Many of our designs are made with unique Dichroic glass, a type of glass invented by NASA for use in satellite mirrors. This glass contains multiple micro-layers of different metal oxides (gold, silver, titanium, chromium, aluminum, zirconium, magnesium, silicon) which are evaporated on the glass surface in a vacuum chamber. Photographs do not do these pieces justice as this glass actually reflects one color and transmit a different color or hue. We hand cut the glass, piece it together, layer it and fuse it in a computer controlled kiln. Aided by the computer, our kilns can use a process called "annealing" to slowly cool the glass after it is fused. This yields a very durable end product that does not have the microscopic "stress fractures" that can make the glass brittle and subject to breaking like pieces that were not properly annealed. We take pride in creating a product that is both unique and of superior quality.
Both Cat and Julie have taken numerous classes in base metal clay and Julie has studied extensively with the Hadar clays. Familiar in most of the major brands of base metal clays, Julie assists many Paragon kiln patrons with metal clay firing issues as the Paragon "Metal Clay Guru". With a love of learning, Julie is always working on new challenges in her projects such as the copper, bronze and steel ring. This ring created by Julie is titled "Geometry Lesson" and appears in one of Hadar Jacobson's Instruction Books, Metal Clay Practice.
Certified Instructors in Precious Metal Clay (Fine and Sterling Silver), Julie and Cat have been fortunate to study under many world renown Instructors including Saul Bell Award Winners. Julie also incorporates many aspects of traditional metal-smithing in her classes and work.Through private Skype classes Julie is able to share her vast knowledge base with students around the globe.
Our Fine Silver pieces are made with Fine Silver Clay. This fascinating medium is silver particles mixed with an organic clay binder. This clay can be shaped, carved, extruded, filed etc... Once fired, the clay binders burn away yielding a piece of 99.9% pure silver!
We love the colors and variety offered by beads and gems. Our studies in design and jewelry construction techniques enable us to teach many different types of jewelry. These are always popular classes.
With a combined total of 28 yrs of training with Internationally famous jewelry artisans, Julie and Cat can offer quality instruction on even advanced techniques.