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Filigree Jewelry: Coils and Middle Eastern Flowers

Advance your skills in making filigree jewelry with Canadian filigree artist Milt Fischbein! In this interactive virtual workshop, a direct follow-up to Introduction to Filigree Jewelry, students will learn the fundamentals of making filigree coils and Middle Eastern style flowers. By the end of this course, students will have created a pair of filigree teardrop earrings and a multi-level three dimensional filigree flower pendant.

Filigree is an ancient technique that involves the creation of lace-like silver components out of fine silver wires. Using very basic tools, beautiful objects are made by twisting and curling the silver threads and soldering them into carefully crafted frames.

This course will focus on and introduce participants to the amazing world of filigree coils and flowers through the creation of sterling silver flower frames, which are then filled in with teardrop coils for traditional style Middle Eastern flower pendants and teardrop earrings. Discussions and demos will include a refresher on making filigree wire and using paste solder, creating a variety of coil shapes including teardrop, circles, and eye shape, multi-petal frame construction, forming a three dimensional filigree ball, making a filigree bail, and setting a cabochon stone. Discussions will also include design aspects of making filigree flowers, appropriate tool selection, and paste solder modification for filigree coils.

This will be an interactive workshop with live demos and in class work time. Students will set up their camera devices so the instructor can observe and provide feedback in real time. Two video devices are recommended for this course - one larger screen for you to see the instructor and a secondary video device pointed at your work area. There will be a 1-hour break halfway through on each day.

For more information about virtual courses, visit our Virtual Course FAQ page. 

Please read the Materials & Tools tab! 

Meet the instructor

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​Milt Fischbein is an independent jewellery artist and educator. He discovered his love of working with precious metals about 25 years ago.

Milt’s filigree collection is based on techniques developed by craftsmen more than a thousand years ago. He has been fine tuning these ancient techniques in his Calgary, Alberta studio, to create a body of contemporary silver and gold filigree jewellery.  Milt is one of only a handful of metal artists in North America whose studio practice focuses on the design and fabrication of filigree.  Milt has been passing on his knowledge of filigree through workshops and lectures. He is a member of the Alberta Craft Council and his works have been published in Edmonton’s Where Magazine and Alberta Craft Magazine.  A write up on his studio was featured in the July 2017 issue of the MJSA (Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America) Journal. 



Materials & Tools

To lower expenses for students, the following $96 kit will be sent to the shipping address you have listed on your Metalwerx account. Kits will be mailed out by June 17th. If you register after this date, we can still mail out your kit but it may not arrive by the workshop start date. Please inform us if you reside outside of the United States, as your shipping cost may differ from the standard shipping included in the materials kit fee and may also need to be expedited. All items listed below will be included in your kit.

Note: the use of a rolling mill is indispensable for making filigree wire, however, wires included in the following materials kit have been pre-rolled for you, so you do not need to have a rolling mill to participate in this workshop. How to make your own filigree wire will be reviewed during the workshop. 

  • 5m x instructor prepared filigree wire - 26GaF0.25
  • 2 x 8mm discs - 30g
  • 2 x 6.5mm discs - 30g
  • 1 x solder application tool - modified by Milt
  • 1 x solder application plate
  • 1 x template for flower project
  • 1 x 10g container of 650 easy paste solder
  • 20" x 18g sterling silver round wire - rolled to 0.7mm
  • 39" x 20g sterling silver round wire - rolled to 0.5mm
  • 5 x 22g sterling silver jump rings - 3.6mm OD
  • 10 x 20g sterling silver jump rings - 4.6mm OD
  • 2 x fine silver round bezel cup - 6mm
  • 2 x round carnelian cabochon - 6mm
  • 1 x priority mail shipping 
Students should bring

You will want a laptop, desktop computer, iPad, or tablet as well as a secondary video devices (such as a smart phone) attached to a tripod or holder, so that the instructor can see and assist you more easily. 

Students will be responsible for providing the following common studio items. Some suggested vendors have been linked (red text).

Torch setup:

  • 1 x fireproof area - steel sheet, tiles, etc. (Amazon or Home Depot)
  • 1 x torch - any - instructor uses EZ torch (Otto Frei or Rio Grande)
  • 1 x striker or lighter - Silversmith system has one (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x soldering block (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x soldering tweezers (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x pickle - for non-ferrous metals (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x crock pot or tempered container with lid - for pickle (Amazon)
  • 1 x copper tongs - for pickle (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x brass brush (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x paste flux (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x 6" silver wire solder - hard, medium, and easy (Rio Grande)
  • 1 x tempered glass container or sink - for quenching and rinsing
  • 1 x small brush - for flux
  • a few feet x stainless binding wire - 26g dead soft (Rio Grande)

Hand tools:

Other/miscellaneous items:

  • safety glasses 
  • dust mask
  • towels or rags

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