Friday, August 8, 2014

Wire Chains, Jump Rings & Clasps,
Oh my!

a sampling of the work created by students

Well, I'm happy to report that we had a very productive class this past week-end at CCAE! We spent the week-end working with wire, annealed steel wire to be exact. It was messy business, but we all survived!

It's always exciting to have ultra-newbies as well as more experienced students working side by side. We all have something new to learn from one another. I learned a new trick from a student for forming a ball on the end of a wire which totally made my day!

bangles and bracelets for mom and her daughter!

Since it was a smaller class I was able to allow each student to explore the forms and techniques that they found most interesting. Some students chose to work on their forging and forming techniques while others chose to work towards completed pieces.

beautifully forged forms with opposing planes

As you can see in the photo below, there was a lot of activity!
Forged squiggles were the most popular form, but clasps and riveted hoops and bangles were a close second. One student chose to tube rivet wire links together while another created a pair of brass earrings and a unique pendant using a vintage domino whose numbers have a special meaning.

just a sampling of the many things made in class

If you read my earlier post, you'll know that I shared a quote with each of my students. I gave them each a different quote and asked them to read it out loud to their fellow students. It was pretty funny, but I think it helped them to realize that it's expected that we'll make mistakes while we're learning something new. Kudos to my students for doing an amazing job!

I'll leave you with this quote from the wire master himself...

"To an engineer, good enough means perfect. 
With an artist, there's no such thing as perfect."
~ Alexander Calder

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Friday, August 1, 2014

Words of Wisdom

I'm teaching a new class this week-end at CCAE called
Wire Chains, Clasps & Jump Rings, Oh my!

I love working with wire and have been bending and twisting it since 1994. For most of my students, however, this will be their first foray into the wonderful world of wire.

If there's one thing I've learned from teaching it's that adults do not like to make mistakes. I'm not too crazy about them myself, but have found that they're an essential part of learning. 

I'm a sucker for a good inspirational quote.
I have quite a few "fortunes" taped to my monitor that make me smile when I'm having a bad day. After a quick search on-line I found a few 
quotes to share with my class tomorrow... 

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
~ Albert Einstein

"I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that don't work."
~ Thomas A. Edison

"We learn from failure, not from success!"
~ Bram Stoker, Dracula

"Have no fear of perfection - you'll never reach it."
~ Salvador Dali

"Forget about it!"
~ Donnie Brasco

"Don't Panic"
~ The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

"Some of the worst mistakes in my life were haircuts."
~ Jim Morrison

Okay, that last one isn't inspirational, but it is funny!

Don't be afraid to make mistakes. 
Sometimes it's the only way to make progress.

Do you have a favorite quote to share?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Fall Classes @CCAE

The new catalog is here!

Check out all of the amazing classes available at CCAE!

My jewelry and metals classes start on page 71.
Learn How to Craft A Cookie Cutter
Master the Jewelers Saw
Say It In Metal
Simply Riveting

There's lots happening at the Cambridge Center for Adult Ed.
See what's new at 42!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Fold Forming @CCAE

Finished pieces crafted by a metals newbie!

I'm just recovering from a whirl wind fold forming week-end at the Cambridge Center for Adult Ed. It was a wonderful class full of creative, productive students and was a joy to teach, 
I am, however, pooped!

I'd like to share some of the beautiful work that was created. 


The work shown above and below was created by students that had never worked with metal before. I was simply blown away!

  Pretty impressive, wouldn't you say?
I had one younger student who most certainly held her own. 
She really is quite talented. 

And there were a couple of students that are familiar with  metals and took the class to learn a new technique. They had a lot of fun and weren't afraid to play!

Take inspiration from these talented folks and look into taking a class via continuing ed and learn something new!

Images & Text © re-maker
All rights reserved

Wednesday, June 25, 2014


If I had a nickel for every time someone asked me 
why we would move from Newburyport to Worcester... 
I'd have a lot of nickels! 

We've been here for almost a year and find more things to love about Worcester every day. I've often thought about sharing some of the awesomeness we've found in our new community, but since we're still unpacking it's been easy to put it off. Until, that is, today.

Today, I went to Crust. Crust Artisan Bakeshop, to be exact. Although hunting for a place to park was not very awesome, I persevered and was rewarded with this supremely delicious multi-seeded muli-grain bread and croissants. Simply dee-lish!

Fortunately, I was wise enough to take a quick pic before my son discovered Crust was in the house because there is nary a croissant and only half a loaf remaining.

Since Crust opens at 7am I'll be sure to get there early for 
the best selection and an easier place to park!

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Friday, May 9, 2014

Art Jewelry Magazine~
Tin Challenge!

Well, the wait is finally over! 

In March, Art Jewelry Magazine challenged ten subscribers to create at least one piece of jewelry from an assortment of beautiful tins. We had three weeks to design, construct and then send the finished pieces back to AJM to be photographed for the reveal.

It was great fun designing and constructing the three pieces I sent to AJM. The toughest part was choosing from the deliciously colored Harney & Sons tea tins...

I decided to send three pieces to AJM. 
Since tin can't stand the heat of soldering I chose to construct all of my pieces using cold connections.

The first is an adjustable Lemon Swirl ring. It's made using two colors of tin and scrap nickel sheet. It was punched and domed and connected using a mini brass bolt and stainless nut.

The second piece is a Poppy! brooch. This piece was the most fun to make! The stem is cut from a vintage silver plated children's fork. The flower and leaf are punched, domed and cut from tin and reinforced by scrap nickel sheet and connected using a mini stainless nut and bolt which has been filed down to create the tin stem.

The third piece is a Dolci Cuoricini or sweet little heart. The heart is formed using a hydraulic press and is then cut and riveted to a scrap of roller pinter brass sheet. It hangs from gunmetal steel chain and a handmade gunmetal steel hook.

As soon as I receive the pieces back from AJM I'll be listing them in my shop. Until then, I'll be working on similar designs. If you're interested just send me a note!

All rights reserved.

Friday, January 17, 2014

From Hear to Ear
@The Peabody Essex Museum

CĂ©leste Boursier-Mougenot, “From Here to Ear” installation for Nantes Creation Estuary, 2009. (Courtesy Peabody Essex Museum via Franck Perry/AFP/Newscom)