Fresh Baked Designs

Adventures in jewelry making

Returning to Class April 10, 2013

Filed under: Archives — Fresh Baked Designs @ 11:40 am
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I had so much fun in the last session of Adult School that I signed up again.

This time it’s all earrings…my favorite things to make.

And learning all sorts skills and techniques…some review and some new.

Last night, oh my!

 I have to say that there are only a few jewelry making areas that I swore I’d never get into.

Polymer clay, chain maille, and seed beading.

Well, last year I tried poly clay and loved it for certain things I was making.

Granted, I’m only doing some basic cookie cutter and paint kinds of beads.

Last night in class, Pam presented us with trays of sterling jump rings in four different sizes

and told us to grab some baggies and start counting out some.

My gut started churning…oh, no, Chain Maille, I thought.

Do I even have the eye sight, let alone patience for this??

The earrings we were going to tackle used the tapered Byzantine weave.

Or as some call it, Idiot’s Delight.  I’d buy the idiot’s part.

Supplies:  sterling open jump rings

24    22 g. (0.6mm)

24    20 g.  (0.8mm)

24     18 g. (1.0mm)

4       16 g.  (1.3mm)

This is where my appreciation for Pam as a teacher soared even higher…

she was so patient, calm, and encouraging with all of us.

Bringing our little messes to her to correct.

Then sending us back to work with an “atta girl”.

While I readily admit that these earrings have interesting detail in the weave

and a wonderfully fluid movement, this is a ONE OF A KIND for me!

Byzantine Earrings

Byzantine 3

Glad I gave it a try, but don’t need to do that again.  I’ll leave it to the experts.

Speaking of which…David Plumlee.

If you’d like to see some fabulous chain maille, he’s one of the best around…

visit David Chain Jewelry .



8 Responses to “Returning to Class”

  1. Diane Says:

    That’s great that you are returning to class! I love reading about what you are doing there. Although I have to admit I am a bit jealous as there is no where around here to take any type of jewelry class other than simple stringing at a bead shop.

    • Hello, Diane! There are pluses to living in a big city/county, like this Adult Ed class, for sure. Don’t know if you’ve explored this, but I have really taken to youtube as a teaching resource. I learned how wrap briolette beads, make wire wrapped rings…If you’d like to see videos of certain techniques, you might try it. I just typed in
      “wire wrapped ring tutorial”. Adding tutorial to your search is the key here. I could sit with the materials in front of my computer. Also, stop and rewind parts when needed.
      There’s some really good stuff on there to up your jewelry making repertoire.

  2. Just wanted to say how much I enjoy your emails. I am a glass artist (lampworking) and own my own shop, Sandpiper Gallery ( Your designs are fantastic! I think I’d probably feel the same way about the chain maille (sp?), and how do you keep that clean?! 🙂

    • Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting, Nancy. I peaked at your site and must say that the lovely Sandpiper Gallery with your wonderful lamp work is a place I’d be spending some time. And not sure yet how I’ll keep the nooks and crannies clean on those earrings, except regular time spent in the jewelry tumbler. I may just oxidized them and be done with it!

  3. I enjoy your blog very much, and just nominated you to the Liebster Blog Award, you can find out more about it here:
    Keep enjoying the jewellery making!

    • Wow, Gunilla! I’m pleasantly shocked by your gesture with the nomination and will definitely read more about this award very soon. Thank you so very much. Thanks for following along on my jewelry adventures.

  4. I’m right there along with you regarding chainmail! But congratulations on giving it a go! Trying different techniques definitely helps us understand and appreciate the effort involved.

    • Yes! I meant to say in my post that I have tremendous admiration for those who practice and excel in this difficult jewelry technique. And absolutely have a new appreciation for their persistence and skill at manipulating all those jump rings!

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