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I had taken a class from the author & bought the Simply Solder Art Kit that she sells on her website simplyswank. She is very friendly & talented willing to share all her ideas and techniques. That said, I have been waiting anxiously for this book. It has surpassed my expectations! It is like a reference manual to soldering. While soldering has been around for ages her approach is more for the artist using only safe materials and techniques. Her style is differnt than other solder artists in that it is more modern & contemporary, the jewelry is very stylish and something you can actually wear. Some soldered creatitons are better left as art and not worn (just my oppinion and style choice!) There are also some artsy projects too not just jewelry. The best book I have found for learning how to create soldered jewelry and art. Cant wait for the next book!
Ok so I have been soldering projects off and on for years using hand me down equpment and never really taking a class. I think my work is pretty good and so do others who have purchased it! I figured I knew it all already but this book sparked my interest. I was not dissapointed!
You can teach an old dog new tricks! The techniques, tools and materials sections gave me a whole new perspective on how to make my soldered creations easier and look even better! Just by changing the type of iron I was using and tip made a huge difference! The innovative designs using unique embellishements jump started my creative juices!! I particularly liked the use of cabochons and other bead materials to create very stylish pieces. I am so tired of all the collaged charms that have flooded the market place, finally some new ideas to use with the stuff I already have in my studio!! To sum it all up wether you are new or an old hand at soldering this book will guide and inspire you to new heights of creativity!
This is the book to get if you want to know how to actually make soldered glass jewelry! The first few chapters focus on all the tools & materials what they are made of & how to use them, the next chapters are all about techniques with excellent photos showing step by step how to use the tools. Even finishing techniques to make your pieces look polished! The rest of the book has amazing photos of creative jewelery projects & other decorative items. So much inspiration you will want to make your own projects right away. Lisa had demystified the soldering process and with detailed instructions she makes it easy for you to re-create your own solder art pieces. In the back of the book are glass cutting patterns, a wire alphabet pattern & reproducible clip art to make a Layered Collage Pixie project one of my favorites! This book is a must have for any creative soul looking to try their hand at art soldering.
This book is simply fabulous! The details and descriptions make a seemingly challenging craft easy to master. The girls at Simply Swank are simply divine! So accessible and personable! True customer service! Check out their website for more goodies and instruction. The DVD that they have provides a ton of practical information on how to solder with ease and I can't wait to try out my new Simply Swank soldering kit to make all the gorgeous jewelry and decorative accessories in the book and more. The possibilities for this new idea are endless. Definitely a great book to have in your collection whether you are a jewelry artist like me or a scrapbooker, or someone who enjoys making decorations, like Christmas ornaments. Many possibilities from this one simple craft!
I purchased this book with the idea of learning how to do some simple sterling silver soldering. This book has no information on how to solder silver. It describes stain glass soldering techniques which uses a much lower temperature solder. Since I only work with sterling silver I sent the book back. However I must say that it is a very nice book. There are a lot of nice projects which look relatively easy. So if you want to make interesting jewelry that does not use semi precious or precious materials this could be it.
********************************************* Since writing the above review I have found two books that are helpful in teaching sterling silver fusing/soldering. "Silver Wire Fusing" by Liz Jones and "Step-by-Step - Jewelry Workshop" by Nicola Hurst. When I have more time I will leave fuller reviews on the pages for these books. They are both good choices, though.
I find that I am always on the lookout for new books which will help me to stretch my creativity in the jewelry design area.
This superfun and fascinating book, Simple Soldered Jewelry by Lisa Bluhm, which emphasizes a style of jewelry making which is incredibly popular, namely soldering small framed accessories such as necklaces, rings, a charm bracelet, and even some sweet household decorations, is well photographed and nicely laid out. It is easy to follow in a step by step manner which a beginner can understand in a flash, which is a great boon to any sort of reader who is interested in this popular type of soldered jewelry.
I personally have a great love of the look of soldered jewelry and have gone so far as to take a stained glass class locally to try and learn how to use some of things required when you solder. It was really helpful. This book is equally as helpful, if I had to compare the two. It has a great collection, at the beginning, of tools and explanations of the tools' uses (you HAVE to understand them ). They are not difficult to use, after you get the hang of them! After the tools, come the author's projects.
The projects are nicely conceived, and you have tons to pick and choose from. If you don't like pins, go for boxes! If you want a holiday item, Ms. Bluhm has those. If you want a fun charm bracelet (see the photo on the cover), the author has one of those for you to try your hand at, as well.
I like her use of wire, and her use of paper, and her fabulous etched glass and pearl necklace which totally appealed to me. I give her an A plus on that one.
Toward the end of the book, I think the projects get more dramatic. I noted that one, Triple Strand Transformation, was particularly fabulous.Read more ›
Lisa Bluhm has been creative all her life. As a young girl she would create her own paper dolls and works of art to adorn her parents home. As a teenager she created her own prom dress from vintage fabrics and worked in the crafting industry. As a wife and mother she has used her creativeness to enhance her family's life. Once her children were older she started working in the scrapbook industry as a teacher and product demonstrator. In 2001 she re-discovered soldering as a new way to express her creativity. Drawing on he experience with soldering as a teenager working at a jewelry store she began experimenting with soldering techniques. Realizing the products she needed were expensive, elusive and downright hazardous she sought out to develop a simpler, safer and affordable way to solder. She created the Simply Solder Art Kit and launched her company Simply Swank L.L.C. her products have been sold online and at stores across the nation. You can find her kit and supplies on her website lisabluhm.net. Lisa also travels and teaches her classes at stores and conventions. Lisa's first book was written for the first time solder artist to demystify the soldering process and inspire creativity.
Her Second book Creative Soldered Jewelry and Accesories has expanded on the basic projects in her first book giving more advanced projects to stretch your creative skills. In this book not only Soft soldering is used but hard soldering as well using a torch and Sterling Silver. The basics are covered in technique and tools for each type of soldering. A handy troubleshooting section has also been added to help address any problems or questions you may come across.
Lisa welcomes your questions and comments she can be contacted through her website.