Texas Earrings

– Texas Earrings sketch,
based on the Texas flag design –

Sketch the Texas flag design for the earrings.

The first step in creating these earrings is to sketch the design within the teardrop shaped outline. Using the copyrighted Texas Glory design, the artist adapts the design to fit the outline of the earrings.

She makes sure to incorporate the entire Texas flag design. This includes the red, white and blue colors, along with the star. It’s not easy to incorporate all of the parts of the Texas flag while still being creative. The earrings need to be stylish while still being recognizable as uniquely from Texas. This is where the true artistry shows, right from the very beginning!

Once she’s happy with the general layout and colors in the outline of the earrings, Shirley is ready to move on to the next step.

Cut & shape the gold wires.

Shirley uses the sketches she just made to form the gold wires. It’s a little bit like tracing at this stage. She shapes the wires on top of the sketch and then moves them over to the blank template. The artist has to carefully cut and then form each tiny gold wire.

These tiny wires will form the partitions that make the different sections of the earrings. Each section will be filled in with a different color to create the Texas flag design. This is where the technique gets its name ‘cloisonné,’ which is French for ‘partition.’ This jewelry technique uses these tiny gold wires to make the partitions that separate the different enamel colors.

As each wire is cut and shaped, using the sketch as a template, it’s then moved onto the blank earring outline.

– bending the gold wires
to fit the Texas flag design-

– Texas Earrings sketch,
based on the Texas flag design –

Combine the wires to outline the design

In this step, you can see the design starting to take shape. As all of the tiny gold wires are added, you can see the layout that will eventually be the Texas flag design. Of course, the colors and the iconic Texas star are still missing in this stage. Without the colored sketch from the first step, this design would be difficult to recognize, for sure!

Because these are earrings, it’s extra important to be accurate in this stage. The earrings will need to be symmetrical enough to be a pair. So, Shirley has to be very exact in cutting and forming each small wire so that they will all fit the design perfectly. For that reason, she uses tools, such as tweezers, in this step.

Adding the Texas star to the earrings!

This is an important step! It’s finally time to add the iconic Texas star. Now the design starts to be more recognizable as the Texas flag. Texas is the Lone Star State, so any good Texas design must include that lone star, of course! The star on the flag of Texas represents all of Texas and stands for unity. It stands for the solidarity of all Texans.

The silver star in the field of blue is definitely one of the highlights of this Texas flag design. This one is made from fine silver and has to be sawed out by hand. It’s a very difficult process, but Shirley makes sure that each star is perfect before adding it to her Texas earring design.

– Adding the fine silver star
to the Texas flag design –

– bending the gold wires
to fit the Texas flag design-

Building the earrings

Once everything is laid out, it’s moved onto the actual earring background. This is where the shape of the earring is set. The design is moved from the outline to the actual earring shapes.

The wires and star are set onto the piece to be fired. In the firing process, the enamel will melt and the wires and star will then be permanently attached. This is really where we see the Texas earrings start to take shape!

After attaching the wires and star to the earrings via firing the piece, then the enamels can be added in the next step.

Polishing the jewel

After the first firing, the jewel is then polished. You can see the clear difference between this image and the one before it, pre-polishing. In this step, the earrings start to take on their shine and luminosity.

After polishing, Shirley cuts out another piece of silver to match the size of the jewel. Then, a bezel (silver wire) is made and soldered to this sterling silver backing.

If all goes well, the jewel will be set into the bezel easily. Then, everything is polished again to make sure these Texas earrings have depth and brilliance to them. The last step is to add any bale or wires to make them actually functional as earrings.

– Polishing the jewel
ensures that these earrings shine! –

– adding the colors to
the Texas flag design-

Adding color to the earrings.

This is an exciting step because the design will finally get the colors of the Texas flag! Here, Shirley adds colored enamel. Again, we see the partitions where the Cloisonné technique gets its name. Each partition is filled in with a different colored enamel. The tiny gold wires will prevent the colors from mixing during firing. That way, each color will have its own bright, bold color.

These Texas earrings have a design based on the flag of the Lone Star State. In the Texas flag, the blue represents loyalty. The white is for purity, and the red is for bravery. These are the three colors are used in the copyrighted Texas Glory design for these earrings.

The colors look drab now because they haven’t been fired yet. (In fact, the red enamel almost looks the same as the white here.) But don’t worry, they will magically become luminous and gorgeous once they have been fired and polished! The finished Texas earrings will have bright, bold colors that get noticed, even from a distance.

Polish & finish the earrings!

After firing, the artist polishes the earrings and gets them ready to wear. This is where we can finally see the Texas Glory design brought to life! The gold wires have kept the colors separated and the enamels have revealed their true colors. The lone star looks gorgeous in the field of blue. We can really see the Texas flag design, but in a creative and stylish pair of earrings.

This is the last step and now these Texas earrings are ready to find a new home. They are ready to go off and adorn the ears of someone with a pride as big as Texas!

– Finished Texas Earrings –
Texas Glory earrings with a creative Texas flag design, made using the Cloisonne technique