Instead of a straight blade, the Ripple Blade is a wavy blade that was made to cut ripple veggies (right).
This unusual blade was brought to me by Jami Miller. Jami came to me with this blade in late 1996 along with some other choice blade selections. I said "So Jami, this blade is awesome, what do I do with it?" She just looked at me, shrugged her shoulders and said "I don't know... but you'll figure something out with it!"
I ordered them and started giving them to everyone I knew hoping
they would come up with something to do with the blade!
A couple of months later, I was again trying to imitate abalone. I had been trying to get this one for a very long time - about 10 years! I cut off the end of the cane to see what the slice looked like, and again I didn't like what I saw.
Well, I just couldn't take it any more, and proceeded to get frustrated and
very frankly, quite agitated. I took the package of ripple blades and proceeded to hack apart yet another abalone cane. I took the ripple out and thought "what the heck" and cut into the face of the block. Then I turned it 90 degrees and cut into the side. And when I did, lo and behold, there it was... a perfect sheet of abalone!! I just sat there in awe!
And to think, out of anger and frustration, and not cutting into the block the
proper way, a beautiful imitative technique was born.
I later taught this technique in several workshops to a great response. Word got around. I went to Ravensdale in '98 and Emy Fukajima came to me and said "So, tell me about this ripple blade you have, Marie." I showed Emy a couple of ways to use the blade, and when I looked up from demoing, there were about 30 people standing around! Someone said "How much are those things?" I said $2.00. I had been giving the blades away for quite some time, and had never sold very many, well... needless to say, I sold more in 15 minutes than I had sold since I ordered them!
Another truly incredible happened there at Ravensdale. Others artists, having access to the ripple blade, came up with many other techniques using the blade. For example, the Cross Cut Technique by Mindy from Texas. It was also discovered that you could cut into canes that you don't like very much and come up with beautiful things out of something that would have ended in the scrap pile. Since then, my motto has become "If you don't like it, ripple it!"
Ripple Blade Effect - Cutting a Cane Lengthwise
Page 2 is just a CLICK away! And filled with more Wonders!