Have you ever wondered how jewelry is made?
Have you ever wanted to try your hand at it?
Acquiring all the tools and materials is a big plunge to take, so it totally makes sense to try it first! Well, I have a great opportunity for you! If you’re in the Alpharetta area, I have an opportunity for you to try it out, and I’ll be your teacher! Alpharetta Creative Studios JUST opened and they are awesome! They have a killer gallery (you can find a unique selection of my jewelry there on display), delicious and healthy food at their café, tons of sweet class offerings (including pottery, painting, weaving…), and even a state-of-the-art sports facility! Sign up for my e-mails ( bottom of this page) and I’ll let you know as soon as jewelry classes are listed, but check out what they already have going on and don’t miss the grand opening on May 18, 2018!!!
Now, I’d like to give you a behind the scenes tour of some of my favorite and most sentimental tools… you know… to get you excited about using some yourself!
Here we go!
When I started making Mettle it was at David Douglas Diamonds and Jewelry in Marietta, GA. Doug Meadows, the store owner, let me pick out the tools for me to work with from a collection he had. Doug is a third generation jeweler; he has inherited a few tools along the way. That was 8 ½ years ago. Today, I still have a few of those tools on my bench and the coolest part about it is that some of them belonged to my boyfriend’s grandfathers. That’s right, both of his grandfathers made fine jewelry and years before I even knew Malachi, I put his grandfathers’ tools to work on my bench. The day I discovered whose initials were carved into my hammers and files, I had already been dating Malachi for about a year. Life is wildly beautiful. I love thinking about the connection between what they once made, and what I am making. The same hammer continues to hammer, in different hands, for different hands, and the pieces it has touched are all over! (This is also an excellent reason to buy good tools! Good tools LAST!)
I made Mettle at David Douglas for 7 years (to the day, actually!) and on my 5th year anniversary, I was gifted a custom, one of a kind, sterling silver loupe with a diamond in it. David Douglas Diamonds and Jewelry don’t do small… It’s such a simple, but often overlooked tool. All jewelers need a loupe, and most wear it around they’re neck. (A loupe is a magnifier so we can look closely at jewelry.) So, if we’re jewelers and we wear a tool like a piece of jewelry, it might as well BE a piece of jewelry, right?! I absolutely love functional jewelry. You may have seen the flask that is a bangle bracelet, a tiny harmonica necklace that actually works, pencil necklaces… If you have a tool that you use every day, why not go ahead and make it a piece of jewelry? It’ll always be at your fingertips, ha!
(Here’s an idea! if you have something you want to see about me making into a wearable tool for you, throw me a text or email!)
A few months after I left David Douglas Diamonds, this past fall; Doug started working on the bench again and discovered a pair of gloves he could wear while polishing that would protect his hands- from dirt and heat! (Polishing jewelry is an incredibly dirty job! And the metal gets HOT quickly from the friction.) Instead of just telling me about it, he gifted me a pair of the gloves! If you’ve ever polished jewelry on a buffer, you know it takes a good deal of effort and harsh soap to attempt to clean your hands, but they still end up looking like you’re a car mechanic. I’m grateful for people sharing the things they’ve discovered that make life easier. Collaboration and brainstorming are some of the best treasures in life! It’s like creative genius squared!
As I got settled into my studio after David Douglas Diamonds, I realized I had more space and could REALLY stretch my legs. I thought, wouldn’t it be perfect to have a desk right behind my jewelry bench?! Yes, yes it would. The problem with that is that the desk would need to be the same height I keep my chair at when I’m at my bench, and there were a couple other dimensions that were critical. Basically, I what I needed wasn’t your typical desk. I’m not exaggerating… THAT EVENING Malachi drove up to my studio with a desk his dad had built for just that purpose and no longer needed. How amazing is that? I didn’t even have time to worry about how this thing would come into my life. Call it what you will, the Law of Attraction, an answer to my prayers, manifesting, creating my ideal life, but you can’t deny the beauty and complexity of answered prayers! I’ve learned that if you want something, picture it, dream it, pray for it, and know that God’s got you covered. Forget the “how,” and figure out the “WHAT!” Besides, isn’t figuring out the WHAT the fun part?
I love my studio space! From the old bench I bought on E-bay almost a decade ago, to the awesome modifications my cousin did to my stump to make forging easy and comfortable for me, to the beautiful artwork hanging on my walls inspiring and encouraging me!
Tools make all the difference. Tools make jewelry possible! There are so many easy things I can teach you in an afternoon that you can use to make stunning jewelry! If you’re itching to get your hands on some tools and create some killer jewelry for yourself and/or people you love, give me your e-mail and I will make sure to let you know as soon as my classes are available. I’ll be posting what you can make soon, so you can see what you will be learning.
I may have made you jewelry before, wouldn’t it be even cooler if we made jewelry together!!??!?
Sign up and we can get to work!