Anna in Dublin – Silver Works
Are you looking for something fun and interactive to do in Dublin on cold winter nights?
Maybe a date night or an evening with the gals?
On a cold November evening, after a hard day’s work, myself and Dara made our way into town to do the ‘Forge your own Ring’ workshop with Silver works. I was so excited for this! I have real sausage fingers so believe me when I say it’s hard to find a ring that fits me well so I was ecstatic at the idea of getting to make a custom ring all for myself that would fit me perfectly!
We arrived slightly early so we got a bit of time to nosy around the jewellery shop before we were sent downstairs to the studio. The whole place was so warm and friendly. We were greeted by chocolate, tea and all the materials we needed. Our lovely hosts, Kat and Eoghan introduced themselves and took a moment to get to know everyone before we kicked off the class. It was quite a mix of a group, some French guests, Americans, English and then myself and Dara representing the locals!
We started off by figuring out our ring size so get an idea of how much silver we would need to make our ring. Then we had to cut the silver down to size. This made me a little nervous but Eoghan demonstrated how to cut the silver safely without losing a finger.
We were told from the very first step that our ring wouldn’t fit us until the end and I’m glad that they made this clear because I got more and more suspicious as time went on!
We started with shaping our rings into a rough circle. Rough is the word here for sure. I went in with a lot of false confidence because I consider myself a crafty girl so I mistakenly thought it would be easy but man I was humbled very quickly. I never realized how much work goes into making rings! I needed a hand turning my sheet into a circle and luckily it wasn’t badly misshapen for long as we quickly hammered the metal into a lovely c with our wooden hammer before closing the circle.
Time for a chocolate break while Kat brought out the big guns to fuse the rings shut. We got to watch while she used a blowtorch to heat the metal and use an extra bit of silver to bind the ring together. We watched in awe as the silver moved up to fill the gap. It was really fascinating to watch and Kat did a great job explaining the process behind each step.
Our rings then got a quick acid bath and came out looking pretty rough but now a closed circle that still didn’t fit my finger. This is when the fun really started and the team pulled out a bottle of prosecco to keep us on our best behavior.
More hammering with our lovely wooden mallet to shape it into a more perfect circle and then the sanding began. The sanding process takes quite some time as you have to smooth down all the rough edges.
The ring still did not fit yet but it was time to start hammering. We were upgraded to metal hammers to add texture. There were a couple different options for texturing the ring and they took time to explain all three. I went for the pebble texture. This step took the longest for me. I felt like I was going for ages but I was absolutely not hitting the ring hard enough. My ring finally fit and it was perfect.
Then it was taken away by the team to be polished. I opted for a shiny finish. Dara opted for matte. It made its way back to me for a clean and once it was shining back at me I was in awe at the fact that I had made it!
Dara had actually made hers slightly too tight and it was very easily resized by the team and they told us that we could come back any time we like to get it polished or resized!
We had such a lovely evening. Kat and Eoghan were amazing hosts and it was such a unique experience. All my friends will be getting gift vouchers for their birthdays!
They also do longer, more intricate workshops and I was even eyeing up the ‘Introduction to Jewellery-Making’ Course! They also do a Wedding Ring Workshop where you and your partner can design and make your own wedding rings which sounds like a really magical experience. I’ll just have to find someone to marry me before I can do that one!