Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Silver jewellery making course week 1

I have been excited for weeks about my jewellery making course and last night I finally got to go on it.

I loved every minute. There were 13 of us and most people were there just to learn a new and interesting skill. Me and another lady already made jewellery so did have some knowledge. Although most people hadn't had any done anything like it before, they did know roughly what they were letting themselves in for but one lady just kept saying " Oh I never expected to be doing this", she obviously was shocked to have use tools and a heat source, she seemed very nice, but I think she thought it was going to be a beading course.

Anyway, my tutor is a guy called Ian. He seemed quite nervous, and I wasn't really sure if he had taught before as he seemed a bit disorganised but he was obviously very knowledgable and also very keen, so I think we will keep him...

Our project for the night was to make a ring out of copper. We had to work out ring size, make a guide wire and then cut the copper out to size using a saw. We learned to make adjustments for size to allow for the width of the metal, how to mark the metal and how to make it easy to saw or 'pierce' it by using a gental but long action. As the metal had then become 'work hardened' we then had to anneal it, to make it pliable again. We then re-pierced the joint, cleaned it, shaped it, fluxed it, and soldered it. We learned about different types of solder, and how to heat metal to allow certain areas to relax and so the joint moves together rather than apart. We didn't pickle the ring but just had time to hammer it to harden the metal and shape it for a final look.

Of course these were not fantastic rings we made, much to some peoples disapointment but I feel for a first 2 hour session we learnt a lot. There was a lot of info about tools and techniques which was brilliant.

Next week I get to make a ring from my own design in Silver so I am off now to have fun in designing for next week.


  1. This makes me nostalgic, the first project that I ever did in Sixth form was to make a silver D section ring that we had to design outselves ... I still have it somewhere.
    It sounds like you're loving it! Do keep us updated, and get yourself a slow cooker too! Where's the course being taught?

  2. Oooh!! What a lot done in the first session. Shows how much you can achieve when being taught instead of muddling along yourself. Hmmm...I need to know how to heat metal so it relaxes together not apart!!

  3. That looks like fun, I've always wanted to do silvery jewellery course! :) x