Ceramic Jewelry Making Part 1 with Jen Allen and Maia Leppo

In this video, which is the first in our two-part series Ceramic Jewelry Making, ceramic artist Jen Allen provides an introduction into making unique ceramic jewelry. Jen covers the basics of forming clay components for custom earrings, necklaces, and ... (Scroll down for more!)


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Runtime: approximately 1 hour, 11 minutes

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… brooches. She also presents an introduction to working with store-bought and handmade metal findings to finish the pieces. This video will give you a good foundation to begin making ceramic jewelry without purchasing a lot of additional equipment.


Making Unique Clay Components

Jen begins my walking you through a number of ways to make clay components for earrings, necklaces, and brooches. All along the way she gives nifty tips such as how to make a shrinkage bar for various wire gauges, and how to roll super thin slabs to ensure earrings are lightweight. In addition, Jen stresses the importance of sketching out designs ahead of time and how the various design considerations affect the way pieces hang.

Incorporating High Temperature Wire

Jen also covers how to work with high temperature wire to create unique metal elements. You’ll learn tips for embedding the wire into the clay and firing them successfully. You’ll also find out how to add texture to the wire through hammering and which hypoallergenic metals pair best with the high-temperature wire.

Making Your Own Findings

While working with commercially made metal findings is a great way to start with ceramic jewelry, learning to make your own findings adds something extra special to your work. Jen learned shares some basic metalsmithing skills she picked up from her metalsmith friend Maia Leppo. You’ll learn how to make custom ear wires using readily available and inexpensive jewelry making tools, as well as necklace chains with high temperature wire.

The Perfect Tool for Getting Started

This video is the perfect tool if you have been thinking about delving into ceramic jewelry making, but don’t want to purchase a lot of additional equipment. Jen covers information that the ceramic artist might not be used to thinking about, which will eliminate some of the trial and error process for you.

By approaching ceramic jewelry with the combined expertise of both a ceramic artist and a metalsmith, it is our hope that this video series will help viewers broaden their notions of what ceramic jewelry can be.

If you’re interested in incorporating more advanced metalworking techniques into your jewelry making, Maia Leppo provides the information you need in part two of this series, which is due out in January 2020.

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