CHICKENSCRATCH is a Studio Jewelry Company founded in 1988 by the husband and wife team of Lisa and Scott Cylinder. We met while studying Jewelry and Metalsmithing at Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. We decided to pool our respective knowledge and expertise to create a sophisticated, intelligent and fun line of Studio Multiples. We both design and create the work in our home studio and pride ourselves on our high degree of creativity and craftsmanship.
Most of our jewelry is made from base metals (brass, copper, nickel silver, and sterling silver) sheet and wire that is hand cut and manipulated. Each piece of CHICKENSCRATCH has been joined with silver solder for strength and durability. Many pieces incorporate clever cold-joining techniques, as well. We often use various plastics, found objects and whatever other materials strike our fancy.
We have developed a unique patination process that enables us to achieve our rich colors. These are the finishes we use on the majority of the work. We also incorporate a beautiful verdigris (green) patina that has a classical appeal. The jewelry that is not finished in a patina color is often silver or 24K gold plated.
We use silver and gold leaf to accent and detail many of our pieces, as well as colored silver leafs and luminous mica powders. We also use bright, semi-transparent enamel paints over metal elements. The paint adds bold accents of color to the more earthy tones of the patinas and metallics.
The careful choices made in finishing each piece also includes the selection of the findings. Our pin back is of our own design, made of stainless steel, and is hand-sharpened and sprung. This is a far superior mechanism than most we have seen. It is quite strong and should not come open without assistance. Our ear posts are surgical steel and our ear wires are either sterling silver or gold-filled.
Each piece of CHICKENSCRATCH comes on its own card and is individually bagged. We recommend strongly that when you’re not wearing your piece(s), that they be kept on the card and in their bag to protect them from damage. Although the surfaces are durable, they are not indestructible.
The most important aspect of our jewelry is the imagery. It has narrative themes based upon fables, play on words and our observations. Within most of these tales are movable elements; Free swinging legs, tongues and tails… It is this kinetic facet that gives our jewelry its charm and character. We believe our work is very accesible due to this humorous, narrative nature and the viewers need to interact with the piece for “The Story” to be told.