Every winter I hit this spot where it's too cold to do much ongoing work at the jewelry bench. I can run out for short bursts to do a custom order or a bit of sanding but it quickly becomes too cold and my fingers stop following instructions. I tend to think of it as a forced shutdown - like when a factory closes for two weeks to do routine maintenance and that's when all of the employees have to take their vacation.
I've been trying to look at what I can do in terms of planning - going back through some of my resource materials to brush up on techniques and (hopefully) get inspiration for projects I can do once the weather really starts to warm up.
Here are some of the books I've been pulling out in the last couple of weeks:
The Complete Book of Glass Beadmaking - great fundamentals of bead making.
Foldforming - basically, this is the Bible of foldforming. And it's a lot cheaper than it used to be!
The Complete Metalsmith - The instructions and images in this book are tremendously helpful.
Jewellery Fundamentals of Metalsmithing - another Tim McCreight book with good metals instruction.
Making Metal Beads - Great ideas and instruction for making your own beads. I have yet to actually make any but the ideas are inspiring!
And even though it's a little bit early I think it might be time to get out the Valentine's Day projects. The "surprise" cookies are always a hit:
And it's a fun project for Ben and me to go through the art supplies and clean out the broken pieces to make little heart crayons:
Maybe by the time it warms up I will have a ton of ideas and be ready to get back to the workbench and make a bunch of new jewelry!