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Weekly classes for the Winter of 2017 at the Mountain Metalsmiths School of Jewelry & Lapidary
will begin Tuesday, January 10th, at 1 PM!

Students will learn to handle a torch safely, properly saw sheet and wire into shape,
 use files and hammers, and manipulate various metals into a piece of wearable art that can be worn by ladies or men.
 Keep them for yourself, donate them to your cause, or give them as gifts!




Weekly Class Schedule

 

Local students will have the opportunity to explore their creativity in the world of jewelry fabrication on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons or evenings. No prior experience is necessary. These are mixed skill level classes where each student is taught individually. Techniques are stressed here as we do NOT teach kits or projects. You will complete pieces of jewelry as part of the learning process.






Day Sessions: 1pm to 4pm *** Evening Sessions: 7pm to 10pm


Your 8 Week Sessions Start When You Start

 

       In the eleventh year of the Mountain Metalsmiths School, we understand that "life happens" as not everyone may not be able to start their sessions at the same time. Therefore, MMSJL is continuing a ROLLING ENROLLMENT POLICY to give everyone the same opportunity to learn. We will keep tabs on your attendance, as students may not be able to attend 8 weeks in a row due to previous commitments. Ruthie periodically exhibits at craft fairs, is teaching and/or demonstrating elsewhere so sometimes class may not be held every week. Being more USER-FRIENDLY means that you can skip a week if necessary, but your 8 sessions will not be affected. A reasonable but not indefinite extension will be allowed.   


Attendance Communication

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In case of inclement weather, classes will be cancelled if Buncombe County Schools are closed. If you are not sure, please feel free to contact the school @ 828-687-7830 or email the school at  ruthie@mmsjl.com
Since it does take time to prepare for the class sessions, we would also appreciate hearing from you by 10 am if you cannot attend a class.


What's Happening on Tuesdays?

 

Tuesday class sessions will concentrate on either jewelry fabrication or two skill levels of wax carving and casting. In the jewelry fabrication series, you will explore different jewelry techniques such as soldering, forging, sawing, filing, surface treatments, bezel fabrication, and basic stone setting. No prior experience is necessary.

The other series of classes will involve wax carving, vacuum casting via the lost wax process, which includes finishing the castings for beginners. The more experienced jeweler with stone setting and ring sizing experience via torch, will have the opportunity to learn how to carve a ring in wax, prepare it for vacuum casting via the lost wax process, and finishing the casting, setting a stone, and turning it into a wearable piece of jewelry. If multiples of a ring design are desired; before setting any stones in the finished casting, you will learn mold-making, and how to cut your own molds.

You may pick only ONE class series of 8 sessions at a time. You may choose AFTERNOONS from 1-4pm or EVENINGS from 7-10pm 
TUITION: $480 plus a $5 student lab fee or $20 per hour for 24 hours of instruction. MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 6 per session in Jewelry Fabrication, 2 per session in Wax Carving & Casting


Wednesday Sessions

 

WAX CARVING AND LOST WAX CASTING: For the more experienced jeweler, here's a once a week opportunity to explore the world of lost wax carving and casting. During the 8 class sessions, a jewelry design will be carved in wax, then vacuum cast via the lost wax process, and finished into a wearable piece of jewelry. Before setting any stones, students will learn to make a mold for reproducing the design. Due to the costs of metals jumping up sky high,we will be working ONLY in silver. 

TUITION: $480 plus a $5 student lab fee and materials or $20 per hour for 24 hours of instruction,  MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 2

 If you prefer a more hands-on approach with metal, take a weekly class in Jewelry Fabrication instead.

JEWELRY FABRICATION CLASS: All skill levels are invited to dive into jewelry fabrication on Wednesdays. Different jewelry techniques and studio safety guidelines will be covered. 
You may pick only ONE class series of 8 sessions at a time. You may choose between AFTERNOONS from 1-4 pm or EVENINGS from 7-10 pm 
TUITION:$480 plus a $5 student lab fee and materials or $20 per hour for 24 hours of instruction,  MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 6



Weekend Workshops and Jewelry Demonstrations at the Folk Art Center

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Besides hosting weekend workshops at the Mountain Metalsmiths School of Jewelry & Lapidary, Ruthie has been asked to periodically share her expertise at the Folk Art Center, the headquarters of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, mile marker 382 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, near Asheville, NC. You are welcome to come and observe techniques. Please feel free to ask questions about what you are watching. 


February 24-26: Firing Up Your Creativity

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Who says you can't design and create beautiful jewelry! Learn to saw, file, hammer, solder, and set stones into unique pieces of wearable art. We will be working in copper, brass, and sterling silver so leave your fears behind and bring your imagination and an open mind. All skill levels are welcome. Good eyesight or magnification is needed. TUITION:$360 plus materials and a $5 student lab fee or 18 hours of instruction at $20 per hour. MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 4


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


February 24-26 : Carving a Jewelry Design in Wax

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This 3-day workshop gives you an opportunity at the Mountain Metalsmiths School to carve a wax jewelry design utilizing burs,files,and even dental tools! You will learn to prepare the wax for casting,vacuum cast the design,and clean the casting to create a finished piece of jewelry to take home. We will not be using stones in this workshop so don't worry about having to set a stone in your jewelry design. Just bring your imagination and comfortable clothes. Eye magnification is advised if needed. TUITION: $360 plus materials or $20 per hour for 18 hours of instruction, MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 3 


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


March 5-10: I Made it Myself!

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Have you imagined a piece of jewelry in your head, but lack the skills to create it by hand? Or maybe your silversmithing skills are WAY too rusty? Create pendants, bracelets, or earrings in silver with a bit of tool magic. Stones will be available for setting. This workshop will be based at the famed John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC. For more info on tuition, room and board, please check out the website. John Campbell Folk School


April 21-23: An Intense 3 Day Fabrication Frenzy!

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Let's play in April with 3 day Jewelry Fabrication Celebration!! Beginners will learn to be comfortable with handling various tools such as saws, files, hammers, and the torch in a safe manner. More experienced jewelers will appreciate learning how to bezel set drusy without cracking crystals. Ruthie will show you her "file-setting method" to overcome that hurdle. Good eyesight or magnification is a must. TUITION: $360 plus materials and a $5 student lab fee or $20 per hour for 18 hours of instruction. MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 4 SORRY CLASS IS FULL


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


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May 20-21: So You Want to Play With the Orion Pulse Arc Welders

There has been a lot of discussion on the merits of using miniature pulse arc welding technology to enable jewelers to construct jewelry designs, repair broken jewelry, temporarily weld components together before soldering, repair porosities in castings, etc.  Laser welders vs Orion vs PUK vs ABI . Do you spend $30,000 for a free standing laser, $12-15,000 for a table top laser, or $2000-$8000 for a miniature pulse arc TIG welder? What are the consumables costs for each of these welders? What can each machine do or not do? Good questions and very worthwhile exploring.

  On May 20-21, the Mountain Metalsmiths School of Jewelry & Lapidary of Arden, NC is hosting a workshop with the Orion Pulse Arc Welders. If you are new to the technology, and want to check out the possibilities, COME ON DOWN!  An assortment of Orion models will be available at the school for jewelers to get familiarized with. Jewelers experienced with miniature tig welding are encouraged to bring their own PUK or Orion welders to problem solve those pesky repairs or projects that have been haunting you. WELD AWAY!  Argon is included so please bring your regulator to tie  in your personal welder. You will not have to transport dangerous gas tanks. Please bring laser wire (30 gauge) or heavier gauge filler wire in the metal you want to work with. TUITION: $150 per person, MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS:


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the jewelers a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


June 1-4: Tap Tap Tap, and Away I Go....

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A FOUR DAY WORKSHOP for students here at the Mountain Metalsmiths School. Guest instructor Norman Morgan will introduce students to the various tools and techniques used for the ancient metalsmithing art form of Chasing & Repousse'. Norman was trained in the Italian Style of chasing and repousse’ by Il Maestro Fabrizio Aquafresca whose family has been passing this technique down since the Renaissance.

Norman is dedicated to sharing his knowledge with every student whether a beginner or more advanced. Day one will include introduction to design layout, transfer, tools and techniques. It will also include metalworking properties and repairs if and when required. Day two will focus on an introductory project to experiment with tools and techniques for repousse’ and chasing. Day three and four will focus on student projects and one on one time with each student. Day four afternoon will include demonstration of how to solder a border on a cuff bracelet and forming on a mandrel if desired.

The goal for this 4 day workshop is to provide a good understanding of the required techniques to create high relief art in metal. A 4” x 4” piece of copper will be supplied as part of the course. Students may bring their own metal for their projects. Norman recommends 22ga Sterling Silver or 20ga copper. Tools will be provided for the class. Basic punch sets will be available for purchase at the end of the course if desired. TUITION: $600 MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS5



Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


August 5-6: Look Ma, No Torch Needed!

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Are you intrigued by the idea of doing repairs or fabricating jewelry without a torch in hand? Jewelers are encouraged to bring their own welders to problem solve and just WELD AWAY! If you are new to the technology, and want to put the pulse arc welder through its paces, COME ON DOWN! An assortment of models will be available at the school for jewelers to get familiarized with. Just bring laser wire (30 gauge) in the metal you want to work with, and lastly those pesky repairs or projects that have been haunting you. TUITION:$150 which includes argon MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 6


Friday, August 4th After 1PM

 

Jewelers attending this mini-workshop are encouraged to bring their welders to the Mountain Metalsmiths School to get them set up on the benches. We will have Argon tanks available; just bring the regulator for your own welder.


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


August 11-13: Playing With Shapes & Textures

 

This 3 DAY jewelry fabrication workshop will concentrate on surface textures and cutting out forms with various punches and a hydraulic press. What is a pancake die, what is an impression die? You will learn to take a repetitive form and alter it enough to create interesting and quirky earrings, pendants, and bracelets. Just a little bit of this and a little bit of that! Hammer textures, reticulation, stamping designs, cold connections and soldering will all be incorporated to create unique jewelry. TUITION: $360 plus $5 student lab fee and materials MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 4


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


Sept 8-10: Setting Unusual Stones in Wax

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For one of our last three day workshops in 2017, why not dive into a 3 day weekend workshop that will give you an opportunity at the Mountain Metalsmiths School to carve a unique setting in wax that will be cast in silver. Just bring your imagination and comfortable clothes. Eye magnification is advised if needed. TUITION: $360 plus materials or $20 per hour for 18 hours of instruction, MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS:


Morning Session: 10am to 1pm***Afternoon Session : 2:30pm to 5:30 pm

 

These hours are designed to give the student a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


September 8-10:Jewelry Fabrication Frenzy, Part 2

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OK,ok!! We have been getting so many requests for another beginner to intermediate jewelry fabrication workshop, that we have decided to squeeze one more in for 2017. Here's an opportunity to experience a 3 day Jewelry Fabrication Celebration!! Beginners will learn to be comfortable with handling various tools such as saws, files, hammers, and the torch in a safe manner. More experienced jewelers will appreciate learning how to bezel set drusy without cracking crystals. Ruthie will show you her "file-setting method" to overcome that hurdle. Good eyesight or magnification is a must. Workshops have been filling rather quickly so get that registration form in as soon as you can! Only $25 holds your space.TUITION: $360 plus materials and a $5 student lab fee or $20 per hour for 18 hours of instruction. MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS:


Morning Session: 10am to 1pm***Afternoon Session : 2:30pm to 5:30 pm

 

These hours are designed to give the jewelers a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.


Sept.23-24: Furthering Your Skills With the Orion Pulse Arc Welders

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For our last workshop in 2017, a two day weekend with the Orion Pulse Arc Welders has been scheduled. Jewelers are encouraged to bring their own welders to problem solve and just WELD AWAY! If you are new to the technology, and want to put the pulse arc welder through its paces, COME ON DOWN!  An assortment of models will be available at the school for jewelers to get familiarized with. Just bring laser wire (30 gauge) in the metal you want to work with, and lastly those pesky repairs or projects that have been haunting you. TUITION:$150 which includes argon  MAXIMUM NUMBER OF STUDENTS: 5


Friday, Sept.22 After 1PM

 

Jewelers attending this mini-workshop are encouraged to bring their welders to the Mountain Metalsmiths School to get them set up on the benches so you can dive right in on Saturday. We will have Argon tanks available; just bring the regulator for your own welder.


Morning Sessions: 10am to 1pm *** Afternoon Sessions: 2:30pm to 5:30pm

 

These hours are designed to give the jewelers a breather between sessions. There are several restaurants nearby to enjoy lunch or feel free to bring your own bagged lunch to eat at school.