Jewelry making classes can range from beading and knots to creating professional wedding rings by melting gold down into bars and setting gemstones in it. Below are 4 classes that hit the whole range.
1. Pulseras ni Kim
Pulseras ni Kim offers workshops for crafters centering around jewelry stamping. It’s a quick and easy way of creating jewelry which doesn’t require a torch, which is a major stumbling block for most jewelry makers. Instead, you cut metal sheets and punch inspirational quotes onto it.
There is a monthly group session at Craft Central North Edsa and you can arrange a private session with friends (an idea I love). She also offers workshops through Craft Manila.
Gemlab is a jewelry school in San Juan that was established in 1986, and continues to offer classes today. They have classes on jewelry manufacture, appraisal, design and plating for which a certificate is offered afterwards.
Their Jewelry Manufacture course is 66 hours every other day for 3 hours a day. The class size is 4 to 8 and starts from basics.
It’s pretty expensive at 100,000 for the class but it is the most professional of the classes that I have seen and they offer a more rounded curriculum, with an introduction to the equipment required and alloy composition. Projects are the basic ring, bangle, pendant, solitaire ring, dangling earrings, creolla earrings, and then a jewelry set. For the hours it offers, it is pretty packed.
To put what I wrote into perspective, a jewelry manufacture class abroad is often for at least a year (GIA in San Diego or artisan craft jewelry in Florence) and some of the more advanced projects can take 66 hours. My last 4 projects each took 2 or three weeks or about 60 hours each. Earlier projects weren’t so bad at maybe 10 to 15 hours.
The projects that they put together for the curriculum cover the essentials, but I think for gem setting it would take quite a bit more time. There is also no time for engraving or casting, both of which can really enhance the overall look of the piece.
Still, if I were doing it all over again, maybe I’d start here, in the absence of cheaper alternatives.
Also, they are pretty easy to talk to, and do respond to emails. A big plus for working people is that they do have saturday classes so they do pick up the phone on the weekends.
It’s long been rumored that TESDA has a jewelry manufacture course. I see traces of it online and even my jewelry equipment supplier mentioned that an instructor of theirs comes by every so often.
However, as with many rumors, I haven’t been able to find the Jewelry II course in the TESDA Women’s Center website. Their contact information is below. I suggest calling, because when I sent them an email I never got a response.
What I’d love to do though is to see if I could get one of their instructors to offer private classes. I love the flexibility of that.
Phone: 887-7777 or 817-4076 to 82 local 278
3. Soul Flower
I’ve written about Soul Flower before here. Sadly, I wasn’t able to go because it was quite far and they didn’t offer stone setting. Still, I think for metal smithing hobbyists, they are the most reasonable and simplest class to start with.
I do love her idea of making your own wedding bands, which I think is such a personal, wonderful thing.