Designing this class was a group project with Sarah Tector (S. Tector Metals), Sonya Coulson Rook (Metamorphosis) and myself. We started with a list of materials and techniques and then worked from that point. Designing jewelry for classes in a group is fun. It's chatty, and there are lots of jokes, and we make references in rapid-fire patter. At one point this was referred to as 'yoga after-class wear' and 'kinda cowgirl' and 'kinda beach' and 'perfect with a hand-knit scarf' which makes no sense at all. Imagine a cowgirl wearing this, with a scarf, to the beach after her yoga class.
Wait, maybe that works...
Sarah and Sonya are both trained metalsmiths who produce a jewelry line. They have top-notch skills. Me, I learned to solder in the dark ages, I got an art ed degree, then made jewelry myself (but not silversmith work.) I don't have the assembly skills they have, I know just enough to be dangerous (and to say 'hmm, that's too hard, let's try a jump ring!' when it applies!) I'm the Creative Director/Art Teacher of the bunch; I tone them down if it gets too difficult or uses tools that aren't in our basic tool kit.
We want each Metals Bootcamp class to be an exposure to a technique or skill that can be done at home. Here in Raleigh, NC, there are about ten places where you can take a metalsmithing class in a $100,000 studio with every possible tool at your disposal. That's nice, but it's like learning to make a cake at a restaurant kitchen and then going home to your microwave. No baked goods for you!
What tools do we use in our Metals Bootcamp classes?
A butane torch
A soldering surface
A saw frame
Saw blades (plus cut lube!)
A bench pin with V-slot
A chasing hammer, or rawhide or riveting hammer (or all three!)
A bench block
Chain nose pliers, round nose pliers, wire cutters
A tiny crock pot filled with Sparex or Citric Acid pickle
maybe we also use riveting tools, parallel pliers, metal hole punches, dapping blocks, or other 'oddball' tools, but the basic 8 in that list are all under $200 at our store, and could get you started metalsmithing. Tomorrow.
So, wanna take a class? Check it out, here.
Oh, and this is a detail of the BACK of the Montford necklace...gotta love that Sarah! She snuck in some snazzy sawing.