As I only have very basic knowledge of working with metal such as texturing and drilling, I thought I should brush up on my skills. First jewellery course I have ever done, it was all day so very intense. Im absolutely knackered, but managed to make a copper ring, and In the middle of another. It was exciting but quite technical too, I can’t believe how nervous I was, it must have be the college thing, has anyone else gone back to college for any courses and how did you find it? I’ve got 2 more days to complete the course I hope I can keep up!
I have attended pottery classes - didn’t get on with the wheel
Also did a silk painting course which I loved and produced quite a few pieces of art, cushions and the like.
Not done anymore for a long time, the silk frame is gathering dust in our spare room. Gary does keep reminding me but the mojo has passed me by…
There is a wire - as in chicken wire - sculpting course near here which I would love a go at, might get around to booking on that this summer Do love the brain pain from learning something new.
Lucky you, I’m very jealous. I tried to look for a silversmithing course near me and couldn’t find anything so had to learn from YouTube!. Today I blew my solder off having to use a a bigger torch on a larger copper pendant!
I went back to college a few years ago to do an art and design foundation course (older than the next oldest ‘mature student’ on that course by about 15 years…), and then ended up doing a whole degree which I just finished last summer. By the time I got to the end I was really glad it was the end, but I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. Its taking me a little while to recover mind, it takes such a huge chunk out of your life…
yes my brain is trying to remember everything, sort of chattering away in the background at the moment, lucky I wrote some notes as it’s all a bit jumbled at the moment - too much excitement and nerves! I need a glass to wind down!
Im glad I didn’t go fro a long course, they hold silversmithing ones, but they are much longer. This one is a beginner course - I dread to think what the next levels are like Im happy to stay with the basics for a while, whilst I build up my confidence. What kind of set up have you got for the torch, I have a really basic blow torch in a beading kit I bought years ago but never got round to starting, oops!, is it easy to set up in doors , as in the workshop at this course,they have lots of stuff, I’d never be able to buy all that equipment .
wow! good on you, I can’t imagine that happening to me - I have a very bad track record for completeing things when I was younger. Im prob the second ‘mature’ student in this group, the rest seem quite young . Hopefully I will complete this one, only 2 more days nothing compared to 3 years
It’s quite different being a ‘mature student’, maybe you’ll get a taste for it? That’s why I did the foundation first, that was part time and relatively cheap and I wanted to see whether I could cope with being a student again… enjoy your course!
I use a small butane jewellers torch I got from Cooksons, was about £20, really easy to use and fine indoors. However because I use a lot of copper sometimes the issue is copper acts like a huge heat sink. So to anneal metal for my mill I couldn’t get it hot enough.
I’m now working on some large engraved pendants with small soldered bezels and the little torch just couldn’t get medium solder to flow, if it was all silver it would have been fine. Husband has leant me what can only be described as a flame thrower which works off of a calor gas type bottle. It does the job but it’s unwieldy and I wouldn’t want to use it in the house. I’m lucky enough to have a studio.
Have heard of people using two of the small torches, but I’m not that ambidextrous! Personally I’d start with a small torch and that may be fine depending on what you wanted to do.
Hope you enjoy your course
Thank goodness the scariest item in our reportoire is a press to get our fingers caught in
hee hee I don’t think I will be needing the flame thrower just yet! sonds scary your lucky you have a studio, I was thinking about re-arranging my shed so I have an area for sawing, soldering and annealing, which is what I learned yesterday. Going to need a few bits of equipment though such as heatproof bricks and mats etc, Im hoping the hothead torch from a beading kit I have never used will be enough to get me started , im just going to dig it out shortly , but I think I need a hose and definitely some gas ,I’ve been reading up !! - and have a re-think of the shed. It’s amazing what one day can do to inspire you, by week 3 of the course, I’ll be bankrupt
Congrats to doing your course , I love doing courses in new things. Lino cutting, indigo dying , batik,textile jewellery, watercolour painting, life drawing… the list goes on .
If you ever need jewellery tips you can always ask , lots of basic tools and things you can get much cheaper from a builders merchant - you can buy sheets of fire proof board at the builders cheaply and make a fire proof corner , so that you feel much safer when soldering.
I would say if you can have a separate space for metal work it’s a good idea because it is just so messy…or maybe that’s just in my hands! Be warned tool addiction is serious, not only for your bank balance, but you find yourself getting excited about stuff like new saws and disc cutters, friends start avoiding you because you start talking about different cuts of files…it’s a slippery slope!
If you want some inspiration check out Nancy LT Hamilton on YouTube, she is fantastic and has a great sense of humour too
thanks Deborah, I didn’t think of getting fire proof board, that’s a great idea. I can only hope to make jewellery as gorgeous as yours!
Emma,yes I have a (tiny!!)corner in mind, my nice seaside themed shed is going to turn into a proper workshed! yes it’s a very messy business. I already have tool addiction!! I love tools , im getting really excited as I’ve ordered myself some decent files and a bench pin so I can start sawing and preparing for soldering - people kind of know about me and my tool/craft addiction , at this rate though I’ll end up owning more tools than my other half!
I forgot to say how lovely your enamelled jewellery is, im too obsessed with this course at the moment!
Again it’s something I wish I’d gone on a course to learn as it’s not easy on my own. I’ve made a lot of mistakes that were probably avoidable! Really I just want to make pictures on metal, but I have to learn the basics first
hello! im back, I got totally immersed in the new course, everything else just fell by the wayside It was a only a 3 week course of 3 whole days, I learned quite a lot in those 3 days, quite surprising how much you pickup. It’s given me the confidence to set my own space up which should be soon once my workbench arrives. It won’t be anything fancy, but it’s start. I have accumulated quite a lot of new tools in the past 2 weeks hee hee, I have total tool addiction
It’s a slippery slope, you’ll be sniffing tool oil next!
Can’t wait to see what you start making
hee hee, it certainly is. I’ve got my eye on many more tools!! the pressures on, I’ve got to actually make something now I’ve been practicing my sawing technique which im getting pretty good at, it’s quite a zenlike thing to do - very satisfying. Im waiting for my bench to arrive so I can set up for soldering, might be another week or so . Think it will take quite some time to get up to your standard though
Don’t be daft, I’ve only been doing metalwork since March and leave a trail of broken saw blades in my wake! You should see the volume in my scraps box! Agree about the Zen of sawing, I love it, very theraputic