Metal work doesn't have to involve expensive tools or a studio. Often metal smiths will tell you that it can be done in a small space such as a kitchen or even dining table. So this Metalsmithing at Home Craftsy class by renowned instructor, Kate Richbourg aims to show how it can truly be done in your home.
Kate Richbourg is one of the best metal work instructors out there. She teaches efficiently, concisely and clearly - all with such a fun, relaxed manner that students are not at all intimidated. The most striking thing about this well taught class is the 4 carefully designed projects, each of which introduces techniques and tool use in a progressive manner.
I also like the Craftsy format very much as learners are able to watch either the entire lesson or 30 second repeats again and again to make sure they understand key points. This instructor is also very responsive with answers on the platform.
Meeting the instructor.
She covers all the basic tools including her simple soldering set up in a baking tray. Kate's explanations on how to use micro torches are the best I have ever seen.
Also covered are cutting tools (shears and the jeweler's saw), hole punchers, hammers and files. Other tools are introduced in the lessons as appropriate which is a good thing. It is easy to get overwhelmed otherwise.
This is all about the common jewelry metals to use. As with wire work, Kate's advice is sound - work with copper before you go on to precious metals!
She also explains the use and types of paste solder. Paste solder has flux so is easier to handle rather than working with flux and little metal solder pieces separately.
Safety and set up points are covered. She has a good suggestion for a check list before you start.
She never mentioned aprons. But Kate clearly shows how useful these can be as she wore a number of them in different colors which coordinated with her outfits! They are not just for protection but can also hold tools etc. Hers were custom made by her friend.
This lesson is the first part of how to make awesome earrings. The techniques include how to use the jewelry saw to cut out sheet metal, punch holes and solder the decorative round elements.
This lesson demonstrates the soldering parts of the earrings project including the spiral ear wire part. Kate does not use round nose pliers to create the wire spiral - but the chain nose pliers for really tight spirals.
The stacking ring project was outstanding. A series of 3 thick wire rings were created using round and square wire. The approach for each type of wire was different. A clear lesson in how to anneal (soften) the thick wire used.
Little punched out metal discs and granulated round balls were used to decorate these simple rings. They look great worn together.
This simple bracelet lesson is a more challenging one due to the care needed in planning and measuring out the design. The bangle design includes a hinge which consists of pierced holes and fold over tabs and a tension clasp.
Metal shears make quick work of cutting out the bracelet blanks. I particularly like Kate's reassurance that if measurements are a bit off, it is possible to correct many of those imprecise areas with filing!!
This lesson is about how to make a tube setting for a crystal/gemstone. The other techniques such as cutting out metal pieces and soldering them together are once again used in the creation of the flowers and leaves.
This tube setting technique is so different from that of metal clay work although the end result is the same. It's about how to make sure the gem stays put. The tools are not difficult to use. However, the lesson shows clearly how setting burs and the tube setting tool should be used correctly.
This is just a recap of her key teaching points.
Bonus ear wire making class using a pen. I've used this common technique (before I got my large bail forming pliers) but Kate's nifty tip makes it much, much easier. Really clever solution on how to hold the wire as you curve it around the pen!!
I've reviewed a number of Kate Richbourg's books and other Craftsy class before (see links at the bottom). She never disappoints. Her books are excellent to have as resources as they are well laid out with lots of information. But watching her in this class really simplifies the learning process and goes a long way in removing the fear factor for those who are intimidated by torch work.
This class is particularly good for beginners as she lays out the foundation of how to do metal work at home. The first 2 projects alone - the earrings and the rings - are enough to get you started on those crucial techniques. The bangle and the tube set crystal flower projects are more for intermediate and advanced metal work people but they are there for beginners to strive for.
Highly recommended for those wanting to get into metal work.
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If you want a chance to win a free access to Kate's Metalsmithing at Home Craftsy class (and ask her any question), please make a comment below. Make sure you leave contact info below if you do not have an online shop or blog. The class is currently on sale too.
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This giveaway is international.
Extra entries if you become or are a blog subscriber or follower etc. If you also do shout outs about this giveaway, those will count as additional entries too! Please say so in the comments. (The exception is Facebook - just like/comment on the giveaway status there!!)
It ends in a week's time at 6 pm EST Monday, January 23, 2017. I will pick the winner randomly and announce the results as soon as possible after. So be sure to leave a contact email if you don't have an online link or make sure you come back and check! Otherwise I will redraw in a week. Good luck!
I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.
Before You Go:
- Free Micro Torch Basics Online Class
- Book Review : Simple Soldering
- Book Review : Metalsmithing Made Easy
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