We’re shining the spotlight on another talented metal stamping artist, the delightful Karen Roark of I Always Pick the Thimble! Karen throws down a dazzling array of delicious DIY from kitting to home decor to jewelry making on her blog. She’s a former Interior Architect who switched gears to open the retail store Urban Arts and Crafts in Kansas City, Missouri. Her metal stamped designs are sensational and she dishes up some terrific tips for metal stamping success in her posts. Please stop by her blog and social sites and show her a little love. Karen was kind enough to answer our Five Easy Questions, here are her insightful answers!
(Get the tutorial for Karen’s stunning DIY Believe and Let Go bracelet!)
Five Easy Questions
When did you start making jewelry and why?
I’ve been making jewelry for close to 10 years and metal stamping for about 4. It all began when I started seeing jewelry in clothing catalogs that I thought I could make for less – and I could! Metal stamping became an extension of my jewelry making because it’s so easy to personalize and incorporate into all types of jewelry pieces.
What is your favorite source for jewelry making inspiration?
I look through Sundance catalog for inspiration. I like working with metal, leather and natural stones and many of their pieces feature those materials.
What advice do you have for folks just starting out?
A good set of ergonomic jewelry making tools can make a world of difference! They can be a little pricey, but your hands will thank you. If you work with wire or headpins, your wire-wrapping techniques will improve as well.
What tips or tricks can you share for successful metal stamping?
Well, first of all, it’s probably not going to be perfect, and that’s o.k.. Don’t sweat it. You don’t want it to look machine made anyway, right? That being said, I always write out what I want to stamp on paper before I start. It helps prevent misspelling “typo’s’” or I guess in this case “stampo’s”! Before stamping, I draw light pencil lines and spacing marks on the metal pendants to help with alignment. Also, don’t be afraid to use the front and back of your “oops” pendants for practice. I will help increase your confidence before starting. The rest just takes a little practice.
Where can our readers find you?
Big love to Karen Roark for stopping by and sharing some great advice! Check back Friday for some tips and techniques with a super simple DIY! We’re working on all kinds of good stuff behind the scenes, so stay tuned.
Margot and Avalon