Workshop Descriptions:

Alison teaches a variety of workshops designed to enhance skills and present challenges, including: Mixing it Up; milling, reuse and metal fabrication, Engineering Your Way Out, Custom Clasps, Tubing Technical, Hydraulic Press Essentials, Chain Making, Increasing Soldering Skills, and Private lessons, out of her studio and at art centers, schools, and other artist studios throughout the country. These workshops can be combined for 3 and 5 day classes. If you would like to arrange for a workshop in your area or have an idea for one, please contact her.

 

 


Mixing it up: milling, reuse and metal fabrication-NEW

Learn how to completely hand fabricate your jewelry in Sterling silver with gold accents. Students prepare a charcoal block and melt down gold shot to make an ingot. Roll out your gold for a variety of purposes including; Bezel, ear wire and design accents to create a Bezel set stone Ring and Hoop Earrings. Learn to solder gold accents to your silver jewelry. Students begin with 18k gold shot and sterling silver flat wide wire. The base of the ring and earrings is flat sterling wire that you will modify for project needs including rolling, cutting and measuring. The skills learned here allow you to reuse scrap and mill your own metals…which comes in handy when you start a project late on a Friday night and there’s no time for to order what you need.  For the purpose of this class we’ll be using clean material. 

 


Engineering Your Way Out

Develop your ability to solve jewelry fabrication problems and learn solutions to common design and fabrication challenges. Design and create a hinged bracelet or necklace. Students create a “map” of their project, learn to make irregular shaped bezel settings for unusually shaped stones, add hinges and where to place them for irregular shapes and using stainless steel wire, solder sterling terminations to the steel, add a hook clasp and complete your project. 

Example of class project

Example of class project

Students are guided through the process along with discussion, case studies and actual examples of problems as well as their solutions. We will explore the interplay of movement and functionality in jewelry and the approach from the wearers point of view (ie: does it sit funny on the neck, is it too heavy, does the pendant flop over).The real benefit to this class is learning how to engineer your jewelry projects as you discover solutions to common design and fabrication challenges. Step-by-step handouts are supplied along with samples. Basic fabrication and soldering required.

Note: as a 4 or 5 day workshop the clasp is an irregular "key" clasp. 



Tubing Technical: An Exploration in Fabrication

Tubing Technical Class Project

Tubing Technical Class Project

Tubing definition: a hollow form open at both ends, not necessarily round. Explore the myriad ways to make and use tubing. Join, bend, connect, latch, hang, set faceted trillion stones and hinge using tubing. Students will make a hinged pendant and set a trillion stone in a telescoped tube setting hanging from a bail made from bent tubing. A step-by-step handout with images and text is supplied. Basic fabrication and soldering required.








Custom Clasps 

Close up of Box clasp...not in the shape of a box. 

Close up of Box clasp...not in the shape of a box. 

Create clasps that are safe, secure and truly one-of-a-kind. Come up with unique solutions to complete your designs. Learn and make both the key and box clasp. We will discuss customizing terminals and findings to unify your art jewelry and explore a variety of solutions to link your custom-made clasp to the rest of your piece. Students are expected to go with their own design style in order to explore new ideas in finishing their jewelry. Step-by-step handouts are provided for both clasps. Basic fabrication and soldering, required.

 

 

 


Hydraulic Press Essentials 

Student samples of acrylic matrix dies and hollow forms.

Student samples of acrylic matrix dies and hollow forms.

Learn how to use the Hydraulic Press. Create original dies, embossed plates and other uses with the leverage of 20 tons. Students will make at least one acrylic matrix die cut out from their own design, experiment with how the press works including; soldering two matrix die halves together to create a hollow form. We will explore a variety of uses with the matrix die such as roller printing, fold formed, etched and textured surfaces. Students will also learn to emboss and imprint metal with a variety of shapes using anything from washers and heavy gauge wire to mesh or found steel objects. Basic Fabrication and some soldering skills are useful. Please think of ideas for shapes (2x2 or smaller), these shapes will be made into hollow forms. Step-by-step handouts are supplied along with examples. Some basic metalsmithing/jewelry experience required.