October 19, 2013
This is a bit of a detour from my usual jewelry making blog posts.
But there is a really cool bit that’s definitely jewelry related at the end,
so please stick around.
We just returned from a 10 day vacation (yes, we’re retired)
to Chicago and rural Wisconsin.
Yes, actually, taking a iconic Fall Color tour that retired people do by rental car.
It was a blend of big city excitement with great architecture, museums,
ethnic food and lovely, lively small towns, gorgeous farm country,
and eye popping fall colors.
And lots of beer and cheese! Ever heard of Reuben soup??
Found it a delightfully warming treat on a rainy Saturday
at Cedarburg’s Oktoberfest.
A rustic blend of cheese, sauerkraut, and cubed corned beef…
just like the sandwich!
There was also a wonderful art studio tour of about 25 artists
in all media going on in that area of Wisconsin.
Great time all around!
Visited the International Crane Foundation near Baraboo,
who does amazing work world wide to save this endangered bird.
This whooping crane is still the most rare of the species.
Last of the original covered bridges in Wisconsin.
Ran into three bridal parties waiting to take pictures at this lovely setting.
A bit of a laugh as we watched two gussied up groups
running across the parking lot trying to reach the bridge first.
And took a three mile hike up over the bluff above Devil’s Lake.
So if you’re still with me…here’s the cool jewelry part.
Just before we left on this trip, our brand new, 30 years-in-the-making,
downtown central library opened.
We’ve been watching it go up now for a while
and it was on our hit list of things to do locally, when we returned.
It’s absolutely fantastic!!
I love libraries.
In fact, whenever we’re in a big city somewhere,
we love to go peek into the downtown library.
Did this in Chicago too.
They had this cool state of the art digital learning center with classes and demos.
We caught one in progress for the new 3-D printer, by MakerBot.
You could make your own spork to take home. How cool is that!
I was excited to see that our new library also has a similar center
that’s not quite up to full speed yet. But the young lady running the lab
was happy to talk to us about the printer and materials.
She was making a green plastic model of a nut and bolt at the moment…
so fascinating to watch it in action.
The material is a filament on large spools in lots of bright colors and also clear.
Right now, the 3-D model is made from programming,
but there are plans to purchase an additional piece
that allows one to use a real object to program the printer,
ei. one of the ear pieces broke on your eyeglasses.
The printer could create a new one.
She had some small things already made on the table
and told us we could take one…guess what I choose?
A stretchy green plastic bracelet!
The surface has this pretty iridescence and undulating pattern.
Could be ushering in a whole new era of jewelry design and construction.
Any new innovations caught your eye lately? Maybe just new to you?
Something you’re curious about or want to add to your jewelry making materials
I’d love to know what you’re up to.