Elizabeth Anne Norris

Jewellery Designer / Maker

What Jewellery tools do I need ?

2 Comments

If you are thinking about making jewellery then here is some information about jewellery lessons and what jewellery tools you need. I hope you find it useful. 

My workbench and tools

My workbench and tools

With the inclination, almost anyone can teach themselves simple wire and bead jewellery at home but if you are considering doing silversmithing and jewellery i.e. metal work at a workbench then I’d say you will definitely need some lessons.

Pliers and snips

Pliers and snips

Beginner’s lessons in silversmithing and jewellery can be sought in several ways. Either look for a short evening course in jewellery and silversmithing at a local college or find a local jewellery designer who will teach you at their studio.  Evening classes are usually in a larger group and therefore less expensive and give you a good taste of what jewellery making is all about. If you can afford a bit more I’d highly recommend arranging private or small group lessons with a jewellery teacher at their studio. You learn the basic skills of jewellery making , how to use tools and so much more. Often it’s the hints and tips you can only get from your tutor in an intimate situation that you find most useful and never forget. My first jewellery lessons were with a group of 4 students taught by Jackie Jones in Brighton. It was here I fell in love with working in silver.

work in progress

work in progress

You can continue to learn silversmithing and jewellery all your life and there are countless jewellery tools for the job so once you’ve established that you want to continue learning jewellery making, either as a hobby or more seriously, you need to get yourself tooled up. Here is the list of jewellery tools for beginner’s and some photos. These are the first tools I purchased in 2002 and there still very much in working order. Ask the tool supplier if they will offer a discount for tools if you are buying a beginners set. As you progress you can add to your tools as and when you need them.

  1. Tool box
  2. Safety goggles
  3. Scriber
  4. Parallel pliers smooth jaw 5 inches
  5. Half round pliers
  6. Round nose pliers
  7. Flat pliers
  8. Shears for cutting solder
  9. Needle files (three-square, square round, flat, crossing, barette)
  10. Hand files (half round (cut 2), sage leaf/crossing (cut 2), flat (cut 2)) and handles
  11. Soldering block
  12. Borax brush/cone/dish (or auflux liquid and dish)
  13. Eclipse saw frame
  14. Saw blades (2/0 for beginners)
  15. Pair of dividers
  16. Steel ruler
  17. Spring gauge or vernier gauge
  18. Steel tweezers
  19. Emery paper (one sheet of each 2, G, 2/0,4/0,6/0,/8/0)

Photos courtesy of HSWalsh

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parallel pliers

parallel pliers

saw frame

saw frame

dividers

dividers

My recommended tool suppliers:

http://www.cooksongold.com

http://www.hswalsh.com

http://www.rashbel.com

Frank Pike 15 Hatton Wall London, EC1N 8JE

Being able to work with precious metals and make beautiful things is very satisfying. If you have any questions about what tools to get please get in contact with me at Elizabeth Anne Norris on info@eanjewellery.com.

Thanks for reading. 

Retro enamelled necklace and earrings by Elizabeth Anne Norris

Retro enamelled necklace and earrings by Elizabeth Anne Norris

Author: eanjewellery

Handmade jewellery specialising in enamel work

2 thoughts on “What Jewellery tools do I need ?

  1. This is a very useful post. Just wondering, which specific place did you get your tools from? Or did you get them from all different places?

    • Hi there in Australia ! I usually get my tools from suppliers in Hatton Garden, London like Cookson Gold or Walsh and sons. They do mail order. I’m afraid I don’t know any tool suppliers in Australia.

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