Saturday, April 23, 2016

Book Review

Simple Soldering - A Beginner's Guide to Jewelry Making
by Kate Ferrant Richbourg
As jewelry designers, haven't we all decided at some point that learning to solder would be a good thing to do?

Those times when an open jump ring or cold connection just won't get the job done, soldering can offer the solution to many a problem.

But, as those of us who have tried soldering, whether we've mastered the technique or are still struggling, already know, this is not an easy technique.

After a couple of disgraceful and embarrassing attempts to go it alone, I looked around for a how-to book and, because of its title, chose this pretty paperback.

Starting with The Basics - how soldering works, fire scale & flux, types or solder and flow points & grades, the author leads us through the wheres and wherefores of setting up a work space and choosing our tools and materials.

Then comes the real nitty-gritty: a sampler of 16 pieces to create before moving on to a set of 20 projects. The projects include hook + eye clasp & dapped bead caps, soldered beads, stacked rings, chain earrings, tube riveted pendants, and more.

While all the sampler pieces and projects I worked on are interesting, educational, and fun to make, I found them a bit more time consuming and creatively restrictive than I had hoped. 

No, I didn't make my way through them all, mainly because I wouldn't be able to claim any of the results as my own designs.

A couple of wonderful things I did gain from this book: 
1) Lots of inspiration and ideas for new designs and creations of my own. The color photos are lovely.
2) A generous helping of "pride of ownership." This 160 page book brings a professional aura to my jewelry making shelf, and expecting guests, I manage to have it "just lying around" for them to ooh-and-aah over. Did I mention that the photos are lovely?

Other assets include a useful index and a helpful DVD.

Simple Soldering, published by Interweave Press, 2012.
Find it here:
Also available as an eBook + Digital Download Bundle:
More temptations by Kate Richbourg:



LoveStoneArts said...

I think that the sampler is a great teaching method. I would want for each piece to be usable- and yes, the sampler pieces are in need of modification to make each pendant your own. I like to put torches and tools into my young relatives hands. This book looks like a great primer. Thanks!

jemsbyjb said...

Thanks for sharing this book. I really need to study up on this process and simple is the word for me.

Beadsme said...

Sounds like a great book. Wish I had time to try something new.

Unknown said...

Very cool. . .

Brooke said...

Looks like a winner for learning how to solder! Thanks Mollie;)

SendingLoveGallery said...

Thanks for this great info, Mollie!

Gemstones on My Mind said...

Thanks, Mollie, for this informative book review! I have this book also, and hope to put it to use soon. Your are such an artist, I consider any book that you have used in your own creative journey, an excellent resource to help improve and grow my own skills.