New from Cool Tools….

Written by Diane Rein

New from Cool Tools
New Pliers! Choose from 3-Step, Bending/Forming, Half Round, Concave Round, Crimping and more.
Shop New Pliers
New Metal Blanks! Fun new shapes in Brass, Copper and Nickel Silver.
Shop Metal Blanks
Thompson Enamel Sampler Set – Start with this complete color sampler containing all 169 colors of Thompson medium temperature/medium expansion enamels.
Shop Sampler Set

June 8, 2016

Posted In: New Products!

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Simple Riveting System – How to Video

Written by Diane Rein

Simple Riveting System

Riveting and creating cold connections is a unique technique that adds a beautiful and raw look to your jewelry projects. However, drilling holes, and flaring rivets can be challenging and time consuming. In this tool demo, learn to use our simple riveting system, creating cold connections and riveting in a matter of seconds. Shop at Cool Tools for this product

 

May 16, 2016

Posted In: Free Video Projects

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Tim Holtz® Alcohol Inks, Blending Solution & Pen!

Written by Diane Rein

Tim Holtz® Adirondack® Alcohol Inks, Blending Solution & Pen
Acid-free, fast drying transparent coordinating dye inks specially formulated to create a colorful, polished stone effect. Alcohol inks are an intensely concentrated dye dissolved in alcohol. They are permanent and once dried, are not water soluble. These alcohol inks are perfect for metal and disperse beautifully into translucent polymer clay.

Alcohol Blending Solution was specially formulated to dilute and lighten the Alcohol Inks’ vibrant tones. Not only is this solution useful for lightening and blending the Adirondack Alcohol Ink colors, it will also remove them from slick surfaces, hands and art tools.

The Blending Pen is an empty, dual-tipped dry pen that needs to be filled with Adirondack® Alcohol Ink Blending Solution to blend and lighten Adirondack® Alcohol Inks. Use the Blending Pen with Adirondack® Alcohol Ink colors for endless creative possibilities.
SHOP NOW!

May 11, 2016

Posted In: New Products!

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New Video!

Written by Diane Rein

Gold Plating Technique by Valerie Bealle
Gold Plating Technique by Valerie Bealle
Valerie Bealle, Metal Clay Artist and Instructor from Long Island, New York visited the Cool Tools studio to demonstrate how to add 24K gold plating to fine silver. In this video Valerie accents a pendant that was created using PMC Flex and one of our popular antique molds. WATCH HERE

Valerie BealleValerie Bealle Flower Power Necklace
Artist Statement:
I have spent most of my life in a love affair with craft. My journey started when, as a child, I learned to crochet. After many doilies and two children, I graduated to creating wearable art in free form crochet. Along the way I learned to spin yarn, weave cloth, and to dye anything in sight. I started a business, “North Shore Weavers” that supplied the interior design industry with hand woven custom sofa throws, wall hangings and pillows. A serious shoulder injury ended my weaving days but my hands would not be denied. I had always liked to include beads in my crochet and weaving, so there was a natural progression to jewelry design.

It was at this point that I discovered a relatively new product called “metal clay”. It seemed like magic. I could take a lump of this clay-like substance, form it, dry it and fire it in a kiln and come away with a piece of jewelry made of pure silver. As soon as possible, I got my certification as a metal clay instructor from PMC Connection and have been teaching ever since. I love the freedom that this material offers. I can create jewelry in fine (pure) silver, sterling (92.5%) silver, copper, bronze and various other metals.

I am especially influenced by the beautiful stones that nature provides, textile designs from the bronze age, the world of high fashion and, of course, nature.

March 29, 2016

Posted In: Video Projects

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Coming Soon: Metalworking by Terri McCarthy

Written by Diane Rein

Local Metalsmith, Artist and Instructor, Terri McCarthy
Cold Connecting Textured Metal by Terri McCarthy – Get Inspired!

Local Metalsmith, Artist and Instructor, Terri McCarthy visited Cool Tools and filmed jewelry making techniques for an upcoming series of Cool Tools tutorials. The series of new videos will cover several types of soldering, working with textured metal and cold connections. On Thursday, February 4, we’ll release the first of these new instructional videos on cooltools.us and our YouTube channel. Visit Terri’s website here: http://www.terrimccarthystudios.net/

February 2, 2016

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Metalsmith and Instructor Terri McCarthy

Written by Diane Rein

Terri McCarthy is truly an inspiration!  She transformed her studio in the historic Grafton Mill in Grafton, WI and it includes an open studio classroom.  I have had the pleasure of taking classes from Terri.  Adults who have an interest in fabricating jewelry or small metal objects are welcome in her studio, for individual or group instruction.  Terri is a well respected and accomplished metalsmith in her own right as well as a talented instructor.  Her teaching style is laid back, she has a great sense of humor and gives each student the time and mentoring needed when questions arise.

Her studio is beautiful and well stocked with every metalsmithing tool you can imagine.  She routinely brings in well known artists and instructors for weekend classes. Terri offers ongoing workshops in casting, enameling, fold forming and etching, in addition to her regularly scheduled classes.  If you ever get the chance to take a class from Terri or one her invited metalsmithing guests, you’ll learn a lot and have fun too!  Terri’s website

One of the classes I took focused on etching metal.  This was a first for me.  The process was interesting and fun! Now I have some great raw material and ideas for pendants and earrings.  I used bronze and copper in this class.

Here are a few photos of some of the etched pieces I created.

Etched Copper
Etched Copper
Etched Bronze
Etched Bronze
Etched Bronze & Copper
Etched Bronze & Copper

 

Here are a few photos of Terri’s work.

DSC_0121
Enameled Pendant by Terri McCarthy
Pendant by Teri McCarthy
Pendant by Terri McCarthy
DSC_0175
Enameled Brooch by Terri McCarthy

 

I used the E-3 Etch Kit by Sherri Haab. Cool Tools also carries Silver, Copper, Bronze and Brass Sheet, the perfect blank canvas for etching!  Etching metal is an interesting technique that cannot be duplicated in any other fashion. It is achieved by protecting certain areas and leaving the rest open to the action of the acid. The greatest master of this technique was certainly Rembrandt (1606 – 1669).  He produced over 300 etchings in his lifetime.

August 14, 2015

Posted In: Creativity, Product Spotlight

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