Over the last week, I've just discovered two amazing resources for jewellers which are based in Scotland.
I've been working - as many of you know - on my "Fashion:Victim" piece for the ACJ "ICONS" show which is being held later in the year and that about ten days ago, I took delivery of a carved-wax snake from one of my students, Carol Docherty:
She does a lot of wax-carving and as this is bigger than my usual casting, I decided that I couldn't afford to have it fail and that I would use an external casting company and went with Carradale Gold Foundry in Argyll to do it. Not only were the ridiculously easy to deal with but they were incredibly fast too, the finished casting being back on my desk in 7 days:
I recommend them!
Today I jumped on my bike and headed across the city to the West of Scotland Mineral and Lapidary Club - who don't have a website! - after meeting the organiser of the club, Alan Gilchrist at Maira's gemstone event in college last week. I went along with one of my students, Inness, who has an idea for a rather special project which will involve custom-cutting a gemstone and both of us signed up as members there and then to start work on learning to cut stones next week.
The club is based in an old school building in Knightswood, Glasgow, and has the most amazing equipment available for the members to use, from enormous slab saws to faceting machines. Here you can see Alan demonstrating a slab saw to Inness:
Some of the belts and laps:
And they also have some quite sophisticated jewellery-making equipment:
I was very pleased to see how incredibly easy it is all going to be...
And after the engraving-frenzy of the weekend, I completed all of the leaves I had to do: