and precision in the wax model is crucial, as it will be faithfully replicated in the final metal piece.
Once the wax model is perfected, it is encased in a heat-resistant material, forming a mold that will later serve as the vessel for the molten metal. This mold is then heated, causing the wax to melt and flow out, leaving behind a hollow space in the exact shape of the original botanical model.
With the mold ready, the next step is to introduce molten metal into the hollow space. This metal can range from bronze and brass to silver or gold, depending on the desired final piece. The metal is carefully poured into the mold, filling every nook and cranny of the botanical form.
The metal is left to cool and solidify, creating a perfect replica of the wax model. Once the metal has hardened, the outer mold is removed, unveiling the exquisite metal botanical object within.Finishing Touches:
The freshly cast metal botanical piece may undergo additional processes to refine its appearance. This could involve polishing to enhance the shine and luster of the metal, as well as any necessary detailing to accentuate the features of the plant.
Applications and Artistry:
Lost wax casting of botanical objects opens up a world of creative possibilities. Artisans can create intricate jewelry pieces inspired by nature, incorporating flowers, leaves, or vines into their designs. Sculptors may choose to craft larger pieces, such as garden sculptures or decorative elements for interior spaces.
The inherent beauty of botanical elements, combined with the precision of lost wax casting, results in pieces that not only capture the essence of nature but also stand as enduring works of art. Each piece tells a unique story, a frozen moment in time when the delicate intricacies of the plant world were transformed into everlasting metal masterpieces.
Lost wax casting of botanical objects is a fascinating blend of art and craftsmanship, showcasing the ability to immortalize the beauty of nature in metal. As artists continue to explore this ancient technique, we can expect to see an array of stunning botanical creations that celebrate the timeless allure of the plant kingdom.
January 04, 2024
I sent this message to my email subscribers this morning. If you'd like to receive weekly emails from me click here.
I've been thinking about my wins and challenges of 2023, and what I want to create in 2024. I have a lot to say!
On New Year's Eve 2022 I chose the word "Balance" for 2023. I was feeling that my work/life balance was skewed too heavily towards work. So I made some changes to give me more balance and had some great wins in 2023.
Looking forward in 2024, my chosen word is Mastery. I want to work on some new skills, have more control over acceptances to fine art festivals, dig deeper into my business finances, and continue to fine-tune balance. Some specifics things in the near future:
Thanks for reading! I look forward to connecting with you more this year! 💕 As always, please reply with your reflections, thoughts, requests, and if you have anything you're looking towards this year.
November 25, 2023
Thank you for supporting my small business.
Shopping small matters. It supports the local economy, keeps unique products in the marketplace, fosters actual human connections between maker and customer, and fuels creativity.
Supporting my small business tells me that what I do matters. I make Lila Clare Jewelry to represent our connection to nature, to one another, and to our deepest selves. When you buy Lila Clare, it's more than a monetary exchange - it's a deeper exchange of vision, personal expression, and love.
Save 15% sitewide this weekend. No code needed, the discount is automatic at checkout.
Thank you for allowing me to share my dream with you.
August 07, 2023
May 29, 2023
May 09, 2023
April 12, 2023
April 04, 2023
March 17, 2023
November 08, 2022
One of the questions I'm asked most often is, "How do I take care of my jewelry?" To help you keep your pieces looking their best, I'm excited to introduce my very own jewelry cleaning products!
These liquid silver and gold jewelry cleaners will make it super easy to keep your jewelry shiny. Find all of the jewelry care products here.
Here's what's new:
Here's how to use the products:
August 23, 2022
Two of the questions I'm frequently asked are: "How did you get started making jewelry?" and "What are your inspirations?"
Although I didn't start making jewelry until my late 20s, I was raised surrounded by my dad's art, including his handmade jewelry. My father made several pieces of jewelry - most memorably, my mother’s wedding ring. He carved it from wax, then lost wax cast it in gold. It’s a wide band, thick and abstract. I grew up with that being the definition of jewelry - not some mass produced setting with a standard diamond.
In fact, my mom just didn't have a lot of "typical jewelry". The jewelry I grew up seeing was that ring, and the other really unique things that dad made. So. the jewelry "norm" in our household was more distinctive, artful, almost esoteric. I'm grateful for being steeped in this jewelry making tradition. It has allowed me to go beyond designing pieces that look like what's on TV or sold in chain jewelry stores, and, instead, design nature-inspired jewelry that prioritizes self expression.
My Botanic Collection echos the natural, organic designs that my dad created. I'm proud to create jewelry that honors my origins, and to make unique pieces that create meaning and significance for your life.