As I patiently await the arrival of the last bit of material (European cotton cord) for my cross stitched pendants, I’m looking back on what it took to bring this project from concept to reality. Working at my jeweler’s bench is one of the foundational parts of this craft and serves as a model for much of my process.
One year ago, I found a wood model outside of a dumpster. If you asked my wife, she’d tell you I have a penchant for stocking up on found wood. I knew when I found this particular wood (pine board) that it would serve a fine purpose…eventually. Little did I know it would become the starting-point for most of my work.
I took my first jewelry class in January and began to amass a modest collection of jeweler’s tools and no shortage of enthusiasm for the art. The jeweler’s bench at Creative Side became the place where my ideas turned into reality. After leaving the classroom, it was difficult to wait until the following week to get back to the jeweler’s bench.
Eventually, I realized I could not wait anymore. Thankfully, I had kept those pine boards. So armed with a cabinetmaker son’s knowledge, I built my own.
I went to the hardware store down the street and picked up the nuts and bolts necessary to piece together the bench. After a few days drilling, sanding and staining the bench was finished (but sitting on our back porch).
Once built, this jewelry bench needed a home. I had to figure out where I was going to set up shop in our apartment. When you are dealing with limited space and don’t want your cat to eat your metal scraps you have to get creative. I decided a closet studio would best fit my needs. I cleared out a spot in our guest room closet…and if I chose not to show it off to everyone who entered our house, you’d never know it was there.
Looking back on this project, I realize how fulfilling it is to bring something from concept to reality. As I continue to make new designs, study the art of metal-smithing, and experiment with new ideas, I hope to share the stories that have encouraged me along in this new endeavor.