If you haven't heard of C.A.R.V.E. then where have you been and what have you been doing?! This pop up workshop is the brain child of Kate (founder of Vanilla Ink) and Katie (from Katie Lees jewellery) and allows total jewellery novices to create their very own ring or pendant cast in silver!
I first had a go of this magic technique back in March where I had the opportunity to be a guinea pig in their pendant making experiment. With the closest experience to jewellery making being a friendship bracelet I made way back when, I was a little worried about how I would get on. Luckily, we live in a world where inspiration is easy to come by and C.A.R.V.E. have a great Pinterest board, filled with examples and textures to get you thinking.
You start off with a wax blank that best fits your design, whether it's a pendant or a ring that you're making. Then there is a selection of files and tools in front of you to go wild with. Every little mark made in the wax will be exactly represented in silver! So the possibilities really are endless and there is no way you can't end up with something completely original and unique to you.
Kate and Katie are on hand with years of experience to point you in the right direction and have a magic hot pen that fixes any oopsies, should there be any. (I've managed to snap each of my wax carves and they were both magically fixed by the pen!)
At the end of the 2 hour class, you have a wee pile of waxy blue dust and a tricky decision to make!
'What finish to choose for your C.A.R.V.E.d piece?' To help you decide, there is a whole bunch of examples that show you what's possible, from matt, shiny, oxidised, burnished and even a combination! You fill in your wee card with your choice and your address and leave it behind for the wizardry to happen.
I could try and explain the process of the next step but there is no need as C.A.R.V.E. has made this great wee video that explains the whole thing perfectly! SPOILER ALERT - if you want to still believe it's magic pixies that use their powers to cast a spell turning your piece of blue wax into solid silver, then don't watch the video!
Now comes the hardest bit... waiting for this little striped envelope to arrive in the post! In reality, it's only a few weeks wait but the anticipation is unreal! The first thing you'll probably notice is that the envelope feels much weightier than you'd expect from your piece of wax. Then you get to open it up and unveil the reason why! That little lump that you chiseled and filed to bits a few weeks ago is now an amazingly tactile piece of wearable silver.
TA DAH!! This is Clive, (named after C.A.R.V.E. of course.) He isn't perfect but that's why I love him. He is the only one in the world like him and every little bit of him was shaped by me. It's one of the best workshops I have ever been to and I was honoured that Harbour Lane got to host one. Stay tuned for part two of the blog post to see how my ring from last night's class turns out. But to help you (and me) to endure the wait, why not pop over to the C.A.R.V.E. website and book your own workshop place?