Friday, September 25, 2009

Complete Jewellery Book Review

Friday, September 25, 2009
Complete Jewellery is one of those books that not only makes jewelry appear easy to create, it gives such detailed instructions and photos that you truly believe you can do it, too. All projects are rated Easy, Intermediate, or Advanced so you know exactly what you’re getting yourself in for.

The first chapter covers tools and materials, giving a detailed explanation of both. It includes lists of and definitions for:

Basic equipment
Tools for stringing
Tools for wire wrapping as well as a gauge guide
Tools for polymer clay
Tools for textiles
Tools for advanced techniques and a small gemstone buying guide

The next chapter is on stringing, including classic bead stringing and with flexible beading wire. Several projects are then demonstrated. Next is wire wrapping. I was surprised at how clear and detailed the photographs are. I really feel like I can master wrapping a briolette, something that has always managed to escape me before. And I love this sweet little ring that is listed as one of the easy wire projects.

The next two chapters are on materials that many jewelry artists don’t work with in general. The first is polymer clay. Clay tends to be a little intimidating, I think. If it’s not done correctly you can end up looking like you’re wearing your third grader’s art project. The projects shown in the clay chapter are simple in design but high impact. The next rather unlikely material is what the book refers to as textiles. What it covers is crochet, needle-felting, and fabric wrapped beads. I’d like to adapt these needle-felted ball earrings in my own color scheme.

The last chapter covers advanced techniques. These include:
making ear wires and head pins
making French wire
using a chasing hammer to add texture
projects using gemstones

And if you’re wondering about the spelling in the title, this book is originally a title from the UK. However, there are standard measurements as well as metric ones. I didn’t see anything else in the book that would be exclusive to Britain (or Europe in general) so don’t let that hold you back from getting this great book.