Introduction to Jewelry Making: Take Your Hand Sketch to an Accessory | Jose Anglada | Skillshare

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Introduction to Jewelry Making: Take Your Hand Sketch to an Accessory

teacher avatar Jose Anglada, Jewelry designer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Your Project


    • 3.

      Tools and Materials You’ll Need


    • 4.

      Setting up Your Home Studio


    • 5.

      Introduction to saw piercing


    • 6.



    • 7.

      Design Your Jewelry Piece


    • 8.

      Hand Pierce Your Design


    • 9.

      Filing & Finishing Your Jewelry Piece


    • 10.

      Assemble Your Brass Piece Into a Wearable Piece of Jewelry


    • 11.

      Final Thanks


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About This Class

Would you like to take your first steps into jewelry making? Have you ever thought about making your own jewelry? Would you like to translate your designs into other media like silver or brass? This class is for you!

This class is aimed as an introduction to goldsmithing. You will learn how to design, hand-pierce, and give the desired finishing to a jewelry piece.

You will start by learning how to set up your home studio and defining the tools you’ll need. Then, you will be introduced to the saw piercing technique and secrets to hand-pierce like a pro. After getting acquainted with the technique, you will start by hand sketching your jewelry pieces and translating them into metal. Finally, you will file, polish, and assemble your jewelry piece. 

This course will give you the tools to take the first firm steps in the world of jewelry design. It is designed to help you go from zero to holding your first jewelry piece in your hands within a very short time. Whether you already have some experience with a jeweler's saw or are completely new to it, you will find this course invaluable as it will take you through step by step how to set up a studio at home and create a professional-looking saw pierced jewelry piece.

Hand-piercing is a method used to translate a drawing into a jewelry piece, cutting out the desired shape from a metal sheet. This exciting technique is the starting point for jewelry making. 

Josefina will guide you step by step and share with you all her tips and tricks so that you can design and create jewelry like a pro in no time. 

In this class, we will cover:

  • How to set up a studio at home and become familiar with basic jeweler's tools. 
  • The hand-piercing technique in detail: many insider tips to gain confidence with saw piercing.
  • Creativity and brainstorming methods to get inspired and think of your design.
  • How to design a piece of jewelry adapting your ideas to the limitations of the technique, in order to reach the best result possible. 
  • Understand how to translate your design to a metal sheet.  
  • Learn how to use sandpaper effectively to arrive at the desired finishing. 
  • Learn how to polish your work by hand
  • Learn how to attach beads to your design and how to assemble your jewelry piece.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Jose Anglada

Jewelry designer


My name is Josefina and I’m an Argentinean jewelry designer based in Berlin with a passion for simple and honest forms. Having trained as an industrial designer and a jeweler, I took the best of both worlds and founded Jose Anglada, offering both classic and innovative jewelry. My pieces are designed and handcrafted one at a time with great commitment to quality and care for materials, honoring and preserving the dedication and time that artisanal creation entails.


In addition to my jewelry collections, I welcome commissions and collaborations with other brands and I’m always happy to create bespoke pieces for individuals.


For me, crafting is a space of joy! I hope that through my classes you can feel for yoursel... See full profile

Related Skills

Crafts & DIY Jewelry & Metal
Level: All Levels

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1. Introduction: [MUSIC] Hi, my name is Jose Anglada, I'm an industrial designer and jeweler living and working in Berlin where I ran my own jewelry studio. [MUSIC] I know that jewelry making can seem overwhelming, but believe me it doesn't have to be. This class is an introduction to go smiting design for creative people that want to take their first steps into designing and making their own jewelry. The technique I'm going to teach you is called saw pressing and it is the starting point for jewelry making. It is used to translate a design or drawing into a jewelry piece by cutting out the desired shape from a metal sheet. This process requires only few tools and it is a great way for beginners to jump right into creating their own pieces and accessories. In this class, I will guide you step by step from start to finish to create your own jewelry piece. I will explain to you the logic behind the saw pressing techniques so that you can unleash your creativity and design your own pieces like a pro in no time. We will go together through the entire process. From the first rough sketches to the final design, preparing the metal, sewing, filing, polishing, and assembling your jewelry piece. I will also guide you through the process of setting up your own studio at home, choosing the right tools and understanding the materials we'll be working with. If there is anything I know is that jewelry making is an exciting world with infinite possibilities. I look forward to sharing with you all my tips and tricks and seeing what you create. [MUSIC] 2. Your Project: [MUSIC] Thanks for joining me in this class. I'm very happy to have you here. Your project is to create a jewelry piece departing from your hand sketches. I believe that design skills are as important as technical skills. That's the reason why I will encourage you at all times to arrive at your own unique designs. Before we start designing your jewelry pieces, we're going to get acquainted with our suffering. I dedicated an entire lesson to explain to you everything you need to know about the hand pressing technique and some challenges you might find along the way. We will do a small exercise together. You've got some practice and build up confidence to start piercing your assigned metal. This lesson will provide you with a solid foundation to understand the limitations of the technique. In this way, you will be able to design your jewelry piece as taking all of these into account. After that, we will analyze some sources of inspiration and think together how this could translate into jewelry pieces. We will start designing on paper, by drawing a lot and polishing those rough sketches until we arrive at a design that really talks to us and we want to translate into metal. I will ask you to trace the design with a permanent marker and after that, the magic begins. We will start placing your design on a metal sheet. We will do it together step-by-step and once you're done, we will file it and polish the piece of metal, so that it looks good and shiny. Finally, we will assemble the metal piece to a chain or findings, so that you can wear it or maybe gift it to someone you love. In the next lesson, I will introduce you to all the materials you will need for this project. [MUSIC] 3. Tools and Materials You’ll Need: [MUSIC] Hi again. Before you start designing, I want to talk a little bit about the tools that you will need for this project. I have good news. You don't need to buy a ton of expensive tools to get started in metalsmithing, let me introduce you to the most important tools you need to have. As you can see, it's not so many of them, and most of them are really inexpensive. But let's see one-by-one what is it that you need. Let's start with the saw frame. There are all kind of saw frames out there. The one that I have here is a very affordable frame, and it's great to start practicing. Saw blades. I recommend buying good-quality saw blades. Believe me, they will save you a lot of headaches. Sheet metal, we will use 21 gauge or 0.8 millimeters. I recommend that you start with brass or bronze, as this is very inexpensive material, and it's perfect to start practicing. Once you feel more confident, you can start using silver. We will need drill bits of one millimeter, and 1.4 or 1.3. You will need hand drill. This one that I have here is not so expensive, but you can find even cheaper versions in the internet like this one or this one that I have here. This one is like for real beginners. It's made out of plastic. I've tried it, it works, but it can be a little bit frustrated to work with. If you can, I definitely suggest that you buy one of these or one of the other versions of electric hand drills you can find on the Internet. Then we will need a steel punch. We will use this little tool to make some marks in the metal so that our drills are not dancing around when we want to drill the holes. If you don't want to spend so much yet, you can avoid buying the steel punch, and use a normal nail. That will definitely make the job. We will need normal printing paper, tracing paper, a pencil, a black permanent marker, or any other color would be okay too. You will need a set of pliers. I brought my favorites to work with. For sure you will need a chain nose plier, a rounded plier, and a flush cutter. Then we will need safety glasses. A candle, we will use this old candle to lubricate the blades, and to lubricate also the drill bits. Scissors, a bench pin. This one that I have here is really super inexpensive, like I think that you can get it for 3.5 bucks. I mean, it's perfect to start practicing. You will need a hammer. If you don't have a chasing hammer, you can use whatever hammer you have at home. We will just use it to make this little marks in the metal together with the steel punch. You will need sanding papers of different grids. For this project, I recommend starting with 400, then 800, 1000, 1200. The good thing about sandpaper is that you can also get it in your local DIY shop, so they don't need to be specifically for jewelry. You will also need double-sided tape and A polishing cloth. Finally, you will need some jewelry findings to assemble your pieces. What I have prepared here, as you can see, I have some French hoops for earrings, some beading pins, and some jump rings. All of them are made out of bronze. It's not so easy to find bronze jewelry findings. If you don't find bronze jewelry findings, then you can go for other options as silver gold-plated or silver gold field. Usually the color of the gold-plated silver is very similar to bronze, so they look really nice together. The only problem will be that bronze will tarnish and the gold-plated silver doesn't. But you can always polish your pieces when they tarnish, so it will be okay. Try to get bronze findings, and if not, any of the others alternatives I just suggested. Then I also chose some bits. I have some tiny sweet water pearls, and some turquoise beads. These are made of real stones. If you want, you can use others or none at all. This is just for decoration. As I said, it's your own design so you will be making the decisions. This is it. For this class, I have provided a list with all the tools, and their codes from Rio Grande, so you can be sure you are buying the right tool. I have left a PDF in the project and resources gallery for you to download it. In the next lesson, we are going to discuss how to set up your home studio. [MUSIC] 4. Setting up Your Home Studio: [MUSIC] In this lesson, I will share with you some tips on how to set up a home studio with the least amount of tools or investment. As you immerse yourself in the world of jewelry making, you can buy more tools little by little, or improve your workspace to work more efficiently. I think there's a right time for everything and having few tools shouldn't stop you from starting. I want to show you how to set up a studio at home just like I did when I started making jewelry myself. I was working in my room with very few tools, and it was not only until two years later that I moved to a workshop shared with other jewelers. In order to set up your home studio, you will need a study table to attach your bench pin to. In my case, I'm using this idea tres stool whose height can be adjusted to work comfortably. When making jewelry, most of the work is done on the bench pin, which should be around your chest height. That is why I set up the table a little higher than normal. If you don't have these tres stools, you can attach your bench pin to a normal table and get a very low chair to sit on. My chair's height is also adjustable. When I'm working at the bench pin, I put it down so that the bench pin will be at my chest height. When I'm working on something else, for example, designing or computer work, I put it higher so that I'm sitting comfortably. Let me show you how to attach the bench pin. First of all, make sure that the screw is loose enough to fit on your surface. Just unscrew it. We will put the metal piece through this hole. We will slide the pin until the end and start screwing [NOISE] the metal piece. Try to check that it's making two angles of 90 degrees. Then start screwing strongly and tightly as you can. It is very important that these will be like a very safe surface to work on. It has to be as tight as possible. You see, for example, now it's moving a little bit, that's still not tight enough, so I will grab this tool and help me tightening. [NOISE] That's strong and sturdy. That should be fine. As you can see, the bench pin is more or less around my [NOISE] chest hide when I put my chair down, and that's the perfect height to work on my bench pin [NOISE]. Lastly, I would like to make some notes about safety in your home studio. Ideally, safety glasses should be worn at all times. Not when designing, of course, but they are a must when sewing or using grids. Now that you're home studio is ready, let's get down to work. In the next lesson, you will learn how to use your jewelry saw. Have ready a small piece of metal, your saw frame, and saw blades and meet me in the next lesson [MUSIC] 5. Introduction to saw piercing: Before we dive into designing our jewelry pieces, I would like to dedicate this lesson to getting acquitted with our saw frames. A jewelry saw frame and blades are essential for cutting shapes out of a sheet of metal. sawing or piercing is an essential technique for metal-smithing. Once mastered, the skill will be used again and again in almost every area of jewelry making, regardless of how far along you are in your jewelry-making journey, this saw frame will always be at your bench. This lesson, it's going to be full of information on how to hand-pierce like a pro. But first, let me explain to you how to put your saw blades in your frames correctly. First of all, we need to take one of the blades. They usually come in these bundles so you just need to take out this little tiny wire and slide one of the blades outside of the bundle carefully. Something very important is to orientate the blade correctly. The teeth of the blade should always point down towards the handle and towards the direction, you'll be sawing. This is our saw frame that it's composed of a handle, two nuts, one up and one down, and here a third nut that is going to regulate the aperture or the height of the frame itself. Once oriented correctly, place the blade in the top nut and tighten. You put it in and you tighten the nut as much as you can. You have to ensure that the blade is pointing downwards to the handle. If the blade is going out in this direction, that is not right. Be sure that the blade has been tightened in the top nut following a perpendicular line to this part of the frame. Now we need to adjust the length of the saw frame only if necessary. To know if the length of the saw frame is correctly, the end of your blend should reach about the middle point of the lower nut. In this case, my frame, it's a little bit too small, so I will just loosen here a tiny bit and give it a little bit more space until this is reaching more or less than middle of this downwards nut and then again, I will tighten up. This has to be also very firm. Now I will place the end of the blade in the nut at the bottom of the frame like this and before tightening up this nut, what I need to do is to flex the frame. The way I do it is helping with my chest so I press the frame against the table or the bench pin and I do strength and then I tighten up my blade. You always need to check that the tension of the blade is correctly before you start sawing. If the blade is to lose, it will break. If the saw blade has been secured correctly, it should make a little acute sound when you ping it with your fingernail. I will check. You're ready to start sawing. Let's start by making a small exercise together, you will need a small piece of metal sheet, a permanent marker, a steel punch, your hammer, of course, your saw blade and frame and you will also need your hand drill and the drill bits. You will need to grab the piece of metal on your permanent marker and we will draw three lines. One line is going to be straight, the other one it's going to be like a wavy line and finally, a zigzag line. Also I will ask you to draw a circle wherever in the metal sheet, so I will show you how to do it. The whole point of this exercise is that you will practice a little bit with your saw frame. All the different challenges that you can encounter when sawing your jewelry piece. That's why we are working with three different types of lines. In the case of the zigzag line, that's the most challenging one, there you will be practicing how to saw corners. The important thing is that the lines start at the edge of the metal sheet, so for example, I will start here. Now we have our lines and we can start practicing, but before you start sawing, I would like to share with you some tips on how to treat your saw frame correctly. Number 1, be delicate with it. Your arm and hand should be relaxed at all times, the saw frame we'll be doing all the work. If you're a hand and arms start to hurt this is a sign that you are very tense. Two, position of the hand in the handle. I like to use this little finger to stop the end of the handle and then the rest of my hand will just go around the handle without doing any pressure. Don't do this, just grab it softly and relaxed. Three, when sawing, make sure your blade is always perpendicular to the metal sheet and not tilting sideways. If you are sawing, be sure that there's a 90 degrees angle between the sheet and the blade. Do not put the blade like this or like this. To move ahead or in any direction, the blade should always be in movement, up and down, up and down. Do not apply any forward pressure. This means that you need to trust your frame. You have to concentrate on doing this up and down movement and on keeping the blade always in movement and the blade will flow through the metal. This movement should not come from your breast, no, it should come from your elbow, so this is the movement. Lastly, always support the work with your secondary hand to prevent it from flapping with the cutting action. This should be strongly against the bench beam and of course, keep your fingers out of the path of the saw. Now we are ready to start the exercise. It is very important that you put on your safety glasses as small metal particles can jump into your eyes. Sexy. Hold a piece of metal to your bench beam very firmly with your secondary hand. We will start by sawing the straight line. In order to start sawing, you have to rest the blade against the metal sheet on the point that you want to enter the metal sheet. As the blade has one side that has teeth that are really dangerous, but the other side is flat without teeth, here it's safely to pressure with your thumbnail and nothing will happen. In order to enter the metal, rest the saw blade against the metal sheet and put your thumbnail on the blade just for the first couple of strokes, yes and you move your blade upwards a couple of times until you marked it and this will permit you to start sawing. Again, your hand on your arm are very relaxed and you concentrate in the up and down movement. Try to use the whole length of the blade and keep your eyes on the line. If you see that the blade is not flowing through the metal correctly, you can grab the candle and just put a tiny bit of candle to lubricate the blade so that it flows better. Once you've reached the end of your line, you are ready to remove the saw. To do so, keep on moving your blade up and down and go out through where you enter. You saw your first line. How did it go? Let me make a comment about saw blades now, they break really easily. Do not feel bad if they break. Sometimes they break many times while sawing one design, just take it out and put another one, be sure it is attached correctly, and go on. Now we're going to continue sawing our wavy line. Again we will rest the blade on the metal, use our thumbnail and do some upstrokes. Couple of them just to make a little mark where we're going to start cutting and start with your up and down movements. In order to turn with your blade, you should be moving your metal piece and not your blade so much because if not it's going to break. Always keep the movement on the blade. Do not turn your metal piece without moving your blade because it will break. Always keep the up and down movement while you're moving the piece of metal to guide the blade through the line. Great. Again, once you reached the end of the line, go on with the up and down movements and just take it out through the same place where you entered. Now we will solve for the zigzag line. This one is a little bit tricky because it has corners. When you're turning corners, ensure zero forward pressure is applied to the saw frame. Use short strokes and turn the work rather than the saw. Let's see how that works. I'm reaching my corner here and instead of using the whole length of the blade, I will do smaller movements., and while I do these small movements I will turn my metal but always keeping the movements. Once I'm in the right direction, I continue sawing forward with the full length. We are almost done with our exercise. We only need to cut out this little circle. Of course, you can enter with the saw blade from the edge of the mantelpiece and cut the circle but I want to explain something else here. Sometimes you will need to create negative spaces on your designs. In order to achieve these without having a line coming in from the border of your piece, you will need to drill a hole first. You will now grab your steel punch and your hand drill, whatever that is, and have the hand drill ready and we will just make a little mark with our hammer and the steel punch. This is where we're going to drill our hole. In order to drill a hole, we also need to lubricate the drill bit. We will lubricate it with a little bit of the wax. Then we're not going to worry about the bench thing because the bench thing is for us to work on it and it's fine to make holes. We're going to drill the hole. In order to drill the hole the drill bits must always be perpendicular. Do not tilt it in any direction. Keep the drill perpendicular. I like to use this finger to support the tool. Then with the rest of my hand, I just do this movement. There we go. Now we have a tiny hole in our metal through where we can insert the blade to start sewing this negative space in our design. In order to do that, I will untie the lower naught, and I will insert the blade through the hole. I will kind of thread through the hole with the blade and I will put my piece of work on the top. Then again, be sure that I I'm flexing the frame enough so that the blade will be correctly tensed. I close the nut very strongly. Of course, you make the little pink sound to make sure that the blade has been attached correctly. After listening to it, you can start sawing. Now that you know how to saw a straight line, a wavy line, you've also practiced how to saw corners and negative spaces, let's make a quick recap of what we can do with our saw frame and a piece of sheet metal. We can piece a simple design with just outline, a design with decorative lines, a design with internal decorative lines, and a design with negative spaces. Of course, these drawings here are super, super simple, it's just to explain you as an example. You can make a more complicated design but this is to understand the logic behind the technique. In the first case, in order to pierce this simple design, we will be able to enter from the edge of the metal until the line with our saw frame through anywhere we want. We have seen this already. In the best case, you will be doing this in just one go so you will enter and cut the entire design. But don't worry if now that you are still practicing, you need to come in cut a little bit, go out, or maybe your saw blade breaks in the middle of the process and you need to come in again through another place. Don't worry about these. The result would be a little hard like this one here. Let's see for this case. This case is very similar. You will also enter first to cut the contour of the heart. Then as a second step, you will be able to pierce the internal lines. Because as these internal lines are coming from the edge of the piece, then you can first cut the piece and then do the decorative lines afterwards. The result will be the same little hard, but with these decorative lines in one of the sides. Now we have these two other examples that have our internal decorative lines or negative spaces. As we have learned already, in order to pierce internal decorative lines or negative spaces, we need to drill a hole through which we are going to pass the saw blade in order to start piercing. In this case, we're going to first drill the holes. Second, we're going to pierce the internal decorative lines. Why are we doing this as a second step? Because until now we still have the entire piece of metal to hold onto so it's easier to work this way rather than sawing or piercing the internal lines once we have cut the heart. The third step would be to cut the contour of the piece. Our end result will be this one. Remember that the holes that we do in order to pierce the internal lines are part of our design. The last case is very similar. First we drill the hole, second, we are going to pierce the negative space and third, the overall contour of the piece. In this case, we are going to have a little heart with a negative space. In a nutshell, we're going to start by piercing out the negative spaces and the internal lines first. The last step will be to cut out the outside of the design. We do this so that we have a little bit more metal to hold onto during the piercing process. If we make a slight mistake by over cutting, we can usually adjust the outside of the design a little bit to accommodate this. As you can see, the technique has its limitations. For example, you cannot do an internal line without having a little hole at some point of the line because this is where you will insert the blade through the metal to start sawing. I personally love technological limitations because they give these crafty look to the jewelry pieces. I also like the challenge of adapting my ideas to what is really possible. Now that you know how to use your saw frame and what are the limitations of the technique, it is time to start designing our jewelry pieces. In the next lesson, we will talk about sources of inspiration and we will collect some images that will inform our designs. Are you excited? 6. Inspiration: In this lesson, we will be talking about inspiration. The truth is that the line between inspiration and imitation is a fine one. It is much easier to avoid falling into imitation if we look for inspiration in things other than jewelry. It can be art or nature or architecture. It can be anything. Just think of things you love and inspire you. For example, if you are a cat lover maybe you want to make a pendant with a silhouette of your cat or if you love plants maybe you want to collect images of tropical plants and get inspired by the shape of their leaves. It can be anything you love and might inspire you. For this project I encourage you to gather some images that you can use as inspiration for what's coming next. Designing your jewelry pieces. Of course, the Internet is probably the most practical way of gathering reference images but it doesn't have to be the only one. You can also find inspiration in books or catalogs, photographs, even objects. For example, I am a lover of simple and doughnut shapes. My designs are usually very geometric and clean but I also love nature and how it's shapes can inspire my designs. I would like to share with you next some images and sources of inspiration that I put together for this class. These are two postcards that I bought recently in a museum shop. It's Matisse. As you might know Matisse used to work a lot with the paper cut technique. The reason why I think these two images are relevant for us today is exactly because of that. If something can be cut out of paper it can be definitely cut out of metal. The fact that he was cutting these shapes out of paper were also giving him some limitations. The shapes are a lot more simple that he would have been maybe drawing or painting. For example, this is clearly a human body but the shapes have been simplified and the silhouette has been simplified into a simple line work that he cut it out of paper. This technique is I think very relevant and inspiring for the technique that we're going to be working with. I also brought to share with you this book. This book is a book by Cynthia Alonso and [inaudible]. The illustrations are by Cynthia Alonso. It's an Argentinian illustrator. I really love diving into children's book because the illustrations are simple and beautiful and for me super inspiring. For example, already this end paper I can already see these beautiful silhouettes in jewelry. They would look like just gorgeous. Here you can see the same leaves but with a little bit more of detail. There's some internal line work that could also be done in metal. Look at these olive tree leaves or these little flowers, how simple the drawing is and then some details inside or these beautiful flowers. Imagine cutting these out of metal would be just lovely. Here she's working with abstract shapes. Of course, our jewelry pieces do not need to be something literally. They don't need to be a tree or a cat or leaves. They can also be abstract shapes that are beautiful and aesthetic. We can also get inspired by abstract art or abstract patterns. Let me show you one of my favorite parts of the book. Here, the eucalyptus tree. I simply love these leaves, these falling leaves. I can also see them in jewelry like so much. Maybe a pair of earrings that are alone. There's also this other book that I would like to share with you. This is an Argentinian artist based in UK. Her name is Sophia Salazar but her artistic name is Hiedra. I wanted to share it with you. For example, these illustrations that we've just seen are digital illustrations. They are full of color and textures. That's not important for us because we're not going to be working in color. Of course, we cannot create textures on the middle. I mean, yes we can but we're not going to do it in this project. This artist works a lot with woodcut or lino cut. She also uses paper cut. Her art really calls me and I'm a big fan of her. But look for example, how simple this silhouette is. Like how she managed to draw a human body in just simple few lines. Of course, we would need to make some adaptations here to be able to cut this out of only one piece of metal but we are almost there. Also look at this body. Again, we would need to maybe make some adaptations but this can perfectly inform our designs. She also works a lot with paper cut technique as well. You can definitely see how she was inspired by Matisse paper cuts. For example here. Again, this can definitely be an inspiration for us as whatever can be carried out of paper, can be carried out if metal. Lastly, I would like to share with you a Pinterest board that I put together especially for this lesson, to share with you a little bit of the research that I have been doing to gather some images to inform my designs. I want to quickly show you how my Pinterest board looks like. I gathered a lot of imagery that are mainly illustrations of plants and nature but in a very simple yet expressive way that is usually also incorporating a lot of geometric shapes. I found this beautiful vases whose shapes I love. I think they are so elegant and so simple. I'm sure that these shapes can inform my designs. I also found as you can see here, a lot of illustrations of flowers and plants whose shapes are very simple with not so many details. But I am sure that all of these shapes that you can see are going to look so awesome when we cut them out from metal. I also found some nice reference images of packaging. More vases. Look at these shapes. More and more plants, flowers, leaves. Look at these corals here. Lisa Congdon, I gathered some artworks and patterns from her because I think that she really masters the art of drawing with simple and few lines but her drawings are so expressive, so funny, so lovely. I also found this beautiful poster here. It's a poster I made to promote the French Film Festival in Uruguay in the year 1959. These shapes over here they're funny, like some bouncy cloud that is simple but yet so funny and expressive. I can see these shapes being transformed into beautiful pair of earrings or some jewelry piece. Lastly, I want to show you this woman body. How simple the contour of the silhouette is. So little detail and yet it's so expressive and beautiful. They added some internal line work that we can also do in our designs to give some detail to the piece, to the design. But overall, there are just few lines. It's very simple but yet very beautiful and expressive. This is it, it's not so long. It's mostly simple geometric shapes in my case that are representing nature in most cases. But just gathering images and references that are inspiring to me and that will inform my designs in the next lesson. I hope this was useful. I'm going to leave this link in the resources so you can have a look closely. In the next lesson, we're going to start designing our jewelry pieces. Please select five images and have them handy. If you can print them that's even better. They don't need to be in color. Black and white is totally fine. If you are an artist or illustrator with a defined style and you already have designs that you want to translate into jewelry pieces that's great. Then you might have not need to do all of these research and search for inspiration. To transform your designs into jewelry pieces you just have to make small adaptations, taking into account the limitations of the technique. But don't worry. We'll do that together in the next lesson. Just print out your designs and have them handy. [MUSIC] 7. Design Your Jewelry Piece: Before we dive into designing, I would like to talk to you about some key aspects I recommend you to take into account throughout the design process. First, of course, have into account the limitations of the techniques at all times. Second, we will use the sources of inspiration as our starting point and then give freely on to your creativity. Third, I want to ask you to keep it simple. This is your very first jewelry piece and I would like to encourage you to work with very simple line drawings and to avoid including too many details. Four, the size. Let's think of the size of the piece we will be designing from the beginning. Scaling the design might be a little bit complicated. Of course, it's possible we can scan our designs and then scale them in the computer. But for this project, I encourage you to make your drawings in the real scale. I recommend you to work in a scale that goes from 2.5 centimeters by 2.5 centimeters and four centimeters by four centimeters as a maximum area. I printed some of the images from my Pinterest board to have them handy. You don't need to do this. If you don't have a printer, you can also refer to your Pinterest board instead. But I like to work analogically a lot. I printed two artworks by Lisa Congdon. I also printed the beautiful bases by Eric Roinestad. This is our Retro Scandinavian Print by Laura Danby. This one here is a botanical pattern by Sarah Abbott. The materials I have with me here are plain paper, tracing paper, a ruler, just because I'm a fanatic of geometric shapes, but you don't need that. But I also use the ruler to cut the tracing paper, a pencil, and a permanent thin marker. This is very thin. It's important that it's very thin because we want to be precise. I don't have a rubber with me or eraser because I prefer to keep all of the process. Even though I might start doing some drawings and then end up in a totally different place, that's why I use the tracing paper. I'm going to share with you a very simple technique to start by doing very rough sketches that you don't have to think so much about them and then polish them with this tracing paper to arrive to the very final design. Let's get started. First of all, I would like to refer to these bases that cultivated my attention in the first instant I saw them. I really like this detail on the side of the base. I think that a jewelry piece with this detail would look beautiful. I'm going to start by drawing these. Do not think so much. These are just rough sketches. Just don't make any judgment and just start doing drawings. Of course, we cannot cut this out of metal, as we already learned. Why? Because by cutting this line, this piece would fall and we don't want that. If I would like to make a design that is similar to this one, I would need to adopt this design to make it work according to the limitations of the technique. The way I can do that is so I know that this part and this part need to be connected. I will first start drawing the general contour of the piece, that is this one. Now that I have the general contour of the piece, I can think of how I could include some of these details, but without having the piece falling or being cut. Maybe I can add this line, but not until the end, so until here, also here a little bit, and here too. This would create this impression of a line, but the line cannot be all the way drawn because if not you would have three different pieces. Maybe I can add some details, for example, I could make some dots here or for example, I would like to show you this reference. I chose this reference because I really like the the internal line work she includes. As you can see, she's using very simple shapes that are naive and they could have been done with paperwork, like with paper cut technique. They are really rough and simple. Then inside she uses this line work that I really like that gives a lot of expression to these very simple shapes. Maybe we can do the same here and just try to add some line work to our design. Then, of course, when we are designing jewelry, we need to start thinking how are we going to assemble that? Because this is part of the design. In this case, what is it going to be? Is it going to be a pendant? Is it going to be earrings? For me, this looks more like a pendant for a necklace. I would need to drill a hole there and then just put a jump ring. You see how the pattern from a base that inspired me because of the beauty of its shapes. I arrive to a design to a jewelry piece that is totally different and then I can continue to analyze my resources. There's something that they all have in common and is the geometric shapes and the simplicity of the shapes. In this case, flowers or branches have been represented in a very simple and geometric way and abstract too. Maybe I can start choosing some shapes that I would like to use for my designs. For example, I love this one here, I love this one here, and this one. Maybe I can already say to myself like, hey, maybe you want to work with this shape. You want to work with a shape that is more or less like these, somehow. Then I would also include something like this, and maybe for the leaves, I need something like this. What about I would also maybe add here some other things that are inspiring. Look at this one here. Like how expressive that abstract shape, is and the linework inside. This one has a linework too, so once I've analyzed those resources or reference images, I can let them go and just continue working with my own creativity. I will put them aside, but I will, of course, continue to work in this direction and I wouldn't be in this starting point if it wasn't for those reference images. I will continue working on my own having into account all the limitations of the technique. For example, if I want to make a piece that looks more or less like this one, yes, again, don't worry, just draw they have to be really rough sketches. It's important that we draw a lot and we will polish them later. If I want to make internal lines, as we already learned, I will need to have at some point of the line a hole. I cannot do this the way it is. I need to think. I want to make a line here, but maybe I will add a point at each extreme. Look how in this case, the limitation of the technique is becoming a friend to me, because I think that this will look really nice and beautiful. Then here I don't need to add any points because I am entering from the edge of the piece, so this is about the limitations of the technique. Then another comment I would like to make to you, it's like, for example, in this case, when I was already deciding that this will be a pendant, then it's important to know that beforehand because here I will have to drill a bigger hole through where my jump ring can go through. Also, for example, I can say, I'm going to design a pair of earrings that is composed of two parts. For example, I will do something like this, and then here there's a circle. But in order to connect these two parts with a jump ring, I will need to drill a hole here and a hole here. Then this part will also need to have a hole through where my French hoop will pass. These are things that it's good to contemplate from the beginning so that you can have these things noted down for when you are executing your work in metal. Now I'm just going to keep this here and I'm going to continue designing. I'm going to start drawing a lot until I find a piece or a shape that really talks to me and I want to polish with my tracing paper to arrive to my final design. I think I'm getting there. As you can see, I started with very rough sketches, and then, for example, I found that this shape that I really liked, so then I said, well, I want to bring this back and maybe try it a little bit more long because I like long earrings. Then I traced it and included another detail like a negative space here. I really like this one and I ask myself like, how could it look like a pendant? Instead of doing it so long and thin, I did a little bit more broad, and here also are different versions. Of course that at all times I am thinking of the limitations of the technique that's why these internal lines over here have a little dot. If I have these little dots here, I could also think of maybe adding some little decoration. Like for example, using B pin and just adding some little bits. This is something that you can definitely ask yourself while you are designing, then when you are assembling the piece, you can try it out if you like it better without them, you can leave them out, but it's good to already start thinking about all of these things. Now I think that for this class I will maybe work with this piece because of the size, I think that it's the biggest and it's better to start working with a piece that is not so small because to manipulate small pieces, it's a harder work. I will start working on this design and polish the design as much as possible with layers of tracing paper until I find the final design that I want to translate into metal. This is a bit of a detailed work, so now, we care about the trace of our pencil and to make tidy lines, but I will now start taking care of that. For example, these parts are all more or less the same, and I will start to polish my design in layers. Once you arrive at your final design, trace it with a permanent marker. It should be thin, and then we will trace it once more to create a template that we will use to translate that design into metal. Always keep documentation of your designs, meaning you should never use your original hand sketches to pierce your metal pieces, you can either scan it or trace it as I'm going to do just now. Done. In the next lesson, you are going to pierce your design. Have your tools ready, and a lot of pencils. 8. Hand Pierce Your Design: It is time to start sewing. Remember that little exercise we did together in previous lesson. Now is the time to put all that into practice. But before we start, we need to attach the design to the metal. Let's do it. What I do is I cover the whole piece of paper with the double-sided tape. Doesn't matter if the double-sided tape goes a little bit outside, we will cut it later. But it's important that the whole piece of paper is covered by double-sided tape. I do this. Now, we will attach our design to the middle piece. To do so, we're just going to peel off this and attach it. Just make sure that the material is clean so that the design will stay attached the whole process, so just make sure and we will stick it. Perfect. I will look at my design to understand what are the things I need to do first. In order to pierce this negative space here, I will have to drill a hole inside of it at any point. In order to make these internal lines, I will also need to drill a hole for each of them plus the whole of the jump ring. What I will do next is I will first punch the little holes with the punch steel that will guide my drill bit later. I will do this little pilot holes. Now that we have our pilot holes we have to drill. Remember to wear your safety goggles, to have the [inaudible] so that we can lubricate our drill bit. In order to do the holes, I will go back to my bench pin. Just remember like we did last time, the drill bits should always stay perpendicular to the metal sheet. You can use these finger to help keep the equilibrium Ready. I just drilled all my holes with a one millimeter drill bit. In the case of these four points here, I would like to most probably use them as decoration. I want that they are a little bit bigger than that. Also, the one for the jump ring. The jump ring is made of one millimeter of wire, so I definitely need a bigger hole. What I'm going to do next is I'm going to change my drill bit and I'm going to enlarge the holes from 1-1.4. I will change drill pin and again that's perfect. We're done with our hand drill for now. I will put it aside. It's done to start sewing. We will start by passing all the negative spaces because in this way, we will have all the metal that is surrounding the piece to graph our metal against the bench pin. We are going to be able to work more comfortably. We start with the negative spaces and the details, and later on we will pierce the contour of the piece. I will thread my metal through the blade as we did in previous lessons and attach my blade correctly and firmly and we're ready to go. As you might realize, the marker is thicker than my blade. You need to make a decision like whether you're going to go outside the line, in the middle of the line or inside. I recommend that you go a little bit outside if it's possible instead of inside, as you can always file the material that exceeds later, but you cannot invent new material when you cut part of the design. I'm going to try to keep the middle of the line always in my case. First, I go from the hole until the line Once I am there, I start cutting. Remember to keep the hand relaxed at all times Keep the up and down movement and guide the sew but without doing forward pressure I am arriving to a corner. Again, once I get there, I will do smaller movements with my blade and start rotating the pierce In order to sew the internal lines, these lines are intended to be decoration. Instead of using blade number 2, I'm going to change to a blade number 4 so that the line is a little bit thicker. I will detach my number 2 blade and grab a number 4. You place first in the top nut very firmly. The blade is perpendicular, that's fine. Before putting the down nut, I'm going to thread my blade through the hole again and secure the blade in the down nut. Now I'm going to just sew this line. I've finished with my internal lines, so I can change the sew blade again and use the 2.0 that I was using before because this is the right size of blade for the 0.8 millimeter metal sheet we are using. Teeth are positioned correctly. I can of course, enter through wherever I want. I will try to enter here and just cut it in one go but if you, maybe at the beginning, when you are starting sewing and you need to practice, sometimes it's better or also depending on the shape of your design, sometimes it's better to maybe enter, cut a little piece, enter again, and go out again. Of course, that's on you to decide and you will feel it if the material is giving too much resistance because of the shape of the design, then you can go out and enter through another side of the metal again, you can decide. I will just enter here. Again as we did in our exercise, to enter the metal, you press the metal sheet firmly against the bench pin and with your thumbnail, you help yourself and you do some upstrokes. first and then you start. That should be fine. As I had to change my blade because it broke, I will need to enter again the design as it's very difficult to go through the whole line with 10 blades, so I would rather just cut again here and start where I left. As you can see, I am in a critical place here because I have to turn almost 360 degrees to go on with my design and I do it by doing very tiny strokes and rotating my piece while I do it. Almost there. I'm about to finish. This is very important. When you are arriving to the very end, be sure you don't have your fingers on front of the blade, because when you arrive to the endpoint, the sew blade might probably go forward very quickly and if your fingers are there, believe me, it won't be nice, so be sure that your fingers are behind the blade. I'm done. Congratulations. You hand pierced your first jewelry piece. In the next lesson, we will file and polish our pieces. Have your files, sanding paper, and polishing cloth ready. 9. Filing & Finishing Your Jewelry Piece: Our jewelry piece is almost ready, and in this lesson we're going to make it shine. First, we need to detach the tracing paper that is left. You can do this by hand with the help of a cutting knife or using acetone. I will do the second option because I am lazy. I will pour some acetone to this little glass, and while I wait a few minutes until the acetone does its work, I will explain to you how we're going to file and polish the piece. The filing and polishing has three steps. First of all, we're going to use our saw blade because something I didn't tell you yet is that our saw frame is the tiniest file we have. We first use it to retouch some things that didn't go so well in the cutting of the piece. For example, the corners, we can sharpen them and this is a great tool to do that. Afterward, we will file all the edges. We will use our tiny files to smooth all the edges that somehow have all the traces that the saw blade left. All these little lines that you see around your piece, we will make them disappear with our files. Also with the files, we can improve the shapes if the saw blade did a little of a mess, or if at some parts of the design you were not able to perfectly follow the line, so that we will also fix with our files. Lastly, we are going to use our sanding paper of all different grids to polish the piece. The last stage is the polishing cloth. Here there's something I would like to explain quickly while my piece gets ready. We have different grids from 400 until 2,000. If you don't have 2,000, I think that 1,200, it's already okay. What we're going to do is we're gonna start with the smaller number that is the biggest grain of sandpaper, let's say. We're going to start with 400 and we are going to sand the piece always in a straight line in one direction. We're going to do it constantly and then when we see that the piece has been perfectly sanded and that we only see lines in the direction we were sanding, we are ready to change to the next sandpaper. I will choose my 800 and I will turn my piece 90 degrees, and I will do the process again. The reason why we do this is that this will let you check that you had polished good enough with the grid you're using and that you're ready to pass through a second state or to the third or to the fourth. You will be able to check if all the lines have been erased by the following grid of a sandpaper. I will show you this later more in detail, but I wanted to explain that it is important to turn your piece 90 degrees when you change sandpaper, and while you do it, you will understand better. Let's see if this has been already. Yes, it's done. I wouldn't just help myself with this file to take out the tracing paper. First I would like to tidy up these two little corners inside of my negative space. To do so, I will use my saw frame, and to tidy up those corners I will just very carefully start filing them. I can do it from both sides at the same time so that these corners become really real corners. That's fine. Now I will adjust my saw frame again and I will just clean up these small places between the shapes. If I tilled my saw frame a little bit, I can use it like a file. It's okay, I think it's good to go with the files now. I will just leave my saw frame at the side and I was started working with my files. What's important is to choose the right file for the work we are doing. For example, if I am going to be filing here this curve, I will most probably want to use this tool that has art curve here as well and if I am filing a straight line, I will probably want to use these flat surface or this other tool that I really love that has a file on this side and here there's no file. The square one is very good for corners. In case you were not able to do them sharp enough with your saw frame, you can also use these corners to sharpen up your corners. You can also use a bigger file if they are big things to improve in the contour of your piece. For example, I will start by using this one and filing the contour. The piece should always be resting against the bench and you should grab it firmly. A new file with straightforward movements trying to accompany the whole shape of the piece. I will try to use this big one just for the contour here and all the rest, I'm going to file it with the small files. As we departed from our hand sketches, of course, the hand sketch was not perfect and we are not aiming to arrive to perfection, but to keep this roughness and this crafty look. But what I definitely want by filing is to erase all of these traces that my saw frame left. I'm going to start doing that. I will start with my little files, this should not take so long. You just need to erase traces of your saw. What it is important is that you hold your piece firmly to the bench pin, but you can find your own way, like for example, sometimes I like to put up in order to better see the contour and be able to work on that and improve imperfections. But the rest of the time sometimes I'm rotating in different places. You can find what's best for you and more comfortable. Remember, you file until you cannot see the traces of your solid anymore. I think I've pretty much finished with my filing, before passing to the sanding paper, I want to show you these little sanding paper sticks. They are really inexpensive, you can buy them or do them yourself. It's not so difficult to do them, you just need to wrap a wooden stick with sanding paper, but they are really inexpensive so maybe it's sometimes better to save the work. In order to finish those edges, we're just going to sand the edges with the sanding paper so that it will be absolutely shiny and with no traces at all. This should be very quick because you did a good job with your files already. There's almost no trace, so this is just to make it really smooth. This is a 400 grit, I think it's perfect for this job. We finish with our sanding sticks and we're going to start the process of sanding our pieces with the sandpaper. I will just incorporate my chair to work more comfortably and I will tidy up. I will check up that my sanding paper is in order, so 400, 8, 400, 800, 1000, 200, and 2000. I will start so I will grab the 400 grit sandpaper, I will check that there's nothing in my table and I will start sanding. Now, I can see that the traces of the sanding paper are all over the piece, and this means that I am done with this side of the pendant, so I will continue with the other one. Here, I would like to show you some little secret. I mean, my piece is a little bit small, this works better with bigger pieces. But you can use paper tape to make a little handle that will help you through this process easily. We are ready to continue with the next sandpaper. As you can see, as we were always sanding in one direction, the sanding paper had drawn or made these lines in my metal. Now I'm going to sand in the opposite direction. Then the sanding paper of the following grid will start drawing lines in perpendicular to these ones, and I will only stop when I don't see these lines anymore. I will change the sanding paper now and start sanding with my 800. Now I do it in this direction. For example, here, I already see the lines that these sandpaper did, but I still see some in the opposite direction, that's why we are turning our piece 90 degrees because it helps us realize when it's the right time to change the sandpaper to the following grid. I still have to work on this one to erase these few lines that are there left so I will continue. I'm ready, now we only need to use our polishing cloth to polish our piece. We will do that also as quick as we can Now you can do it in circles, last touches, and we're done. There is some polishing paste on the piece, you can wash it with a little bit of soap and maybe an old toothbrush, and this will just go away. Yeah, we're done. Now that our pieces are looking good and shiny, we only need to assemble them to turn them into wearable objects. In the next lesson, we will do this together, prepare your pliers and findings. 10. Assemble Your Brass Piece Into a Wearable Piece of Jewelry: [MUSIC] We are almost there. In this lesson, we will assemble our jewelry piece. You will need jewelry findings and if you like, you can also use some tiny stones or pearls that can be attached as decoration. I also brought some chains and nylon threads of different colors and of course, your set of pliers. Assembling the piece is part of the design process. You can think of some aspects before hand, or you can leave it all for the end and start trying some things out until you arrive at the result that you are happy with. Regardless of how you decide to assemble your jewelry piece, I would like to explain to you the most important things you need to know. I will show you how to add a jump ring to your pendant. I will also explain to you how to add little stones or pearls with a bead pin and how to attach a French hoop to an earring. I will show you these three things and with them you will be able to do all sort of jewelry. [MUSIC] I will explain to you next how to add a jump ring to your pendant. As we are not soldiering for this project, I recommend that you use a sturdy jump ring to ensure that it will stay closed. This one here, it's made of one millimeter brass wire and I did it myself, but you can definitely buy them. What we're going to do is we're going to use two chain pliers. We grab it with the aperture up and with the other plier, we make with one plier, movement forward and the other one backwards. This is how we open jump rings to be sure that they will not be deformed. Now I have this aperture and we can pass the jump ring through the whole of our pendant but it's big enough because we made sure that it was bigger than the wire of the jump ring. Now we close it and to close it, we do the same thing. We just do backwards and forwards movements with the pliers and close it. Now my jump ring is closed and secured and it is steady enough to stay closed even though I won't soulder it for this project. Now I just need to decide whether I'm going to use a green nylon thread, oh that looks really cute, or a golden one, or this beautiful very fine chain that I have. This chain is silver, gold plated, and as you can see, it matches the color of the brass perfectly. I think I'm going to use this one for this project. I will just pass one of the extremes of the chain through the jump ring and ready. My necklace is done. But before we finish this lesson, I would like to explain to you two more things that you might need to assemble your pieces because maybe I decided to do a necklace for the class, but maybe you did a pair of earrings or something else, so I want to show you two more things. In this case, you will need a rounded nose plier. I will explain to you next how to add a French hoop to your earrings. This is the French hoop. This is how it comes. You just need to open these so you will insert your pliers through it and open it. You put your earrings through the French hoop and close it again. Make sure that you close it well enough so that your earring will be secured. [NOISE] Lastly, I would like to show you how to add decoration to your designs if you like to. For that, I have here some bead pins. This can be found like these ones with a little bowl on one of the extremes or with a flat surface on one of the extremes. I definitely prefer these ones, but both are useful. I will show you how to do it. I prepared this earrings. These are one of the signs that I drew throughout the class and design throughout the class. I would like to put a little bead or pearl here hanging as decoration. That's why I drilled this hole here. That's what I'm going to do now. I have to graph one bead pin on my rounded nose pliers and so I have to get a little pearl or whatever you want to decorate your jewelry with, and I will just put it through. Now I need to create a hoop and for that I'm going to help myself with the rounded nose pliers. First of all, I graph my pearl and I move the wire 90 degrees. Then I just press with my plier at the point that is not so far away from the point because I don't want to make such a big hoop. I want to make a small one so that it looks delicate so I will just do this and turn the wire around it. Now I have these and I need to cut it. What's remaining I don't need it so I cut it. [NOISE] Now I just need to do this a little bit more perfect. I need to open it now after having closed it in order to put it in my earring and then I close it again [NOISE] and that's done. I am very happy with how my pendant looks and I think I don't want to add extra decoration to it. I could definitely add some little stones like I did here, but I like this one as it is. What do you think? [MUSIC] We're almost done with our class. In the next lesson, I'm going to say goodbye and thank you. [MUSIC] 11. Final Thanks: [MUSIC] Thank you so much for taking my class, and congratulations for finishing your first jewelry piece. I hope that you leave this class feeling proud of what you've created and inspired to keep on practicing. This is just the beginning of an amazing journey that is jewelry making. I really hope that this class has inspired you to continue learning new techniques. Please take some photos of your jewelry pieces and publish them into the project and resources section so we can take a look at what you did. I cannot wait to see your designs. If you want to get notified about my upcoming classes, do not forget to press the little button up there that says follow so we can keep in touch. Thank you very much and hope to see you next time. [MUSIC]