Making a stone set ring – and plans for next term

Sadly our jewellery making class is over. It was such fun and so enlightening. And each of us made three items – two rings and a pendant. My final piece is a little cabochon set ring, made with silver wire. The cabochon is a semi spherical gem stone, and the setting is the way the stone is held to the ring. I used a ruby and Nick chose malachite. Jo, one of the other students had an amethyst. These are not high quality gems, but they are pretty and unusual.

Ruby Malachite and Amethyst
Ruby Malachite and Amethyst (front to back)

As usual there was lots of sawing and soldering, bashing and polishing.

And the end result was really marvellous. I love my new ruby ring and I wear it with my wedding ring. And Nick has a lovely set for Charlotte’s birthday. I am so pleased how our work came out, and I would really recommend this course at Morley to anyone who wants to make some really nice items and also learn basic jewellery making skills.

So what shall we do next term? You may remember I laid out the options in a previous post. And I was interested in your reactions. The vast majority went for shoe making. I am not suprised. Making shoes is such an interesting idea and creates something that can be worn to complete an outfit. I used a really nice illustration photograph and I expect that choice betrayed my own long standing interest in shoe making. While I think I have mentioned my father’s involvement in the textile industry I don’t think I have mentioned my mother’s background. Her father and brothers ran a company called Ashworths Slippers from Albion Mill in Bury Lancashire. It was established in 1938 as Ashworth’s Ltd., Albion Mills, Elton, Bury; Shoes and Slippers. Long since closed it was a place I spent many a happy day as a child. I have a deep seated love of factory life as a result of these many expeditions to see how things were made. I searched for a photograph of the mill, which I cannot find at the moment, but will look again. However I found a little piece of my family history at the Victoria & Albert Museum! Fancy!

I remember the Gymbo brand, also Raymar (made from my Uncle Raymond and my mother’s name Margaret), Chiccles (a kind of desert boot). So you wanted us to learn to make shoes and so did I.

But remember I only put things on the list that I would be happy to attend, and I sent the list to Nick.


    • Basketmaking
    • Printed textiles
    • Creative writing
    • Ballet (not a chance, but I keep putting it on the list)
    • Patchwork and Quilting
    • Jewellery Intermediate
    • Drawing and Painting
    • Millinery
    • Shoe making
    • Knitting and crochet
    • Furniture restoration
    • Saori Weaving

So what do you think he chose?

The Harlequin patchwork jacket was the inspiration for my final piece when I was doing my City and Guilds in 1987.

Final project City and Guilds

So, yes, you guessed it. Nick chose Patchwork and Quilting. I’ll let you know how we get on.


16 Responses

  1. Stephanie

    What a wonderful post, jewellery and story! There will be time to learn shoemaking. It will be very interesting to see what comes out of your next course.

  2. Annieloveslinen

    Wow! I have almost an identical ring set with a matt blue stone, I’m really impressed, yours is perfect.

    I wonder what you’ll make in patchwork? So much to look forward to as I know you’ll cascade what you learn. We’re off to patchwork class, yay!

  3. Ruth

    Interesting choice. You might want to check out Man Sewing on Youtube for a butch take on patchworking and quilting. I look forward to the outcome.
    Beautiful rings.

  4. Anne

    I liked hearing a bit about your interesting family history. I have a friend whose father was in the shoe business in Cumbria.
    I loved the jewellery and am looking forward to hearing about your next ventures. I thought it was going to be more jewellery or possibly shoes.

  5. Michelle

    Your finished jewellery is beautiful, and to be able to say that you made it yourself must be very satisfying.
    I had a quick look through some of the courses available at Morley – there’s such a wide choice. Although I’m not in a position to do an evening course just now, I’ve made a few enquiries at what’s on offer locally and have found a couple of possibilities that interest me. Maybe later in the year.
    In the meantime I’m looking forward to hearing about your patchwork and quilting course.

    • fabrickated

      Michelle – thank you. I have so enjoyed learning with others and a professional tutor over the last few years. It stimulates my creativity no end and I like the social side of learning and making, learning as much from the other students as the tutor. Morley is good but London is full of great courses; even in other cities there are good courses run by educational institutions. The standard is generally much higher than in the private sector and more reasonably priced.

  6. helen

    Looking forward to seeing your patchwork creations. Every so often when I’m in the local library I pick up a patchwork book and start to make plans but so far haven’t got started!

    • fabrickated

      I was suprised by his choice Jenny, but while I have really only been interested in patchwork for clothes Nick is keen that we make a bed cover together. Romantic, eh?

  7. mrsmole

    Some of the best quilters and quilt pattern designers are retired engineers so it is not so surprising that he would choose something so mathematical and precise. Working with fabrics and wood must have some common issues and creativity. You are one lucky girl to have a husband so talented and ready for the next new challenge! The ring is gorgeous and a real heirloom!

  8. Brenda

    It’s interesting to see the jacket you made a while ago! Did you wear it much? I hope the class next term is a good one!

    Thank you for writing about the family shoe business. That’s cool! I’d love to make shoes, and I’ve made the first step by ordering shoe lasts that will fit my narrow-in-the-back, wide-in-the-front feet.

    • fabrickated

      I never wore the jacket Brenda. It was designed as part of a wedding outfit with a long, languid white dress underneath. My teacher suggested that it could be worn with jeans, but I felt like David Bowie, and not in a good way. I am determined to learn more about shoe making at some point.

  9. Kim

    Incredible. I’m sure you will get on with your bed cover faster than I am managing with The Managements quilt for his 60th birthday. If you recall I only offered to make this as a joke – I never expected him to say that was what he wanted…

  10. fabrickated

    I was surprised Kim that he wanted to do P&Q, but right now he is really looking forward to it. Maybe, as Mrs Mole suggests, the straight lines and precision appeal to men. I hope you will get back to your man-quilt as I will be interested to see what your husband wants. Mine wants all white, so that is a challenge.

Leave a Reply