Spend three full days designing richly detailed jewelry wraps that are perfect for layering assorted treasured findings, beads, and ribbons around either your neck or wrist; if made long enough, these pieces will look wonderful wrapped around the waist as well.
I’ll be teaching a very wide variety of jewelry techniques for this brand new workshop: wire wrapping (hooks/clasps, charm connections, link fabrication, attachment of leather/ribbon to metal clasps, bead tip formation for dangling pearls from chain), letter stamping into metal, drilling, patina aging for brass, copper and silver, embroidery stitching for leather, my “cocoon wrap” bead using lace or ribbon with wire, incorporation of vintage laces and ribbons into jewelry design, bead wire crimping, and pearl/gemstone bead knotting onto silk cord.
The rest of the time we will have relaxed sessions sharing layering ideas as we hammer, stitch, dangle, attach, thread, and knot to our hearts’ content. I’ll share with you how my quirky brain works when forming a story with bits and pieces of jewelry findings, and discuss how a few words and images can create a narrative piece of wearable art. i can’t think of a better environment for this special time than the beloved studio of valley ridge, surrounded by soft and beautiful rolling farmland and the songs of swallows nesting in the eaves of the porch. Prepare to head home with a full heart and a mind overflowing with inspiration from creating amongst like-minded kindred spirits.
Instructor’s Note: If making as a gift, try to discreetly measure width of wrist before leaving home….finished length of thrice-wrapped bracelet is 22”, give or take a bit of length (based on my own wrist); I love to keep going with five or six layered wraps around the wrist.
About the Instructor
Nina has been a professional jewelry designer since 1987, a mixed media artist for as long as she can remember (thinking here of a little clay mushroom “ensemble” that was created in perhaps the third grade, for starters), and has been teaching mixed media/jewelry workshops, both in the United States and worldwide, since 2000. Her artwork is featured in many books and magazines, and has been sold in multiple boutiques and museum shops across the world. Ever changing jewelry designs can be found in her etsy shop. Nina’s blog of six years provides a wonderful outlet for writing and sharing with readers all the intricate beauties of the natural world that surrounds her in the mountains of western north Carolina.
Studio and Material Fee
Material fee covers serrated leather needle, a length of silk cord with its own thin needle, a small length of vintage 1940’s copper chain from my studio collection, patina solutions for brass, copper and silver (will not affect other metals, please keep this in mind), a couple of 2” x ½” brass lengths for hammering words, one bronze swivel clasp (you will need to bring more clasps – lobster is best – for additional bracelet/necklace wraps), a bit of beading wire with crimp beads, a small square of polishing paper and miscellaneous studio supplies.
Students should bring the following supplies:
- small package of slender leather cord (available from Michael’s, Tandy’s, or Etsy sellers, as well as Walmart and other craft stores); I used around five or six feet for one bracelet, so get enough for several; (alternately, you could cut lengths of leather yourself from large piece). remember to bring assorted ribbon, pearls and beads, vintage findings, lace, buttons, and additional leather bits (any width) to incorporate into your pieces. several beads with larger holes are wonderful for threading onto leather as well.
- scissors, embroidery needle, embroidery floss
- small hammering block, if you have one (mandatory for hammering designs and letters into metal); available from volcanoarts.biz for around 16.00 – I’ll bring mine to share, as well as bracelet mandrel.
- small hammer
- masking tape
- ink pad, any type or color
- cutting mat with inch measurements on it
- bent needle-nosed pliers, round needle-nosed pliers, and wire snips (smaller version for jewelry craft work); a very reasonably priced set is available from volcanoarts.biz; do not bring huge tools from your garage, they will be too awkward to use!
- emory board for filing corners and edges
- at least ten feet of 20 gauge wire; copper will be MUCH cheaper to experiment with, so you will be happy if you bring some copper for practicing wire wrapping. I prefer round, dead soft sterling silver (the choice is yours), and purchase it from www.riogrande.com. Another good source, without a minimum requirement, is www.firemountaingems.com. If you have finer gauge wire, any metal, bring that too (will be used for wrapping “cocoon” beads and leather)
- small length of large-link chain, around 2” for each wrap, for “adjustable” end of wrapped design.
- if you have a 1/8” metal alphabet stamp set, please bring to share with others. I’ll bring my own as well, and will bring my 2 rawhide mallets for everyone to use. I’ll also bring a mandrel for bending metal strips into curved shape for wrist/neck.
No optional supplies recommended.