Custom Jewelry and Bead Setting

This course is designed to take the skills learned in Introduction to Jewelry Manufacturing and fine-tune them for use in custom jewelry and bead setting. This is not a licensed course and does not offer anything toward employment as a bench jeweler on its own. However, this course can help give student a deeper understanding of the jewelry trade, their personal style in bench jewelry and jewelry design, as well as further mentorship from Jason Chandler in honing their skills. In order to take this course, completion of our Introduction to Jewelry Manufacturing Course is required.

Custom Jewelry and Bead Setting Course Goals

In Custom Jewelry and Bead Setting students use the skills learned in Introduction to Jewelry Manufacturing to complete a series of projects base on their own designs. In this course student learn:

  • To determine when it is most appropriate to use CAD and 3D printing versus wax carving base on the requirements and knowledge about jobs.
  • How to price their work for retail, wholesale custom, and production (mass production of jewelry lines).
  • To determine when it is profitable to make a custom piece of jewelry.
  • What makes a profitable mold for production and reproduction.

Focusing on Student Design and Interests

Projects assigned throughout this course require students to us the project parameters to create jewelry pieces of their own design from rendering to finished products. Additionally, students who complete all assignments before the end of the course may move on to independent study. During this time they will have access to research and learn using Portland Jewelry Academy’s extensive library as well as Jason’s own knowledge. With this independent study option, students have a chance to learn a build skills outside of those offered in the curriculum.

Some independent study choices of past students include:

  • Enameling
  • Granulation
  • Mocame Gahn

Tool List

  • GRS microblock XL
  • 2 GRS wood bench pins (just wood, not the kit)
  • 12-piece beading tool kit and handle
  • Milgrain tools 6, 8, 12, and 15 with handle
  • GRS adjustable height bracket
  • GRS engravers balls shelf
  • 12-piece ball burr 3.1-8mm
  • 4mm and 8mm wheel bur (2 burs total)
  • 8mm round edge wheel bur
  • 4.7mm inverted cone bur
  • Carbide cylinder bur
  • 1 box of #11 scalpel blades
  • #5 castaldo white label mold rubber
  • Sintered diamond disc
  • 2 small rounds tins
  • Arbe Wax pen with 2 tips
  • 12 knife and 12 square edge green all in one rubber wheels(24 total)
  • 20mm mounted square edge diamond wheel
  • GRS 3-piece graver handle set
  • Jiffy Jig
  • 12 8/0 saw blades
  • 3 EVE diamond polished wheels
  • Stone setting graver set (Lindsay tops)

“I started the first term here thinking about how jewelry is something I was interested in and how this course would help me get a job. Now that I’m going through the second term, the content and mentorship Jason provides has given me enough confidence in the skills I’ve been building to start my own business. This education has not just made me employable, it has allowed me to start my career.”

-Brenda Zak

Founder of Wild Carrot Hairwork