I finally broke down and ordered a couple of the Jelveh key mandrels. I've been wanting one for quite some time (I'm punty challenged) and figured I would find a way to make it so that I wouldn't have to put the whole mandrel in the kiln, eliminating the need for a billion of these particular types of mandrel. We'll see how successful I am. I have a button mandrel that's the same way--just the small mandrel pieces that make the button holes end up in the kiln. The body of the mandrel stays with you, so you just put in more smaller mandrel pieces and make more buttons! Very cool.
I just think there are so many things I could do with this key mandrel, besides the obvious key beads. Horseshoe nails, push pins, anything on wire (can we say bellflower presses?). I'll be running around every store I can think of trying to find crap to stick in this mandrel and put glass on. I can see it now....
The silversmithing classes still didn't materialize the way I had envisioned. William Holland only has 3 classes open. Every OTHER weekend in October. I really don't want to wait that long, and can't justify putzing around for a week between classes. On hearing the news, some friends in Florida offered me a chance to vacation there!
I met Jim and Cindy when I went to Germany last year. They're the couple I spent most of my time with. It was just Jim, Cindy, Kara, Marcie, and me for the tour. Kara and Marcie go way back, so they were up all hours, reminiscing and definitely boozing it up with the locals. Jim and Cindy were more my speed...much more laid back, and ready for bed before 3am! It turns out, I'd done business with them before (bought my first PVC "thingies" for my glass organization from them!). We had a great time hanging out in Lauscha, silently rolling our eyes at one another. It was a blast.
I had completely forgotten Jim knows silversmithing. I knew he was a rockhound, but for some reason that stuck with me, and not the silver. Go figure. Cindy said Jim would be glad to teach me, and I should come down in the time they have between their classes at William Holland. I've never been to Florida before, and I'm really excited about going! And it's just in a couple of weeks!
Well, I really need to be off to the studio. Those beads won't make themselves!