Category Archives: Online Class/Workshops

My Craftsy Class is Live! And my JCK Review.

Well, my Craftsy class actually went live last week while I was on my way to the JCK show in Las Vegas. And right now you can sign up for 50% off the regular price. Just click on this link: Making the Most of Your Hydraulic Press. This link is good until Monday. And not only that, but you can use the same link to access hundreds of other classes that are all 50% off right now too. So this is a great time to enroll in any others that you think you  might be interested in. I have signed up for a few candy making and other cooking classes that looked like fun also. Craftsy has done a great job with their class line up and offerings. You can check out my last post to see some of the great projects presented in this class.

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Click here for 50% off all Craftsy Classes through Monday 6/13/16


 

JCK!!!!! Oh Goodness!

What an amazing time I had at JCK. I was working with the guys at Otto Frei and Pepetools. I had such a fun time hanging out with the best tools in the industry. I really want to be a high end tool snob…. I just wish my budget agreed with me.

This show started out hectic and crazy and stayed that way the entire time. I also had the great fortune of meeting some great people while I was there.

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This is set up day at the Otto Frei booth. You could hardly get to the booth the first day due to all of the crates and boxes everywhere.  But it ended up looking absolutely great.

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The first night I stayed on the 26th floor of the Luxor hotel in Las Vegas. My room was on the west facing side of the building. It was SOOOOO hot. So the next night I switched rooms to the 8th floor on the north side of the building. It was much more comfortable. But it was fun to stay at the Luxor.

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These are probably my favorite people at the show. Andrew Berry and Anie from JoolTool. We had a lot of laughs and fun together when we weren’t too hard at work.

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This is where I worked my magic and demonstrated some of the Pepetools products we brought with us. By the end of the show, I had jumprings, copper discs and washers coming out my ears.  I think I am set on those supplies for a little while.

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This gives you a little tiny glimpse of how big the show was, but not really even. This is looking down the isle from my booth, there are two more isles behind me in this photo. Then they are probably 3 rows deep, at least. Then when you get to the end of the wall there at the very far right of the photo, it turns left and goes on at least twice as long as this photo or more. And that was just one floor. There were three. WOW! I didn’t make it very far away from my booth though.

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My lunch partner – Andrew Berry

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Bill Fretz was demonstrating in our booth.

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Mark Nelson from Rio Grande – A VERY talented jeweler and teacher.

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Andrew Berry, Kate wold and myself.

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The owner of Bonny Doon – Phil Poirier

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Dinner after the last night of the JCK show. Just a handful of the great team we had working in the Otto Frei booth.

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Some more of the great Otto Frei team

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I showed amazing restraint and came home with just two small Fretz hammers. My bank account likes me very much.

Tool Time Tuesday – Workshop Review And Giveaway – Wire Weaving with Sarah Thompson

It isn’t often that I get to learn new techniques in a class setting. I don’t have the time or money to travel to workshops, there aren’t many taught here in Utah, and I have been so busy working on my book and videos that I rarely have time. Can I just say how much I love the day and age we live in? I can now sit in bed before I go to sleep and watch amazing people with amazing talent teach me all sorts of new things. And I do it on this ultra thin, ultra light “television” that I hold in my hands with tiny speakers with amazing sound quality plugged into my ears,  and the blankets pulled over my head so I don’t keep my husband awake. Did you ever imagine we would have this ability when you were a kid? If you were born after 1990, DON’T ANSWER!

It reminds me of when I got my first iPod Touch. We were thrilled that we could connect wirelessly to the internet and watch videos on YouTube, or even better, download a full length movie to entertain the kids. I am still waiting for the holographic set ups we used to see in “Vision of the Future” types of set ups at Disney land. We have 3D televisions, who knows, perhaps that is next and nobody will ever have to miss out of an amazing workshop again and we will be able to have our favorite artist or teacher right there at our shoulder in the workshop. Ahhhh, the dreams of the future.

Okay, back to what we are really here for. I have just spent the last couple of weeks reviewing Sarah Thompson’s Craftsy workshop.

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When I started making jewelry, it wasn’t by stringing beads. I started with wire. I have always loved wire. To this day, you will find quite a bit of wire work in my metalwork. I love the movement that it adds. I have done a few wire weaving things, but it never really clicked for me before I get into doing more metal work. But I have always adored the style of Sarah. (See more of her amazing work on her website: http://www.sarah-n-dippity.com/, Her Etsy Store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/sarahndippity or her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sarah-n-dippity/240358204033?ref=hl You may want to have some tissues ready to wipe the drool, her work is that amazing.

I have always wanted to do this style of work, but was intimidated by the amount of work involved, the meticulous nature of the tight weave and, well, I just never thought I could actually do it. So I was thrilled when I was approached and given the opportunity to evaluate her workshop.

In addition to well thought out projects, she uses large props while she teaches the weave fundamentals. And she does it in such a way that you remember it. That doesn’t mean to say that I never ran into a problem…. but that isn’t Sarah’s fault.

The Craftsy format is great too. You can view the video in Full Screen mode, watch at several different speeds, rewind when necessary, add notes and even ask the teacher questions as specific locations within the video. You can easily skip around the 7-part lesson for easy navigation and review.

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This is quite a detailed technique and the video is great to watch with TONS of close ups so you don’t get lost and can see exactly what Sarah is doing.

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Most of you know that I truly have ADD, I have since I was a child. I have a hard time sitting still while doing online workshops. One of the things I love about the Craftsy workshops is that I can change the speed. So most of the time, the first time I watch a workshop, I will put it on double speed. Then I can move to a slower speed if I need to see something more clearly or get a better understanding. Even though I did this with a good portion of this workshop, I found that even when I was watching at normal speed, Sarah was very engaging and easy to follow. She was very clear, well spoken and made certain every little detail was covered.

Want to see what I came up with? This is what I started with. I know, it is a bad cell phone photo…. I started with 18 gauge sterling silver for the base and wrapped with 28 gauge fine silver. I added a few 2 mm crystals for a bit of sparkle. The focal bead was made by my good Ohio friend Laura Critchfield.

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After finally getting everything attached and the clasp connected, I added a bit of LOS (Liver of Sulfur) patina, removing from the highlights with a bit of #0000 steel wool.

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I would highly recommend this workshop if you have ever wanted to try this technique. I just look at Sarah’s work and i get so inspired. I can’t wait to try more.

GIVEAWAY!!!!

Now for the exciting part. I have one free workshop to giveaway to one of my fabulous blog readers. I will make it really simple. Take a look at Sarah’s work and just leave a comment on the blog telling me your favorite piece, a link back to the page would be great too.

I will draw and announce the winner next Tuesday, May 5th.

If you don’t want to take your chance on not winning and would like to get started learning with Sarah, she has given my readers 50% off for the next two weeks (until midnight, Tuesday, May 12th.) Just use THIS LINK for 50% off her workshop.

Sarah, Thank you so much for the wonderful workshop. I learned quite a bit and I cannot wait to add more of this style into my work. And I am quite proud to say, I never broke a wire. 🙂 You are an excellent teacher and very talented artist.

Tool Time Tuesday – Mini Hydraulic Press Review

I have been home from Tucson for just over a week now, but I think I am finally just now getting back on track. It is crazy how long it takes to get back into the swing of things when you have made a trip, let alone an 11-day trip. Sadly, the trip was rather difficult on my girls, especially my youngest. So I don’t think I will do much traveling for a while. I am leaving in just a week and a half to teach at the retreat in Texas and I will be gone for 9 days there. But that one has been in the works for almost a year, so I can’t exactly cancel, not that I even remotely want to. LOL. Speaking of the retreat, there are still a couple of spaces open if you think you might like to join us. 🙂 It will be a great time with great instructors in a beautiful location with gourmet food (which is included in the price of the retreat.)  http://www.roadhousearts.com/spring-2015-jewelry-retreat/

My Giveaway is still open for the Pepetools Jump Ring Maker. So if you haven’t signed up yet, be sure to enter. http://eepurl.com/bbI3kj We are about 1/2 way to the goal for entries. So please enter and share it.

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Tucson was so much fun this year. I was able to share a room with some good friends from when I lived back east in Ohio. It was so good to spend some time with them again. I also got to meet many new friends. It was the most fun to meet some of you, my blog readers. It is always fun to put a face with a name. So thanks for stopping by to meet me and introducing yourselves. I am looking forward to next year already. I will have some really fun things to show you in the very near future. I got myself some VERY beautiful rocks, so be on the lookout for some eye candy. I also bought some copper sheet (at a discount due to being scratched and dinged a bit) and was able to get it cut into 6×6″ squares and will be destashing some of that very soon. In fact, I need to destash quite a bit. We have to put a new roof on our house and the bids are CRAZY for this big house of mine.

While I was in Tucson, I got to play with a lot of the new tools that Kevin Potter of Potter USA has come out with. And of course, I brought quite a few of them home so I can review them for you. That reminds me, I also have an online workshop I am reviewing and will be able to give one lucky winner a free subscription to the workshop. More details to come soon. Sometimes it is so hard to be me. *snicker*

One of the tools that I brought home was the Mini Hydraulic Press. This press is an 8-ton press that is meant for cutting pancake dies only. It will not do any kind of forming, it just doesn’t have the strength. In fact, the opening is too small for the bracelet pancake dies. So this is going to be for any of the other pancake dies that are 4″ or smaller. The nice thing about this press is that it has such a small foot print.

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The Image above gives you an idea about the size of this little machine. It is so much fun to use though. This is a great tool for anyone that is wanting to get into a production mode and just punch out shapes. If you want to do anything other than that, you would be wise to move up to the next larger size.

Want to learn more? Check out this short little video.

Finally Making Some New Pieces

As you know, I have really struggled lately (like for the past 4 years) to get back into the groove of things. Between having a baby (now 4 years old) and moving across the country a couple of times, setting up a new house and trying to figure out what I want to do, it has been awful. But This year…. This year is going to be different. We are now in a  routine. The house still has a LOT of projects and I need to figure out how to get organized, but I am finding I finally have some time to myself. I have set many new goals. Utah isn’t the easiest place to have a jewelry making business. The people here are just different and value things a bit differently. Let me just say, there is a reason why I can do what I do. I grew up here. I knew the mentality of Utah when it comes to being creative and “crafty.”

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I have been approached by several online places to offer my workshops and videos. For a while now I have wanted to have my own video subscription service on my website with projects and such. This year, all of that is going to happen. Dates  have already been set for multiple national teaching opportunities. I will be teaching in Tucson at the Gem show next month. In March I will be teaching in the San Antonio/Austin area. Then in July, I will be teaching in Las Vegas. I am so thrilled to be “getting back to it.”

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The other day my husband came home from work and I left the kids in his charge and retreated to the studio. He came in and asked what I was doing. I told him that I was tired of not creating and listening to the awful enemies in my head. So I figured that if I just came in the studio and forced myself to create something, then perhaps my creative muse would awaken and I could get back to “me.” The Me that used to sit and just pull out a stone or two and create. When I was that “ME” things just came together. That is where I am going to get back to. I am excited to get back to ME. This should be a fun year. Want to see what I have done so far? They aren’t perfect but I am sure pleased with them. It is a fabulous start.

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I am also really excited that this week a good friend of mine is coming in from California to help me get the layout of my book going. I am  hoping to have the first volume of my book out in just the next couple of months. We will see how it all goes. I may be even further behind than I think. Then again, I may be further ahead than I think. Cross your fingers that things go well. 🙂

 

 

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Next week I may be a bit quiet as we get our nose to the grind stone and really push to get everything going.

I have been going through my studio and found that I have a lot of things I don’t use. This includes tools and beads and such. So in an effort to raise money for the costs associated with  publishing my book, and hopefully getting a few things in Tucson, I will be holding a destash. I haven’t figured out how I am going to run it yet, but I need to get some things cleared out. I just don’t use some of this stuff and it might as well go to someone who can use it.

But in the meantime, I am so excited to be back. Thanks everyone for the encouragement and support.MelissaMuir-YOJ2015-Week1

 

Happy Thanksgiving – A new video workshop

Today has been a sad one for my family. My little brother, who has been my buddy since moving back to Utah, has moved to Texas. He left this morning after a breakfast here at my house. We celebrated our Thanksgiving a day early yesterday. It has been so much fun to get to know him as an adult. He is 7 1/2 years younger than me. He was only 12 or so when I got married, 16 years old when I had my first child and just 19 years old when I moved away. Getting to know him as an adult has been so much fun. He has made living here in Utah a real adventure. He is my hiking, running, biking and shooting buddy. I am so excited for his new job adventure. But selfishly, I am really heartbroken at losing my buddy.

I hope you and your family are having a happier Thanksgiving. 🙂

Today is kind of a big day for me. 8 years ago today I opened my online store and made it official that I was in business for myself. It was truly the beginning of my jewelry making journey. I NEVER DREAMED it would go as far as it has. I have learned so much. I had never been considered a creative person and this has been quite a challenge for me. I have made many friends along the way. This week I hit a couple of milestones. Of course, the first is having 8 years of this fun job. Second, I hit over 1,000 “fans” on my Facebook page. And, if I can ever get it done and posted, I will have 75 videos on my Youtube channel. I will be doing a give away this week to celebrate, so be sure to watch for my email. 🙂

Next week I am teaming up with Craftcast for a video workshop using my swage block. I have been working hard on it and I am so excited. There will be four projects. It doesn’t matter if you can’t make it to the original broadcast because it is being recorded and will be available to you FOREVER! You can watch anywhere, anytime. And Craftcast is running a 20% off deal right now until Tuesday. Just use coupon code: harvest2014 during checkout and save on all your video purchases, including my workshop.

Here is the listing: https://www.craftcast.com/classes/learn-make-lily-pendant-and-earrings-melissa-muir

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Moving… Retreat… Workshops…

Let me just start by saying that there certainly is never a dull moment in my life. Those of you that are long time readers of my blog know that already. I often joke that my life is so crazy that you just can’t make this stuff up.

Well, we have a timeline for our move. However, stranger things have happened, so we will just have to see how it all plays out. Last week my husband went to Utah to hang out with my little brother. While he was there, he took the opportunity to meet with our realtor and look at houses. Our plan has been that he would start his new job on March 1st (or thereabouts) and the girls and I would stay here in Washington until June and they were finished with school. We also said, in the unlikely case that we found a house, we might move sooner. Well, wouldn’t you know it? He found a house. It is a great one and the studio spaces (yes, plural) are fantastic. I will start out inside and then once we get the detached garage plumbed, heated and cooled, I can move out there. Here is what I am starting with… So excited! Eventually this room will become a family room, so I am going to finish it with that in mind.
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I think my wall of hammers might look good on the wall next to the fireplace.
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I would like to install a Kitchenette type of set up along this wall with a sink and counter top for working on projects such as etching, patina application, wire wrapping, etc. I will probably put my bit table there in the nook by the window on the left.
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I honestly don’t know how big this room is. I haven’t seen the house yet. I will be flying out next week to attend the inspection and see it in person.
The house itself has great bones and quality construction. The other elements inside?…. Well, let’s just say I am going to be VERY busy for a couple of years with various projects. So, when do we move? During spring break, the first week of April, also Easter weekend. OH. MY. GOODNESS!!!! Do you know what that means? Only 7 1/2 weeks left. You know, I could swear I just wrote this message…. Oh wait, that’s right, I DID. Almost exactly one year ago.
But this time, I am not renting a house. I am going straight to a purchase and I am not moving again for at least 6 years. If he hates his job, too bad. LOL. Of course we also feel more comfortable buying without renting as we are already pretty familiar with the area.

So at any rate, I guess, Let the studio packing begin… again.


Pacific Northwest Metal Retreat

A good friend of mine, Francesca Watson, and I are hosting a retreat of jewelry artists. It will be held in beautiful Trout Lake, Washington. We have rented a rather larger house from September 9 – September 15.

Registration opened yesterday and it is already just over 1/2 way sold out. The retreat is going to be so much fun. I was really excited about it being only about an hour away, but now it will about 14 hours away. Oh well. But I am excited that I know I will be returning to Washington. Hopefully I will get some really good hikes in at that time.

Would you like to join us? Please check out the information. But don’t hesitate too long or there won’t be any spaces left.

Workshops

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Just a reminder that enrollment has begun in my Basic Soldering Online Workshop. Class begins February 15 and ends April 15.

Learn how to cut your own jumprings, one at a time or hundreds. Learn the basics of your soldering set up. I will introduce you to a butane torch, essential tools and chemicals. Once we have gone through the basics, there are 6 projects for you to hone your skills. Learn how to solder copper with silver solder and without having a silver seam show on the finished piece. I even share my secret of how to make perfect swirls. We play with alcohol inks to add interest to textured pieces. Learn the secretes of soldering silver onto copper and not having the silver solder flow all over your copper piece.

The entire workshop is only $130. Or you can take each individual project for only $30.

Work at your own pace and ask questions along the way. I have a flickr and Yahoo group set up so that we can easily communicate.

View more information about the projects: www.MelissaMuir.com/workshops

Tool Time Tuesday – Anticlastic Bracelet Tutorial

Hello everyone. It has been a while. It seems I say that more and more. I have all the intentions on sitting down and writing a post, posting or filming a video or even working on jewelry and it just doesn’t seem to go as planned. So I am just trying to go with the flow of things. Thanks for your patience.

Basic Soldering Online Workshop

First off, I am running my Basic Soldering Online Workshop again. Many people indicated that the fall was a bad time and asked if I would run it again after the first of the year. So I am. In addition, you can choose to take the entire workshop, or just specific projects. I will have a yahoo group and Flickr group again so that you will have access to me through those means as well as email.

View more information about the projects: www.MelissaMuir.com/workshops

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Tool Time Tuesday

I did finally get a video edited that I filmed a couple of weeks ago. though. So for today’s Tool Time Tuesday, I am presenting a video tutorial to make an anticlastic bracelet with the hydraulic press. Kevin Potter of Potter USA, has come out with some great bracelet blanking dies. There are three different sizes. I am loving them because they make working on bracelets so much faster.
I will be listing the bracelet blanks (in copper) for sale in my shop next week if anyone is interested in buying the blank but don’t have the resources to get the press set up.
In the video, I show how to use the blanking die with both the larger press and the new smaller bolt together press. There are also some considerations that need to be made with the smaller opening and smaller platen size.
Enjoy. As always, please let me know if you have any questions.

The Press and press tools can be purchased at www.PotterUSA.com

And the winner is…..

Lisa from Lucid Moon Studio.

I put all the comments into a spreadsheet (minus duplicates and responses) and then used Random.org to get the random number 16 and Lisa was sitting right at that spot. Congratulations Lisa! I look forward to seeing you in class.
Thank you all so much for the feedback. I certainly felt the love.
A lot of you asked about tube setting, well, I have provided a video on how to do a simple tube setting. You can find it here:
Some of you also asked about Butane torches. Well, you can also check out my video on the three butane torches that are used here in my studio:
And here is one on piercing that you might find helpful:
And my thoughts on the Knew Concepts Saw:
Another on my thoughts about the Saw from Kevin Potter:
I have a few other things that I am working on, including a tutorial for using the hydraulic press and jewelers saw, and maybe even some etching. We will have to see how it all plays out. Last night I sat down with my jewelers saw and got to work. It was so nice. I will post about that in a little bit. But for now, I am going to go and take my girls out for a “girls night.”
Thanks again for all the feedback, compliments, comments and ideas and suggestions.

Who wants to take my online class? For Free?

I am a bit late on this post. My online class has been up and running for just over one full week. Things seem to be running smoothly. I am still adding little bits here and there as questions come up, but all in all, I think it is successful. 

As promised, I said I would offer a scholarship to one lucky person. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post and tell me what things you really want to learn. Yes, I am fishing for ideas. Ideas for new classes. Ideas for Tool Time Tuesday. Ideas for me to help improve my own skills. Ideas to help get me out of this depressing rut. This will also help me see if anyone is reading my blog anymore. I haven’t received comments for a long time now. Are you still out there? I am sorry for the Captcha crap when you enter comments. I have tried and tried to disable it, but am unable to do. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate ANY feedback I get. I will admit, it is very discouraging when there is only silence. So let me know what you think….. please. 
So if you would like the opportunity to take my current online workshop – Basic Soldering, be sure to leave your comment. I will announce the winner on Friday, October 19th. Even if you are already enrolled, be sure to enter. Your tuition will be refunded if you win. 

So what else is new? 

I have been busy, but I don’t seem to really have anything to show for it. I think that is the frustrating part. I am now a Board Member for the Creative Metal Arts Guild in Portland. Next month I will be revisiting my “old life,” When I present on web page design to the guild. That will be fun. I have been preparing and I have to admit, it is making me long to be in front of the computer classroom once again. I loved that career. 

Upcoming workshop

I have one opening left in the workshop I am teaching on Monday, October 22nd. It is my Lily Pendant and Cone Earrings class. I will be teaching people how to use my Swage Block. Of course, if you can’t make it and would like to learn, you can always purchase the step by step tutorial in my shop. If you are in the area and would like to attend, you can see more about the workshop on the Clear Skies Studios web page

What am I working on now?

Just this past week I have purchased the tools for working with Salt Water Etching. I really wanted to have a way that my girls could participate in some of my jewelry work. I am not comfortable with them working with the ferric chloride, especially since I no longer have good ventilation in my studio space (living room in the house we are renting.) So I got myself a battery charger and box of salt. I am currently playing with various resists to see which give me the best result. I am also thinking I will offer a mini online workshop on this (cost will only be about $15.) 
A friend of mine sent me a bunch of tools to demonstrate for Tool Time Tuesday. So I am working on getting some of those videos done up now and hope to present them over the next couple of weeks. I also have 2 more Featured Artists that I will be sharing with you over the next couple of weeks as well. 
The rains have started here in Vancouver, Washington. I was really bummed as I have really been enjoying my outdoor lifestyle including hiking and biking, especially the biking. Well, I have the best husband in the world. He purchased some fenders for my bike, so I wouldn’t get so muddy and wet from the water being flipped up from the tires. He also got me some long fingered and water resistant gloves so my fingers would stay a bit more warm. I also bought a rain resistant jacket to help keep me dry. I am much happier now knowing that I will still be able to ride when it isn’t raining too hard. In fact, I went out this morning and enjoyed the fog and colors of fall. 
Okay, that is enough for now. I will be back soon with a Tool Time Tuesday. In the meantime, be sure to enter your comment to be entered for the scholarship for this online course. Good luck! 

Registration is OPEN!

Wow, I am still a bit behind on getting the websites all set up, but it is happening. Thank you for the support of those that have signed up already. I am so excited to have you in this workshop. I am sure there will be kinks to work out in this workshop as it is my first one in this venue, but it sure is exciting. I am smiling wide as I type this with all the excitement I feel.

How to register
I have created a listing for the workshop in my store: http://www.kcjewelbox.com/Basic-Soldering-An-Online-Workshop-ewkshp-basic-soldering.htm

Once you register I will send you the login information needed for the classes. As I said, I am still working on everything right now, but I should have it all finished by this weekend. And of course, the workshop will begin on October 8th.

Tell me more:
Who is it for?
This workshop is geared toward beginning and intermediate jewelers. If you have never worked with a torch, this will be a great course to get you going. We will cover the tools used in soldering, correct techniques and safety procedures.

What isn’t covered?
Soldering is rarely the first step in jewelry making. Most people start by working with wire, beads, stamping sheet metal, etc. I will not be covering any of those techniques. It is strictly geared toward projects with soldering as the medium.

So what can you expect to learn in this workshop? 
Below, you will see the projects we will complete in this workshop. There are seven projects we will work through from beginning to end. Listed  below each photo you will see the core goals and techniques covered for each project.

How does it work?
When you sign up for the workshop, you are not just getting access to the videos. You are getting access to me as your mentor and instructor. I have created an online classroom incorporating a Yahoo group and Flickr group where we will be able to converse and share photos, questions and answers and more.

Each project is made up of multiple videos. I have kept the videos shorter to help with download and streaming capabilities. Each video is filmed in HD and should be fairly high quality so you can see what is going on. The videos will be available starting on October 8th and through December 8th. The files will not be downloaded to your computer, but rather from a central server location and streamed to you. You can watch the video as often as you would like. If you have seen any of my YouTube videos you will already know that I am very thorough, and this workshop is no different.

What equipment do I need?
A list of tools required is listed on the workshop page and below. You can use any number of torches, but for this workshop I will be using a Jumbo Max butane torch. I have torches and some of the other necessary tools available for purchase in my online store. Workshop participants will receive 10% off tool and material orders. Use the coupon code: solderingWorkshop12

What is the cost?
The workshop is US$130.00. That is only $18.57 per project. You can pay by credit card through my website using PayPal. You do not need to have a PayPal account to use this function. I will also take a check or money order. Please be aware that access will not be granted to the course until the check has cleared if you choose this option.

What are the projects?
Let’s take a look at those now! In each case I list the materials used int he project pictured. You do not need to have the EXACT materials. Be creative and make the project your own.

Making Jumprings

Jump rings are a big part of this workshop. In the first section we will cover the tools used as well as various ways to cut your own jump rings in all sorts of shapes.

Silver Chain Bracelet

silverLinkBracelet


Even though this project is done in silver, you can use other metals such as copper or brass. The steps are going to be exactly the same.

  • Close your rings properly
  • Solder and assemble the chain – without soldering the links to one another
  • Reshape rings to add a different look
  • Create a custom hook

Materials:

  • 18 gauge wire – 4 – 6 feet

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
  • Mandrels for shaping rings
  • Jewelers saw
  • Saw blades (5/0)
  • Jump ring maker (optional)
  • Blade lubricant (CutLube, BurLife, Bees Wax, etc)
  • Tumbler or Brass brush


copperPostEarrings


Ever wonder how to make a pair of post style earrings? What gauge of wire do you use? How long do you make them? Well, this project will answer of all those questions.

Materials:

  • 2 – 5mm ID Jumprings
  • Copper or silver shapes (Copper washers shown)
  • 1″ – 20 gauge round sterling wire
  • 1 pair – ear nuts

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
  • Texturing hammer(s) or tools
  • Sharpie, steel wool, or sandpaper
  • Center punch and hammer
  • Tumbler or Brass brush
WindChimeEarrings


The
wind chime earrings are named for their dainty and whimsical movement.
Learn how to place your solder so that you are left with clean seams and
no solder blobs. You will also learn how to make your wires straight and ball up the ends of a wire. In addition, we will be making our own ear wires.

Materials:

  • 2 – 3mm ID Jumprings
  • 2 – 4mm ID Jumprings
  • Copper or silver shapes (Copper washers shown)
  • 16″ – 20 gauge round sterling wire
  • 6″ – 24 gauge round fine silver

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
ForgedSwirlPendant


Ever want to know how I make such great looking open swirls and have such
great dimension to my pieces? Well, this course will show you exactly
how I do it. You may not be able to do them perfectly at first, after all, it took me 6 months of working on them before I got it myself, but you will at least know how I do it.

Materials:

  • 3 – 5mm ID Jumprings
  • 12″ – 16 gauge round sterling silver wire

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
  • Planishing hammer(s) or other smooth faced hammer
CoperSilverBracelet


One
of the most difficult things to do is solder an item on top of a
textured backplate without having solder flowing everywhere. Learn the
tricks to having a good looking finished piece.

 

Materials:

  • 4 – Copper Washers
  • 1 focal bracelet blank
  • 2″ pattern wire strip
  • 2 – side bracelet blanks
  • 2″ 16 gauge round sterling wire
  • 6 – 4mm ID jump rings

** Some materials will be available to purchase for this project **

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
  • Texturing hammer(s) or other tools
Coloredbracelet


Solder
a copper bracelet with silver solder and show no silver solder seams.
Take it one step further and add color with alcohol inks. This is a very fun project with TONS of potential and room for creativity.
** Textured discs are available in my shop. **

Materials:

  • 20 – 4mm ID Jumprings
  • 5 – 9 – Textured copper discs (various sizes)
  • Alcohol inks
  • Clear spray lacquer
  • 2″ – 16 gauge round copper wire

Tools

  • Soldering set up (See below)
  • Planishing hammer(s) or other smooth faced hammer
  • Steel wool (I use #0000 – but any will do)
SolderingVariations


Class project is on the lower right. The others are variations to give you an idea of what can be done with the same techniques.

Soldering set up:
All projects in this course use the following equipment

  • Butane torch*
  • Soldering pick*
  • Soldering board or surface*
  • Insulated cross locking tweezers*
  • Fine tip tweezers*
  • Pickle (I use the swimming pool chemical Ph- or Ph Down)
  • Pickle pot (I use a small crock pot)
  • Neutralizing solution and  bowl
  • Flux* (I use both paste and liquid, but one or the other should be just fine)
  • Flux brush (I use a kids paint brush)
  • Hard sheet solder cut into small pieces
  • Quench bowl

*Items are available in my shop for purchase

Other tools:

  • Round nose pliers
  • Flat nose pliers (flat face – no grooves)
  • Chain nose pliers (flat face – no grooves)
  • Flush cutters
  • Sharpies
  • Ruler