Jewelry Making with Jen

I'd almost forgotten to post some photos from our Art and Soul Classes!  tsk...tsk..indeed!   So let me say that originally I was attending this retreat alone and was taking a 2-day workshop with my dear friend Jen Crossley and teaching my one day painting class.  Jen and I met at Art and Soul Portland in October when we took a night class together with enameling Jean.  Jen had me at "hello".  You see, she's Australian.  Yep.  I could eat her accent up with a silver tea spoon.  She's uber talented with the jewelry making too, so I was ALL set to take her class and build some mad new jewelry skills myself. 

But then the world turned upside down at home and I decided to take Mailey with me.  A huge risk, since these retreats are geared toward women folk trying to escape children, husbands and other worldly things.  But me being me decided to just do it (I didn't really tell anyone I was doing this prior).  I emailed Glenny and said I needed to change my classes up a bit and then showed up with a cute little "helper" named Mailey.  Thursday night Mailey and I walked around and found Jen who was immediately drawn to my wee one.  So I asked, "Hey Jen, could Mailey and I take your night class tomorrow?  She's wicked with her hands....even a blow torch?"  "Sure" (in a fabulous accent mind you!)  And she gave Mailey a little clip Koala bear and candy treat.  And that's how it ALL started.  

After teaching all day, Friday night we appeared with no tools and a load of anticipation of what we were to make!  Mailey was up when demonstrations were made, asked no questions and just went to work.  She was a dream student.  I was the nerd running around wondering what I was supposed to be doing!  Of course this had a little something to do with my socialization issue....haha...

She had the bench pin attached to the table and was filing her metal before I'd even opened my goodie bag.  And where I had to wipe off my stamped image to etch several times Mailey had hers ready and in the etchant in no time.  We were making a little book necklace BTW.  I did have to tear all the paper, but mostly because at this point in the night Mailey was socializing.
I was in awe of her little spirit absorbing it all.  And when we were the LAST students to leave with our books I couldn't have been more tickled with what we'd made and how poised she had been throughout the class.  Those of you that really know Mailey, I AM NOT fibbing at all on this story.  It was freaky the way people were drawn to her.  How she could just carry on conversations with adults.  I decided she was determined to act all grown up because she was the only one under the age of like 18 there and she sure didn't want to look foolish herself.  So she rose to the occasion peeps.  She made me so proud!!!
So here we are with dear Jen below....whom I adore...adore...adore.  And after walking around Saturday and Sunday am kicking my backside for removing myself from her class.  Because they made the most amazing stuff.  New stuff I'd never seen before.  And honestly I think Mailey could have handled it.  And imagine the skill set she'd have a age 10!!  No telling where she'd be at 18 with that as a base.  Oh well, next time no doubt we'll be in her classes!
Here's a close-up of the necklaces.  We etched the metal book spine, hammered its' shape, attached all the pages with the rivets and topped it with a copper mesh sheet and a vintage tin type attached with wire.  Mailey carefully chose the top hat boy where I chose the two boys.  I intend to attach a little bubble gum  gun charm to mine.  It just says that to me....

This was just ONE class.  We ended up taking 3.  Whew on the pocketbook.   I'd have paid a million bucks for the joy it brought us though.  More on that later.  For now I hope you enjoyed a bit of our first experience in the classroom as Mother/daughter.  

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