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Mixed Metal Mania
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Mixed Metal Mania makes metalworking accessible to everyone. For jewelry designers who crave something distinctive, this exciting book is a dream come true. Created for jewelry makers who want to combine wire, and mixed metal in their designs, this book by Kim St. Jean teaches cold connections, simple soldering, foldforming, etching, and wirework. Learn to make more than 30 exceptional projects, including pendants, linked bracelets, bangle bracelets, rings, pins, and more. One glimpse of these innovative designs and you’ll want more!

•Over 30 projects from an innovative jewelry artist
•Projects feature copper, brass, silver, and steel
•Incorporates a wide range of techniques for distinctive pieces
112 pages • 380 color photos
Price: $21.95
Product Number: 64162
ISBN: 9780871164162
Carton Quantity: 36
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If you've been making jewelry for a while, sooner or later you will probably wish to venture into some metal smith techniques such as hammering, soldering and riveting. The latest book I received from Kalmbach Publishing is just the ticket to learn more.

Mixed Metal Mania: Solder, rivet, hammer, and wire exceptional jewelry by Kim St Jean stands out among the many metal smith books I have seen. That's because she is also a highly experienced teacher, a veteran of many sold-out workshops at different venues.

Most jewelry book authors know how to write good tutorials. But Kim is able to deliver much more than just instructions and gorgeous inspiring projects - she shares all the tips and tricks, shortcuts and information that really do help learners. In other words, she truly understands where beginners are coming from. A hallmark of an excellent teacher is nothing is assumed of the learner.

One example of her thoroughness, is her extensive section on tools. She explains what the tools you need are and more importantly what they are used for. While a self-proclaimed tool junkie, she is not a tool snob either. Her tool collection has been slowly amassed over the years, often secondhand and in some cases, free. If you look at the lower left picture, her hammers are hanging on a tree stump - the perfect surface for hammering metals as the wood absorbs the striking energy and reduces "kick-back".

Her workshop is a very model of organization! Most are small tools. The more expensive items would be the flex shaft and rolling mill. She also advocates the use of makeshift tools. Indeed this section entitled, Kim's Unconventional Tools, was a delight to read. One creative solution is the clothespin which she uses as a bezel pusher and to hold pieces safely while hammering! Wooden clothespins do not scratch metals.

Her book is thorough. She even has a page on Basic Tool Kits where she illustrates the groups of tools needed for tasks such as fold forming and stamping metal. In the Basic Techniques section, she covers all forms of riveting and making holes.

Instructions for lashing (cold connection technique using wire to "sew" together metal pieces), soldering, patina creation, how to tumble and even how to etch metals are included despite the lack of an accompanying project for that method. This form of etching uses ferric chloride and rubber stamps with Stazy On inks for the resist is not difficult at all. Kim even covers how to neutralize and safely dispose of the solution when you are done with it.

Kim's original designs are funky and fun. Some may not like the look of the darker pieces or even copper but the whole point of her book is to learn especially if you cannot attend her workshops, and beyond that, it's an excellent resource book to have handy. I know I will be referring to it frequently.

Kim St Jean wants to make sure that you master the basics of metal work. To that end, she does a masterful job in the new Kalmbach Press book, Mixed Metal Mania, showing you in great detail just how to accomplish dozens of basic metal techniques. From various cold connections to using flames, foldforming, finishing and everything in between, Kim's book is a resource that anyone working in metal will want to have.

Even if you are a complete beginner, Kim makes metal work seem really doable. She has structured the projects in the book to build one after another upon the basics that she teaches. As a popular workshop teacher, Kim knows how to explain and organize. Does metal work seem overwhelming to you? It won't seem quite so daunting once you've taken a stroll through Mixed Metal Mania!

What about if you are an experienced metal worker? Kim's personal tips, sprinkled liberally throughout the book, are probably worth the price right there. But add to that some advanced projects that are unique and intriguing...well, you get the idea. I think you'll want this book too.

I have to admit that as a tool junkie, I enjoyed the stroll through Kim's studio most of all. And I thought that I had a lot of tools!

As a lot of beaders get more and more into making jewelry, some of them find they want to learn metal working techniques to expand their art.

This book covers a lot of basic metal working techniques.

The author starts with her tools, listing tools that are used in metal working. A lot of them maybe things you already have, some will be things you might have to buy. There is also a page on unconventional tools, things that aren't generally in a jewelry makers tool box that she's found handy to have on hand. The tools are described including a description of how she uses them. The tone is conversational and easily understood.

Also in the introduction are the basic tool kits you'll need for some techniques and very well photographed and explained instructions for working with metal. If you're interested in cold joins, this includes rivets, wire wrapped loops and lashing. Also covered are sawing,drilling holes in metal, soldering with chips of solder, heating and folding, and finishing techniques. The last page in the introduction is a page of tips.

As someone who has worked with metal including hot techniques on and off for the last 15 years, the techniques are explained well and it is a good introduction for a beginner. The explanation of torch types is helpful and the photos and instructions for how to solder are detailed.

Then into the projects. Each of the projects lists the tool kit and techniques needed. While some of them may not be your personal style, the author likes bold, artistic pieces, the basic ideas can be adapted to your style easily. The cigar band adjustable ring can be made narrower with a simpler design stamped into it for example. Some projects use all cold techniques, some use a combination of hot and cold. Most of the projects use less expensive metals like copper and steel which is just wonderful for people who are just learning, especially given the price of silver these days!

In my personal opinion, this is a lovely book for people just starting in working with metal, and it's one that will have a place on my shelf. I'll be teaching my son metal working techniques from this book. The bold pieces are inspiring to him as well as me. The Nightmare Catcher with it's pierced and sawed skull lashed into a frame of wrapped wire is one of his favorite projects.I like the Urban Pinecone with it's dapped and drilled copper circles, and the same techniques used to make that could also be used to make custom end caps for big, special lampwork beads.

-Shala Kerrigan, BellaOnline

Mixed Metal Mania: Solder, Rivet, Hammer, and Wire Exceptional Jewelry is a recommended pick for any crafts collection where metalworking is of interest. The author is a metalworker who offers the basics about tools, materials, and easy projects and she uses hundreds of step-by-step photos to build techniques of metalworking, from forging to wiring and soldering. Any jewelry-making collection will find this specific and inspirational.

-Midwest Book Review

Kim St. Jean is an extraordinary jewelry designer and teacher. This book is loaded with useful information and stunning metal jewelry that is extrememly cool and contemporary. Start at the beginning with a detailed list of tools and materials, as well as an introduction to basic techniques such as cold connections, sawing, piercing, soldering, and creating findings. Then, work your way through countless projects like the Antler Pendant, formed by soldering and riveting; the Sweat Soldered Negative Space Earrings, which features sweat soldering, using a jeweler's saw, texturing, making ear wires, and patina; and the Copper Collar, which is formed by annealing, hand forming, and a rolling mill. Each project has exceptionally clear instructions and a corresponding photo for each and every step. Kim makes this book suitable for beginners, yet advanced metal workers can easily expand off the ideas and add to their designs. The 27 projects within this book will start you off with, or add to, a gorgeous jewelry collection.

-Belle Armoire Jewelry, Cynthia Levens
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