Jewellery Making and Silversmithing Workshops in Twickenham
At the start of this year I took the plunge to teach jewellery making and silversmithing workshops in my little Twickenham garden studio. Since then, more than 50 people have come here to try something new, get creative and many took their new skills away and started new hobbies - how satisfying is that! My investment in having new windows put into my formally dingy workshop space, and cupboards to hide away the large amount of materials and tools I need for my work was energising for me personally as a space to work but also allowed me to open up the space to others. I thought I would share with you a little of what the workshops have been like, including some feedback from my guests, photos, and give you the feel of which one you might like if you are considering coming along to join me here in Twickenham for a workshop yourself (which I hope you will!). Whether you prefer Mindful Creativity or Energy and Alchemy learning something new and getting creative Can be hugely stimulating and therapeutic.
Beaded Jewellery Making Workshop - Mindful Creativity
The calmer of the two workshops, a group of creative (or soon to be) women came to learn the basics of beaded jewellery making here in my Twickenham garden studio. Relaxed, chatty, chilled and creative, the women sat around my table with my huge stash of colourful gemstone bead to hand, I added a few flowers to inspire, wraps and brownies for fuel. After a few demonstrations and more as the jewellery workshop and skills progressed the ladies all had the skills they need to make the most gorgeous necklaces, earrings and bracelets and we’re away in their own creative directions. This workshop is for you if you need some calm and mindful creativity and if you enjoy it, a hobby you can shove in a box and keep under the sofa - there is a kit included and list of places to buy materials for attendees so you can get going right away making jewellery for you and your friends - and perhaps beyond. For those of you who like a little energy and alchemy, read on....
Silversmithing Workshop - Making Stacking Rings - Energy and Alchemy
Silversmithing is a wonderful hobby, the alchemy of using heat to melt and form metal, creating one thing into another using physics with a dash of creative inspiration and magic - a mini big-bang right before your eyes. And the silver itself, so beautiful and versatile in how it can be finished, shiny, matte, textured, with shapes and symbols. There are a large number of stages to go through to create one piece which I show step by step, though this workshop really is suitable for anyone. Once you do things in the right order with the right tools, some perseverance, patience, good timing and sometimes a dash of bravery - you will create something unique and wonderful that will last forever. Instead of the gentle calm of the beaded jewellery making my workshop space was filled with the noise of hammers, files, blow torches breathing fire, and people walking about looking for the next tool they need. After what is usually a relatively long time making the first ring, my students got the hang of it, it all fell into place and they got going with the next and the next - its a case of its easy when you know how. Some people kept their designs simple and elegant, others were more adventurous using wider bands, adding impressions of stars, leaves, flowers, deeper textures and even adding silver balls. Some of the pieces made were symbolic, an ivy leaf garland to go next to a grandmothers ivy ring (the ivy long since worn off); simple textures to adorn rings already owned; reminders of loved ones, new rings to replace lost ones. It felt a bit like being a midwife, seeing a students design go though all the stages of making (there are many!) with some parts flowing with ease, some taking more patience or trial and error, supporting and giving tips until their beautiful piece of their conception was born in silver-ring form.
Some Words from Students:
This beginner's jewellery-making workshop was held in Kate's lovely oasis of a studio. Kate is an excellent teacher, imparting so much expertise about different techniques to make earrings, necklaces and bracelets with beads and wires, in a lovely welcoming, supportive atmosphere. And it was so heartening to create things which looked pretty good for first pieces and were definitely eminently wearable! Coupled with a super box of tools - and our creations - to take away, it was also excellent value for money. A lovely day out! Elizabeth
"Thank you so much for today, I was completely mesmerised with making the jewellery and learning the technique. It was such a good day and I keep looking at the beautiful jewellery I have made, so thank you!" Ruth
"I absolutely loved your workshop yesterday. To be able to sit with like minded people, learn a new skill and create amazing jewellery was, for me, the highlight of my year so far! I can’t wait to place an order for some silver wire so I can get creative with my collection of assorted beads and bits at home." Lucy
There is more feedback and information on the workshops page here
Student Pictures and Creations:
I also taught some silver earrings workshops and will arrange some more with pendants, and a more ‘intermediate’ workshop for those who have already learned the basics and want to go on to more complex designs. A group of friends came and made earrings with me, you can read more on Becks blog here.
Are there any other workshops you recommend? How did you find it?
To book a workshop more dates will be added shortly but in the meantime you can sign up to be kept informed of new dates via the newsletter. I hope to see you soon!
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