Tag Archives: LJS

Adventures in wax carving – Week 2!

So last week I posted about week 1 of my 5 week Wax Carving Evening Class at the London Jewellery School.  We have now had our second week of our class and it is fair to say that we were all getting into the swing of things and powering forward with our designs!  Some of us made some changes to our designs this week as we had had the chance to think about our pieces and how we would realise them in wax!

So it was pretty much straight to business this week!  We all worked hard shaping the wax and scraping away and refining the waxes.  It was a very quiet class as we were all concentrating so hard!

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Everybody hard at work on their designs! 

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Our lovely tutor, Sophie Arnott, putting us through our paces 🙂

My own design is coming on.  I pretty much have the organic shape carved out and am just refining the surface with sandpaper and steel wool to make sure it is nice and smooth as any flaws in the wax will be picked up in silver (and are much harder to sort out once cast!).  I will waft my piece under some heat to remove any little curls of wax remaining so it is completely nice and smooth for casting.

Next week I will start burring out the underside of the ring to make the ring lighter (as it would be very heavy in solid silver, not to mention expensive to cast!) to make it nice and comfortable to wear using a ball burr in a pendant motor.  And I will hopefully make a start on my second design.

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My wax carved ring – almost finished 🙂 

I am really enjoying the course so far and although I still love fabricating pieces completely by hand from sheet metal, wire and tubing, I can see how this technique could be incorporated into my designs and collections.  Plus it is incredibly therapeutic peeling away layers of wax!

I can’t wait for week 3 and seeing some of the finished waxes of my fellow students!  Have a great week and will post pictures of how everyone is getting on next week!

 

Author: Karen Young

London Jewellery School Blog_Karen Young Bio

 

London Jewellery School Studio Warming

A few weeks back we had a ‘studio warming’ event to welcome visitors to our new studios in Hatton Garden. Tutor Anna Campbell was there doing a jewellery making demonstration and gives her take on the evening.

I always love the open studio events and the christmas party (keep your eye on the blog and our facebook page for details of the Christmas Party – coming soon – shhhh mark Tuesday 13th in your diaries!). It’s fun to chat to previous students and have the chance to introduce new students to the studios and the classes.

This year we were welcoming students to our new home in Hatton Garden. It’s great to be back in London’s famous jewellery quarter and we know that students are loving our new central location.

At our studio warming this year we had a lot going on including a sample sale run by tutor Annie Mason in aid of MacMillan. Every time we run a class the tutor makes a demonstration piece. This has led to us having quite a lot of class samples over the last seven years so it is great that we can sell these for a good cause – we raised £230 in total!   Thanks to all those who bought some jewellery on the night and supported our charity.

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Tutor Annie Mason doing a sterling job raising money for Macmillan.

We also had a display of samples for our next live TV show on Create and Craft TV. I will be demonstrating stone setting in metal clay torch fired techniques and will have three metal clay kits for sale, including instruction videos. Keep an eye on our facebook page for details of the show times.

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Water Casting samples

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Helen Walls pouring the metal into the water

The main event was our three free jewellery making demonstrations. Tutor Helen Walls demonstrated water casting, which is where silver is melted and poured quickly into water to create interesting shapes. This is always an organic process, you never know quite what you’re going to get! But that’s the joy of it.

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Tutors Anna Campbell and Michelle Leaver

Silver and enamelling tutor Michelle Leaver then demonstrated how to make stacked silver rings, a very popular and fun evening taster class.


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I then did a demonstration of using the new sterling silver Art Clay 950. I talked through the benefits of the new clay and my experiences with it. I then showed how I made the ring pictured above.

Thank you to all who came. We were very pleased at the turn out, the demo room was always full!

Author: Anna Campbell

LJG Guest Blogger - Anna Campbell of Campbell Hall Designs

Diploma in Creative Jewellery – An Alternative to a Degree in Jewellery Making

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It’s Summer time here in the UK and whilst the holidays are in full swing, we are busy getting ready to welcome our new Diploma Students in September for a year of fun, hard work and creativity!  We offer a number of different Diplomas and options here at the London Jewellery School, but our signature Diploma is our 1-Year Diploma in Creative Jewellery which is a great alternative to doing a degree in jewellery, as you can work flexibly around other commitments and work as you spend 1 day a week with us!

This comprehensive Diploma Course is fantastic, as it introduces you to a wide range of jewellery making techniques, both traditional and contemporary, and really helps you to find your jewellery making ‘voice’ and unique style.  The Course will take you from a beginner in jewellery making to a professional standard and focuses on combining a mixture of traditional jewellery skills such as silversmithing, stone setting, wax carving and enamel but is unique also in its focus on more contemporary methods and materials such as resin, perspex, metal clay, fashion jewellery and polymer clay.  Although, the focus is on mastering the technical skills and techniques, over the Course of the diploma you will also learn essential skills for starting and running your own jewellery brand including technical drawing, photographing your jewellery  and a jewellery business day focusing on branding, USP and all the legalities of running your own business.

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Diploma exhibition pieces by Maria Lampitelli, Julia D McKenzie, Maysooun Homsi Touban and Kemi Awokiyesi (in April 2016)

The Course runs over 3 terms of 12 weeks and Classes run 1 day per week with a maximum of 7 students per Class.  Each term, your work will be marked by an expert Tutor and constructive feedback will be given to ensure you are progressing and pushing yourself and your jewellery designs forwards.

We understand that the Diploma is an investment both in time and money, so, we offer 3 flexible payment plans to help you along the way.

We are proud of the fact that our Diploma Course changes the lives of our Students and opens them up to a world of techniques, friendships and experiences.

We have spoken to some our former Diploma Students about their Diploma experience and how they have gotten on since they graduated.  This week we talk to Zoe Porter of Zoe Porter Jewellery and next week we will be hearing from George Galula of GV Jewellery and Linski Kilcourse of Linskiloolar Jewellery!

So Zoe, tell us a bit about how you started your jewellery making journey and what ultimately made you decide to do a diploma with LJS?

I started taking night classes with an incredible Danish jeweller in Wellington to try something new and quickly fell in love with silversmithing. It was a hobby that only developed when I went travelling around Europe for a year and realised how much I missed it. That’s when I started looking into diplomas in Europe and the U.K. and The London Jewellery School offered exactly what I was looking for.

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Zoe Porter Jewellery – Walnut Pendant

What was your favourite part of the diploma?

Learning so many new techniques and processes was great but the work experience I did with Just Castings, Hatton Garden really opened my eyes to a heap of possibilities I hadn’t realised when working with both silver and gold.

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Zoe Porter Jewellery – Pineapple Cufflinks

What was the biggest challenge for you during the diploma?

I had only worked with silver, gold and stones before the diploma, so the mixed media pieces were something I had difficulty with at first. It was however during the design of my final piece that I tried my hand at woodcarving for the first time and really enjoyed it!

What difference has doing the diploma made to your jewellery skills, designs and/ or business?

There were processes I knew nothing about, such as wax carving, that now play an integral part in my design process but one of the most helpful (and simplest) things I learnt was how to recycle silver and gold and make my own wire and sheet metal.

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Zoe Porter Jewellery – Molten Ring

What would you say to students thinking about doing a diploma with the London Jewellery School?

Just do it! The amount you’ll learn and take home from the course is great. Take notes – more than you think – and sit down and practice.

Don’t be scared to make mistakes, you can always melt it down and start over.

Where next for Zoe Porter Jewellery?

I’ve just launched my website and the response has been great. As a certified Fair Trade Gold user I think it’s really important to educate people on where their gold and silver is coming from and I’m hoping to visit Fair Trade mines in Sotrami, Peru, and help raise awareness.

For now, I’m just enjoying myself, working mostly on commissions and loving designing and making a number of engagement rings. They’re really special and personal pieces to be trusted with.

How can we find out more about you (website, Facebook, instagram?)

I sell online via my newly launched website – www.zoeporter.co.nz and I post regularly on Facebook and Instagram.

Thanks Zoe – good luck with your business and we are so thrilled to have played a small part in your jewellery making journey!

Our Diploma Classes are quick to fill up, so book now to avoid disappointment. There is currently availability for September intake 2016. For more details on Course dates and how to enroll, please visit the London Jewellery School website www.londonjewelleryschool.co.uk or call 0203 176 0546.

And due to popular demand we have loaded up the 2017 January and September dates onto our website for those of you who like to plan ahead!

Until next time,

Happy Making! x

Top jewellery exhibitions and events in London!

London is a very inspiring place for jewellers and we are lucky to have some annual events and exhibitions that help get the creative juices flowing! Here are some recommended events to put in your diary!

 

  1.    Goldsmiths Fair

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Source: http://www.goldsmithsfair.co.uk/about-goldsmiths-fair/

 

The prestigious Goldsmiths Fair is held in September/October each year at the grand Goldsmiths hall at St Paul’s. This two-week extravaganza is not to be missed, as it is a dazzling display of 100’s of independent designer-makers in the world of silver, gold and precious jewellery.

Find out more here: http://www.thegoldsmiths.co.uk/exhibitions-promotions/goldsmiths%27-fair/

  1.    IJL, International Jewellery London

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Source: http://www.jewellerylondon.com/Archive/exhibiting/thenewvenue/

 

Held in early September, this giant scale exhibition at London’s Earls Court promises to inspire, as the place to discover the latest trends, source new and exciting products, network and attend the industry’s leading seminar programme. Great for buying supplies but beware of overspending when bringing your credit card!

Check it out at – http://www.jewellerylondon.com/

 

  1.    Dazzle

A free exhibition open to the public which is taking place this year at the OXO tower. The jewellers themselves range from graduates to established artists. They are not there all the time but this one is not to be missed… http://www.dazzle-exhibitions.com/

 

  1.    Collect

We’re already looking forward to Collect in February 2017, the UK fair for contemporary objects which includes jewellery.  Presented by the Craft Council and taking place at the Saachi Gallery it’s sure to be a well curated exhibition

http://www.craftscouncil.org.uk/what-we-do/collect

 

  1.    V&A

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Source: http://www.ejal.com/project.php?projNo=39&catNo=5&nextNo=0

 

The Victoria and Albert Museum in central London is hailed by many to be the greatest museum of art and design and when it comes to jewellery it never fails to disappoint. With a full range of permanent and often temporary jewellery exhibitions, inspiration is offered in abundance.

See what’s currently on here – http://www.vam.ac.uk/.

 

  1. Craft Central Open Studios

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Source: https://twitter.com/craftcentraluk

 

Craft Central is a pioneering not-for-profit organisation dedicated to building a strong future for craft and design. Every year they hold open studios where members of the public can meet the jewellery and craft designer makers in their studios and take a look at their latest collections. Three of our tutors have studios here so pop along to the open studios to say hello!

For full details of the next open studios event please see – http://www.craftcentral.org.uk/madeinclerkenwell.

 

  1. Cockpit Arts

Cockpit Arts have two London studios and support craft practitioners with their business incubator service. They have two open studios a year where you can visit makers of many different crafts, including jewellery, and buy directly from them.

http://cockpitarts.com/shop-cockpit/open-studios/

 

  1.    London Fashion Week

Anyone who’s anyone in fashion can be seen strutting their stuff at London Fashion Week and although it is a trade only event, London Fashion Weekend is open to members of the public. Get your tickets and shop, get a goody bag and browse the catwalk to see what’s next in the world of fashion. For full details see their website –http://www.londonfashionweekend.co.uk/

 

  1.    LJS

Last but by no means least, we at LJS run events throughout the year including our diploma student exhibitions, suppliers event, expert talks and the (now) legendary London Jewellery School Christmas Party! To keep up to date with future events make sure you are subscribed to our email newsletter.   
Let us know what you think of the events you go to and share any that are in your local area with us via our instagram, twitter or facebook pages or in the comments below.

Author: Anna Campbell

 

LJG Guest Blogger - Anna Campbell of Campbell Hall Designs

Could you be our 2016 Jewellery Maker of the Year?

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We are so excited about launching our competition to find the London Jewellery School Maker of the Year 2016!  Taking part is a great chance to promote your work, get exposure and, of course, bag some fab prizes.

The competition is open to everyone – you don’t need to have taken a Class with us – you just need to love making and creating beautiful jewellery, and we are accepting entries from jewellers in the UK and internationally!

The competition will be judged on:

Design – we are looking for innovative and original designs that are all your own!

Technique – we are looking for excellent application of one or more jewellery making techniques!

Presentation – great photos and presentation of your work is essential for selling and creating a great impression.

 

How it works:

One entry only please – multiple posts on the competition Facebook Post will be deleted and your entry may be disqualified! And no links to your shops please – this is a design competition!

Simply post between 1-3 pictures of your selected piece of jewellery that has been handmade by you along with a comment about what the inspiration for the piece was and the title of your piece on our Facebook Competition thread that you can find here.

Your piece can be any design and made up of any material, the only requirement is that it has been made by you.

The deadline for applications is Sunday 21st August 2016.

The top 5 entries will be announced on 31st August and added to our website and promoted as the finalists by LJS on our blog and social media channels.

The winner will be announced on Friday 5th September 2016.

This competition is in no way affiliated or endorsed by Facebook.

 

The Prizes:

1st – £250 Voucher for LJS (which can be used on any Classes (face to face or online) + a fab selection of Tools for your jewellery making Toolkit
2nd – £100 voucher and a selection of Tools for your Toolkit
3rd – A signed copy of Jessica Rose’s Bead & Wire Fashion Jewellery Book.

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The Judges:

The competition will be judged by a panel of LJS Tutors who are all professional and established jewellers.

If you have an queries or questions please contact us at karen@londonjewelleryschool.co.uk!

Good luck to all those who enter!

London Jewellery School are moving home to Hatton Garden!

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Yes it is true! We are moving home to Hatton Garden!!!

Whilst we have very much enjoyed our time near Brick Lane, from 7th July we will start to move into our brand new premises in Hatton Gardens (opposite Cookson Gold!) and are looking forward to being back where we belong!

As such, the School will be closed from 7th – 10th July and will formally reopen on Monday 11th July in our lovely new studio!

From 11th July, our new address will be:

New House
67-68 Hatton Garden
London EC1N 8JY

All classes will take place in our new studio from this date. We are so excited about coming home to the jewellery quarter and being surrounded by our lovely suppliers and friends in the jewellery industry.

We will have 2 fully equipped jewellery studios and a dedicated area for private tuition and wedding ring workshops – the building works are nearly complete and we can’t wait to invite you into our brand new space in just a couple of weeks. To come see us be sure to check out the latest classes on our timetable.

We will share some photos of our lovely new studios as soon as it is finished! But in the meantime – here is a sneak peak of the building works so far….

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Times are certainly changing and whatever happens, we will be here with our doors open to everyone.

Please do not hesitate to contact us on info@londonjewelleryschool.co.uk if you have any questions at all!

Men’s Jewellery part three!

London Jewellery School Blog - Men's Jewellery - Part 3

With the approach of father’s day I have been looking at trends in men’s jewellery. In the first post I concentrated on the cufflinks, and in the second I covered bracelets, necklaces and tie pins.  

This post focusses on Men’s rings.

Rings for men are getting more and more adventurous and so I have included a variety of different textures, materials and finishes.

1. Stone set Men’s Rings


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Black diamond white gold ring from Shona Jewellery

 

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Tension set ring from Vincenza Taormina

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Tanzanite gold ring from Gemporia

 

2. Signet rings

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Family seal ring from Dexter signet rings

 

 

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Sterling silver and onyx signet ring from Newburys Online

 

 

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Men’s gold signet ring by Otis Jaxon silver jewellery

 

3. Mixed materials

 

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Karma bronze and silver spinning ring from Charlotte’s web

 

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Walnut wood ring from Shiruba Tree

 

 

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Michael Kors mixed metal ring from Ernest Jones

 

 

4. Personalised


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Sterling silver secret message ring from Martha Jackson sterling silver

 

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Coastline map ring from Hannah Louise Lamb

 

 

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Personalised mens sterling silver spinner ring from Little Silver Star

Do you make men’s jewellery? We’d love to see your creations! Do share them with us in the comments below or via our instagram, twitter or facebook pages.

Author: Anna Campbell

LJG Guest Blogger - Anna Campbell of Campbell Hall Designs

Rent a jewellery studio or work from home – a journey

In March this year tutor Anna Campbell wrote on the blog about her thoughts about renting a jewellery studio versus working from home. She now has an update!

Whether to rent a jewellery studio or work from home was an issue that was at the forefront of my mind when I wrote the blog post a few months ago. I was wanting to further develop my jewellery business and teaching and it was one option to consider. I looked at whether there were studios available locally as I knew it was unlikely I’d want the cost and time of travelling too far. I hadn’t found anything that I thought would work for me. Luckily, serendipity happened to help me out! I was working one evening at the London Jewellery School alongside tutor Penny Akester and it transpired that she was looking for someone to share a studio with at Craft Central!

It was great timing and a good opportunity to share the costs as well as to have someone to work alongside.


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I got my keys at the beginning of May and Penny and I spent a day building flat packed furniture to furnish our studio (here we are in action!)

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We had a deadline to get up and running because there was an open studios at Craft Central for Made in Clerkenwell starting on 18th May and we wanted to be ready for this. We were and we opened up our studio to visitors that week. Thanks to all the LJS students who came to see us! It was appreciated.

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My current thoughts and hopes for the future

I am pleased to have the opportunity to have a dedicated jewellery workspace. It is also great to have someone to discuss ideas with (and to share the costs!). Penny and I have very different styles and I think that is the best possible scenario as we can learn from each other to feed into our own work.

The bi-annual open studios also is a great opportunity to sell my work and get feedback from customers on my designs.

 

Do you rent a studio or work from home? We’d love to know your thoughts on this issue and see some photos of your workspace! Share them with us in the comments below or via our instagram, twitter or facebook pages.

Author: Anna Campbell

LJG Guest Blogger - Anna Campbell of Campbell Hall Designs

Welcome to our new studios

The big move has happened.

We are now in our fabulous new studios at 7 Hatton Square Business Centre, 16-16a Baldwins Gardens, London EC1N 7RJ.

That’s the same building as before but now we are downstairs.

The first class in the beading studio this morning was technical drawing for some of our Diploma students.

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The silver studio is ready for a wedding ring workshop.

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And the new refreshment area is gleaming – and don’t worry there are plenty of biscuits.

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But we still have unpacking to do in the third studio…

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…. and the office isn’t quite sorted yet. But the tranformation is amazing – come and see for yourself with a class soon.

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Spring special offer – 15% off jewellery making classes

The glimmers of Spring sunshine that are finally appearing have gladdened the hearts of the LJS team so much that we wanted to bring a little brightness into your lives as well.

So we are offering 15% off all classes taking place between Wednesday 17 April and Sunday 5 May inclusive.

There is a wide range of classes taking place during the special offer period. If you want to learn a completely new skill, there are beginners’ courses in wire wrapping, wax carving, precious metal clay and beading plus taster classes in everthing from Introduction to Gemstones to Making a Leather Necklace. Or if you want to take your skills to the next level there’s Advanced Beading and Polishing and Finishing in silver.

If you want to join in our celebration of Spring with a spot of jewellery making, use the promotion code 09041303 when you book to ensure your 15% discount.

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