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.

31 thoughts on “Tool Time Tuesday – Workshop Review And Giveaway – Wire Weaving with Sarah Thompson

  1. Karen

    I love the item that looks like peacock feathers. Not sure of its name, maybe Heavenly Treasure?
    Thanks for sharing this website. Her work is stunning!!

    Reply
  2. Bob Hodgin

    Melissa,
    You do a great job on your tool time videos and open them every time I see a new one. We live in the sticks of Western North Carolina and about the same situation as Utah. There are a few workshops but they are usually too expensive for my wife and I. We do have William Holland Lapidary School, about 4 hours from us, a great deal for all kinds of workshops. Food, lodging and workshop for about $370 a week. If you ever teach anything on the East coast, please let us know.
    Thanks,
    Bob Hodgin

    Reply
  3. Joyce Lucht

    Sarah’s work really is amazing! On her website, I couldn’t choose just one piece. My favs are her gorgeous earrings with the pink stones and the pendant with the beautiful green glass flower bead. Sarah’s really lovely weaving let the bead be the star.

    Joyce

    Reply
  4. Cindy A

    I could not pick out just one piece cause I love them all have been following Sarah for a long time even wrote at one time and asked if she had any tutorials. Just waiting to afford her class

    Reply
  5. Polly Anna Randol

    Beautiful work by Sarah and beautiful work by you too! It’s hard to imagine how to so beautifully control all those little bits or wire to make something so stunning. My favorite piece by Sarah is the Amethyst necklace on her Etsy site. Here’s the ink: https://www.etsy.com/listing/230504493/amethyst-necklace-fine-silver-jewelry?ref=shop_home_active_1. I love the way she combined fine and thick and hammered wire and to make it even more stunning is the absolutely wonderful clasp she did for it. Amazing work!

    Reply
  6. Beatriz

    The class looks great! I particularly love woven pieces that really focus on the metal work, not the stones, so the woven wave bracelet is my favourite. I like the contrast between the woven and forged elements.

    Reply
  7. Karen Thomas

    I have admired Sarah’s work for a long time since seeing her Facebook page. So when I actually had a chance to take her Craftsy class on-line, I jumped at the chance. Being new to working with wire, I love the opportunity to go back to the class
    Via my IPad and re-watch the proper way to do a particular task. Sarah makes it very easy to understand and with the large prop her husband made for her, it’s very clear what the wrapping steps are. I will continue to admire her work and I have to her that there needs to be a LOVE button instead of a LIKE button!

    Reply
    1. Melissa Muir Post author

      Thank you Rhonda, It certainly wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. Not saying it was easy, but I also don’t think I would consider it HARD. 🙂 Good luck.

      Reply
  8. Pat

    Thank you for the opportunity. My favorite Sarah piece is the one with the opal triangle in the middle. It is absolutely beautiful, as is all of her art.

    Thx,
    Pat

    Reply
  9. Christy Phelps

    Funny you mention this now. You know I just jumped into lampwork and went forward with hot metal. Never did wire, but I have been intrigued with this style and bought a few tutorials. This kind of Eastern European wire work combines architectural elements with the sinuous feel of Art Nouveau, my two favorite things. I particularly like this pair of earrings: https://www.etsy.com/listing/230332686/swarovski-crystal-earrings-fine-silver?ref=shop_home_active_5

    Thanks for the opportunity.

    Reply
  10. Sarah Thompson

    Thank you everyone for participating!!! I have been so excited to finally be able to share my joy in wire weaving with others. Melissa your bracelet turned out so beautiful, better than my free-form bracelet. I struggle with free form and would much prefer doing symmetry. I really like how you spiraled the woven strip just a touch before before going over the lampwork bead.

    Reply
  11. Paula

    Hi Melissa,

    I, like you, started out doing wire work. I have always had an appreciation for the beautiful work artist like Sarah and others do. But I found really quickly I’m not patient enough to do that type of work. That was why I moved on to metalsmithing. However, Sarah has some techniques I can see myself incorporating into other types of jewelry and am really interested in learning some of those. I will always be grateful to you for your videos because I am now setup with an electric hydraylic press from Potter and have all kinds of dies and can’t wait to get started. I am so looking forward to your book. I am hoping in it you talk about what appears to be fold forming then pressing it into a silouette die. That is such a beautiful combination. I would love one day to take one of your classes, but now that I am the caregiver for my X husband, I have no idea how to free up time to do it since he has to be with me 24 hours a day. May be since I am going to work with him to help him learn to use the press for a hobby, he could also take the class too if it turns out he is able to. Anyhow, I really do like Sarah’s earrings because of the flow she gets and since they are not so involved, that would be something I would love to one day do. Well, thank you again for being the amazing person you are because that is why you are such a wonderful instructor, your apparent love of sharing.

    Reply
  12. Terri G

    Oh my gosh! When I saw the name Sarah Thompson, it didn’t register for a minute. Then I realized it was sarahndippity! I’ve been admiring her work on Etsy for years. I love all of her designs, but particulary her rings. Especially the ones with Ethiopian opals. They’ve all been sold, so I can’t post a link.
    In any case, her work is stunning and so unique.

    Melissa, I also live in Utah – southern. And there are no classes, workshops, or even any bead stores here. Thank goodness for the Internet!

    Reply
  13. cathy Bradford

    Both of you are so talented!!!
    There is not just one piece I could pick
    If I had to, I love all your work. I’m fairly new with metal smithing and want to learn it all! The first time a lady showed me a roll of wire that she used for her jewelry….I just couldn’t believe that flimsy wire could actually hold a shape….wire and metal are still a mystery to me and I just love what you can do to it!!! What beauty!!!!

    Reply
  14. Mary Govaars

    I really love the Fine Silver Tribal Earrings-Dust in the Wind. All of her jewelry is beautiful, it is hard to pick out one favorite!

    Reply
  15. KimMarie P

    I have seen her work for awhile, my friends even sending me images saying, “you should learn to do this!” There are so many pieces that are outstanding. The silver and garnet bracelet on Facebook is Wow! Gerlinde is another with a pale blue stone.

    Reply

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