Sunday, April 21, 2013

New Approach School for Jewelers Visit

Chain Repairs done with a Mini Torch.

Fear not Readers!
Contrary to popular belief I have not been stricken with, all 4 of you who wondered what happened to these terrific postings can rest easy. I am alive with my memory intact and have once again taken my saw in hand to "make some stuff".

While I was away from the blog-o-sphere I took a trip to Nashville, TN. Franklin - just south west of Music City - to be specific. I went to New Approach School for Jewelers Bench Comprehensive Class
Blaine Lewis and his wife Jill run the school and they do a terrific job of it too! 
Hospitable, friendly and focused are all adjectives to describe my experience with NASJ. 
I found them willing and able to answer questions (sometimes more than once) and willing to go above and beyond for the needs of their students.

While in the week long course we did the following:
Learned about safety and tools - including torches.
Adjusted (or learned) sawing techniques.
Assembled commercially manufactured "wedding" rings and mountings to shanks.
Repaired manufactured chains.
Covered finishing and polishing.

In this 5 day class we covered the BASICS of what a working bench jeweler (think your local Ma + Pop jeweler in a downtown area  NOT mall jewelry store) would do to earn a living. Since my background is in large metalworking (blacksmithing /welding) and "art jewelry" type stuff  a lot of what we did was new to me.

It was a great class and I plan to return for the 12 course in the future!
If you are thinking about attending this school I encourage it wholeheartedly. 
Now I am back to my daily work as a librarian and am busy filling up my Etsy shops!

Please feel free to inquire with any questions + Thanks for Reading!

Assembled practice mounting.

Start and finish of an up sizing on a cast ring.

Sawing and Filing Practice in Brass.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Mark your Calendars - Pop Up Shop Next Week!

 Mark Your Calendars! Pop Up Shop Coming Soon!

WHAT -  Pop Up Shop featuring vintage goods, mid century furniture, industrial storage + tools and books.
Also featuring - handcrafted modern jewelry by Amanda Thon Metalsmith.
This is a great chance to support small businesses during the holidays + scoop up some really unique items.

WHERE - 305 S. Washington Ave Titusville, Florida
Located just off the main drag (US 1)  in downtown Titusville under the giant HARDWARE Store sign.
Terri's building was built in 1915 she and her husband Jon have tastefully restored it to its current state. 
If you are into building restoration / renovation it is one of the coolest I've seen!  

WHEN -  4 - 9 pm Friday Nov. 30 + 10 - 6  Saturday Dec. 1, 2012

*** As a bonus there is also Food Truck Wars going on downtown during this weekend too! So if you need a little excitement and live in Central Florida head on over! 
We'd love to see you there!

Terr's extensive stapler collection - all available for purchase!

Super neat floor to ceiling shelving - original to shop.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Cool Sculpture made by the Dutch folks at Hoogte Twee Architecten seen in action HERE.

Reminds me of THIS:

Some to be made "home for my files" out of PVC pipes. This will sit nicely on my workbench and be made from materials currently lying dormant on the side of my house. Check out the How To here!

Perhaps once I make a small cube I'll make a larger one the whole neighborhood can enjoy...
(Somehow I seriously doubt they'd be into it...sadly!)

Thanks for Reading!
(Next Post - Freshly made metal things).

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Tool Makers

Checkout the useful lifetime tools created by these fella in Latvia at Neeman Tools
These would make awesome Christmas gifts! 

"It is a tragedy of the first magnitude that millions of people have ceased to use their hands as hands. Nature has bestowed upon us this great gift which is our hands. If the craze for machinery methods continues, it is highly likely that a time will come when we shall be so incapacitated and weak that we shall begin to curse ourselves for having forgotten the use of the living machines given to us by God."
Mahathma Ghandi

Friday, October 5, 2012

Nice Work - David Neale Goldsmith

For all you makers of stuff out there I'll be posting a new series a few times a month called Nice Work.
It will feature people who make work (or things) I like -the featured person could be a product designer, fine artist - or a fine craft maker....anyone who makes an object!

Aluminum Comb - David Neale
Methods of Construction - sawing, carving (I assume some filing?)

This month it happens to be David Neale - an Australian goldsmith who has a pretty interesting life story (so far). He has a nice interview up currently which you can read here - on the site Visual Diary. 

After a life threatening lung injury he had to change his methods of making things in order to keep being a goldsmith. His thoughtful and funny BLOG is one I read weekly - as I am always interested to see what kind of things he is up to. He also is very specific about the processes he uses to make his work - and gives readers a peek into his studio when he has a cool project going or new tool acquisition.

Snake Ring - David Neale
Methods of Construction - sawing
His work is available for PURCHASE on his website. I'm a fan and think anyone interested in making should pop on over to his sites and give it a look! Your eyes and brain will not be sorry!

Thanks for reading!

Monday, September 17, 2012

I concur.

Wait! What if your objective is groping? Guess you've got it covered then...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Bands I like - Shovels & Rope

When life get me down - or I'm stuck in doing everything BUT what I'd actually LIKE to be doing I try to make my life a little better with music. My latest find is the band Shovels & Rope -  a duo who not only make some outstanding music - but who also seem very relate-able.

 In an age of pop superstars and pictures that have been Photoshopped to hell and back relatability often gets overlooked. Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent comprise the band Shovels & Rope. They are a married couple who go on the road travelling and playing together. While they both are musically talented solo - I think they really shine as a duo! 

Support these guys so they can make us more music!
I promptly added them to my collection and think you should do them same!