Happy New Year!

When September rolls around, it is like a brand new year! School starts again with students going into a new grade. Routines get back in place and we make ‘Fall’ resolutions, like ‘We’re going to paint the living room in time for the holidays’, or, I’m going to enroll in new jewellery classes this fall’. BeadFX classes have geared up to include new projects with established instructors as well as opportunities with new teachers. If you had a chance to drop by BeadFX on September 7, you would have seen the new class offerings and met the terrific people presenting …

Sand Cast Rings with visiting instructor Robyn Cornelius

Course outline: Learn this low tech way to cast your very own solid rings without the use of big equipment. Learn how to cast shapes that would otherwise be hard to make in a home studio and embellish with a a set gemstone. In addition we will play with texture to create flat ring shanks to be formed into rings once cast. Skill level: All level Prerequisite: Some soldering and metalwork will be helpful but not required. Technique: Sand casting, metalwork including gem setting and soldering Bring to class: Cabochon or rose-cut gemstone Sterling Silver scrap (15 – 20 grams) …

Jeweled Connections with visiting instructor Robyn Cornelius

Course outline: Make an anticlastic necklace using basic silversmithing tools and learn how to attach your favorite gemstone beads using pin connections and a torch. Skill levels: All levels Prerequisite: Some soldering and metalwork will be helpful but not required. Technique: Anticlastic hammering techniques, soldering, pin connections, and patinas. Bring to class: Sterling silver sheet, 20ga; 1.5cm wide x 4.5″ long Sterling silver round wire, 26ga, 10′ in length Sterling silver tubing, 9mm diameter, 5mm in length 9″ strand of 3-4mm gemstone beads (instructor’s preference: faceted rondelles) Of special note: the class patterns and instructions from our classes are for …

Spinner Rings with visiting instructor Robyn Cornelius

Course outline: Make your very own personalized sterling silver spinner ring, also known as a meditation or worry ring. Learn how to give this ring some personality by flaring the edge, adding color or creating little torn decorations. Skill level: All levels Prerequisite: Some soldering and metalwork will be helpful but not required. Technique: Metalwork including soldering, forging and texturing Bring to class: Sterling silver sheet in 18ga or 20ga sufficient length for a ring. You can trim to a desired width. Sterling silver round wire, 20ga, approximately 5″ in length. You can also create spinners using copper and brass …

Take a mini-vacation with a class!

Creativity doesn’t take a vacation – in fact, it can be triggered by a simple change in routine such as taking time for yourself. Our mid-July classes are chock-a-block full of creativity and fun! Many of them are also suitable for younger students – a great way to introduce a new generation to ‘handmade’! Naomi Smith will take you through the steps to create your traditional indigenous flat bag. Chainmaille enthusiasts will love classes with both Marilyn Gardiner and Gillian Clarke. Ann Shewan will teach you how to drill small stones and pebbles – great items to pick-up on your next …

Country-wide Fireworks kick off the Summer Classes!

July is just around the corner, and we have lots to celebrate including Canada Day and, for our southern neighbours, Independence Day. Enjoy the parties, fireworks and picnics! Our early-July classes feature four new projects! Gillian Clarke combines beads and chainmaille for two bracelets while Christine Woollacott will teach you how to create custom findings for your designs and how to create a simple post setting that you can use in a myriad of ways. Liz Kennedy and Anne Marie Desaulniers are presenting encore seed beading and metalwork classes – in case they didn’t work with your schedule before now! …

Easy Gemstone Stacking Rings

Course outline: In this class with Christine Woollacott, students will make simple and stylish sterling silver stacking rings with colourful gemstone accents. The class will focus on simple tricks for making rings with sterling silver wire, and will go over the basics of stone setting using pre-formed fine silver bezels. The class will go over texturing and finishing techniques such as how to achieve a high polish, hammer texture, or satin finish to the ring. This is an excellent course for people who are interested in taking the first step in learning how to bezel set gemstones. Skill level: Beginner/Intermediate …

“May” all things be possible!

May is a month of celebrations – some very serious, such as Mother’s Day, and Cinco de Mayo, and some that are just plain wacky – such as ‘Star Wars’ Day (May the Fourth Be With You.) Late-May celebrations includes Victoria Day in Canada and Memorial Day in the United States. The best part is enjoying a long weekend with friends and family. To be honest, I’m finding that May is racing by; June seems to be right around the corner. Join me by living in the present and enjoying what is here and now – including upcoming classes with visiting …

Planting Seeds of Creativity

It’s that time of year when we clean out the garden and start to select greenery to plant. Spring is also an ideal time of year to shake the winter cobwebs from our imagination and look for inspiration to get our creativity flowering again. Can you stimulate creativity? Yes – everyone can become more creative! I like to use the camera feature of my phone to snap colour ideas from clothes in a store or patterns and textures on walls and pavement. Ideas exist everywhere. I have no idea what I’ll use the photos for, but it may spark a …

Hot Connections 1: Intro to Soldering

Course outline: Learning to solder silver is your gateway into the world of fine metalwork. In this class with instructor Iris Rogers Melamed you will learn how to solder circles of heavy gauge silver wire and transform them into earrings and stacking rings. We will begin with an overview of soldering tools, materials and techniques. Then we will fuel and fire up our butane torches and learn how to solder jump rings. Next we will discover how to create earrings and stacking rings by forming and soldering larger circles. Some metalwork finishing techniques will be discussed. Time permitting, one set …