Back in 2005, Lark’s senior editor handed me an advance copy of The Penland Book of Jewelry and said, “Congratulations on your Masters thesis.” She was joking, of course, but her comment was somewhat true.
I had never worked on such an ambitious project, and I had many reservations. Coordinating 10 authors and 10 photo shoots, each in a different city, was daunting. (I had to buy a wall-sized dry erase board just to manage the details!) The final product, however, exceeded my expectations and remains one of my favorite books to this day.
Fast forward six years…and, drum roll, please…The Penland Book of Jewelry is now available in paperback! (One of those fancy Flexi-bind paperbacks that stays open flat on your bench.)
The book includes many red-hot techniques, such as electroforming, die forming, casting, and fabricating with steel, all presented by celebrated metalsmiths who have taught workshops at The Penland School of Crafts.
The table of contents reads like a “Who’s Who” of American studio jewelry.
• Marilyn da Silva Nontraditional Color on Metal • John Cogswell Forging • Jaime Pellisier Alloying • Rob Jackson Fabricating with Steel • Heather White van Stolk Casting • Jan Baum Die Forming • Tom McCarthy Alternative Stone Setting • Maria Phillips Electroforming • Mary Ann Scherr Etching • Douglas Harling Granulation •
Each chapter begins with an introduction that covers the author’s history, journey, and growth as a maker. Next, each chapter offers a hands-on, highly illustrated, and beautifully photographed guide to the technique they have mastered. Finally, each chapter closes with a gallery of inspiring images by other jewelers utilizing the featured technique.
If you wish to take your skills to the next level, learn a new technique to add to your repertoire, or simply see some fantastic jewelery makers at work, The Penland Book of Jewelry is just the ticket.
PS: The Penland School of Crafts offers short, one- and two-week workshops in the summer and 8-week workshops in the Fall and Spring. To see Penland’s Summer 2011 jewelry and metal workshops, click here. For their iron workshops, click here.
Have you ever taken or taught a workshop at Penland? Share your memories in the comment box!