I’ve offered wedding band and ring band workshops in Toronto since 2003. Long before other, similar studios opened and followed suit. I have been a professional working metalsmith/artist since 1986.
San Francisco, Santa Fe/Taos, New Mexico, Texas, Toronto and occasionally Iceland, I have lived, worked and taught these particular workshops.
My ring band (Sterling) workshops are 3 hours long and include Sterling silver for one ring band (rectangular wire 6mm wide x 2mm thick). $88pp
Wedding band workshops vary upon approach, materials used, etc. Generally the wedding band workshops are private bookings.
There are essentially 4 options:
Sterling ring band workshop $88pp,
Wedding band workshop (wax) $300pc+metal,
Wedding band workshop (fabricate-gold) $350pc+BYOM,
Wedding band workshop wax & DIY cast in the studio! $600pc+metal.
If you and your fiance are looking to create non-traditional rings, I recommend the lost wax process for couples with no experience.
Lost wax involves: carving (for hard wax), sculpting, and/or filing wax ring blanks (or form ring blanks from soft wax using your fingers). These models are then cast in either Gold, Sterling or Bronze.
Before they are cast we weigh the wax and determine cost, if the waxes need to be adjusted to fit budget, etc., we adjust the rings at this wax stage.
Wax is also more forgiving and if you make a mistake, etc., you can easily start over or fix the model.
Working straight from gold stock is not the same, can be considerably more expensive, and there isn’t a lot of room for error, plus solder needs to be purchased as well, see www.imperialproducts.com for quotes. They are located in Markham, ON.
White gold comes in 10k, 14k, 18k, 19k the higher the karat the more gold, lower means more alloy to make it appear ‘white’, same applies with red gold, or green gold.
Wedding band [wax & DIY cast] workshops runs three sessions:
1st session involves working with your designs and creating them out of wax.
I show you different approaches to working with wax, various jeweller’s wax, tools and equipment used, carving using hand tools, and rotary tools, etc. Rings are created.
2nd session – If you opt to cast the rings yourself/in house*. We go through the process of Spruing your wax ring models and investing them. The mould is then cured and ….
3rd session: Metal has been purchased and your rings are invested and ready to cast! We go through the entire process of centrifugal casting on this day then, go over various finishing techniques, filing, sanding, polishing.
The Wedding band (wax) workshop runs= $300 per couple + metal for approx 9hrs does not include stone setting** Deposit of half to book time.
Cast at studio $600pc
metal costs are based upon the spot price of the day- I do not charge any extra for gold unless shipping is involved. Basically, you are paying less than wholesale for your custom rings.
Gold rings in past wax carving workshops have run $250 to $650 per ring for 14k. $400 to $850 per ring for 18k. Lost wax cast Sterling silver rings are considerably less, $30 to $110 depending on size.
How much metal would you need (gram wise) is completely dependant on size of ring & your Sprue. A rough idea: approximate gram weight for an 8.5 to size 9 ring would weigh 9 to 10 grams and cost (if purchased through a metal supplier) around $460 to $500 (for 18k rectangular wire same dimensions as Sterling mentioned above) plus solder (18k medium grade) which could run $85 to $100+ for a coupon.
That said, adding a small amount of high karat yellow gold to sterling is also an option (fused and/or soldered to the Sterling). The beauty of adding high karat gold to Sterling is the bi-metal look plus you could add a patina using Liver of Sulfur that would make the Sterling appear black and the gold pop. Here is a link to my friend’s website (artist/metalsmith Vina Rust) demonstrating LOS on sterling w/gold.
Another option, though completely different would be to work with iron nails and add gold to that.
Here is a link to images (goldsmith Chris Nelson) to give you an idea of what iron/gold look like together –Pinterest Rings
Wedding band workshop-fabricate (melt your own gold (generally equalling more than 10 grams worth), work w/alternative materials, etc) $350per couple (pc)+ BYOM 6hrs. The difference between this workshop and the wax? This workshop YOU bring in your metal strip or enough high karat yellow gold to melt down and roll out into strips that are then cut, filed, sanded, formed, soldered, etc. Similar to our Sterling ring band workshops in method, yet you supply the raw materials.
Generally available- Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings and Sunday afternoons. Please email me to discuss your ring ideas!
*There is also the option of having your rings cast in Platinum – this takes place off site at a commercial casting company downtown GTA
** Cast in place! For entirely one-of-a-kind rings consider casting raw diamonds into the ring, or meteorites/tektites, iron. Another idea: cast two different metals!
The Devil’s Workshop has provided popular jewellery making workshops including The Wedding Band Workshop to artists, curious makers and DIY couples in Toronto for over 10 years.
We also specialize in custom engagement rings, bespoke wedding bands and special commissions of all types as well as repairs.