4 Students talk about rtheir experience
Miranda AckerleyThis was the greatest class and instructor EVER!I went into this class thinking it would be very tedious, something fun to try, probably make something cool, but not anything I would try again. My main objective was to learn about soldering without having to invest money in tools/materials I might never use again.Dave is a great teacher. The class was nonstop education. It was a lot of info on selling, techniques, tips, etc. Never did I feel rushed or bogged down. Dave took a great amount of time individually helping each of us. Answering even unrelated questions. He showed us ways to make silver smiting fast (big fan) and profitable.
I completed 2 projects, and felt confident enough to help a couple other students a bit. I am in awe of my projects, and although they are not my usual aesthetic, I love them, and will now set up a space to do more pieces, combining the techniques I learned with some enameling techniques.I can't rave about Dave enough. He is so organized, calm, patient and funny. He is safety conscious and critiques your work by teaching you what you could do better. He makes you feel confident in what you are doing.If you get the chance, take his class. I can't wait for the advanced ones.
Pam Killingsworth at Bead n Crystal, Roseville class."Of all the classes I've taken this was of the highest quality. The class was well structured- instructor was patient- east to follow, friendly and an expert of his teaching and metal working skills-made it so easy to finish with a beautiful quality piece. Thank you"
Tyran GerbitzI wanted to let you know how thankful I am that I took your class a few years ago in Broken Arrow, OK. Because of your two day class I've been able to make some pretty cool stuff. It's overwhelming how much people love it and want to buy pieces from me or even have me make custom pieces for them. I've met so many nice lapidaries and silversmiths over the past couple of years. It's a great community of people. Thank you so much! I can never thank you enough!
Alexis Brown.This is the perfect class for anyone wanting to learn how to be a successful silversmith, whether for yourself or your business. I've taken a silversmithing class before, but was unable to continue making silversmithing pieces because of how expensive the supplies were. Therefore, I was most impressed by how affordable the tools and supplies used in this silversmithing class were. Unlike other silversmithing classes, Dave taught me how to use supplies that are less expensive and don't require their own room to keep from burning my house down. After the class, I was able to purchase the supplies and set up an area on my kitchen table to work without spending a small fortune. I think Dave can make any unsure beginner feel like an expert, and I left with the confidence to make beautiful pendants on my own.
Karen V.Just a note to thank you again for the great Intro to Silversmithing class. I learned so much in the 2 short days... and you gave me such a renewed appreciation for Southwestern jewelry. I have a large collection of Native American jewelry that I have collected for many years... just looking at those pieces now, and realizing what is involved to create these pieces... well, I'm in awe!.
Laury H.Dave Smith's Beginning Silversmithing class was AWESOME! Two days of nonstop education. Dave is very organized, patient and entertaining. He took time to help each person individually while keeping the rest of the class working too. He is safety conscious and critiques your work by teaching you what you could do better while instilling confidence in what you are doing. I am quite impressed with my project pieces and can't wait for the advanced class. I have been making and selling beaded jewelry for about 4 years and while I love the creative aspect, I haven't really found my nitch. Until now! Thanks Dave,
Kathy C.Hi Dave, I just wanted to thank you again for the Silversmithing class you taught at Beadoholique in Spring, Texas. I had a great time and FINALLY learned to solder without being scared of it. I am quite happy with my piece and enjoyed your way of teaching. I too teach jewelry classes and I'm a fine silver snob!! There's nothing like it although I am told gold is wonderful to work with but too rich for my 'not very deep' pockets! Thanks again and I hope to be in another one of your classes somewhere in time.
Melissa M.I have been wanting to attend a silversmithing class to learn about the techniques because I didn't want to learn on my own, and I am so glad I waited! I was blown away with the quality of instruction and how many techniques we were able to learn in just two days. Everything we needed was provided for the class, and I was so impressed with the preparation that is taken to get ready for students. Dave was great with giving 1 on 1 attention to each student (even in a large class), was extremely patient for those that were slower learners, and made difficult techniques seem simple with giving professional hints and tips. Plus he even pushed through and continued the course when he was sick. Dave gave us lots of options to get everything we needed to start on our own, including tools, materials, and instructional dvd's & online content at very competitive prices as well. I was so impressed with my own work and enjoyed it so much that I decided to purchase a kit and the online instruction so I could review our techniques and learn new ones. The online content is fabulous; it gives you a view that would just be like your own on the bench, and even shows how to prevent or fix mistakes! Dave gave me the confidence to start making pieces the very next day on my own, and I'm very excited to have learned this skill. I couldn't have been happier with the class and the instructor. If you decide to take this course I guarantee you will not be disappointed!
Rick C.Hi Dave, I was in your class at Argenta Bead Company this past September. After your class I took another beginner silversmith class because a pendant, ring and possibly a bracelet was to be taught and I wanted more practice and knew I'd probably get to learn different techniques with silversmithing. So far the class has only worked on a ring. I am very thankful I found your class because this class is more of a craft class. I got to experience an acetylene torch, saw, warm pickle and paste flux (I prefer your method for flux & pickle) but it has been very frustrating and illogical with some procedures. Many students have had to re-solder pieces because the instructor did not do a good job at showing how to manipulate the solder with heat. Because you made us watch twice how solder follows heat I was able to save my solder when it balled up on the inside of my ring connection. Very proud moment for me because I was in a state of panic. There is much more I can point out but it would be a book. If I hadn't found your class and took just this other one I would have given up on making jewelry, and I want this to be a business. So thank you for sharing your skills and experience. I hope to take another class from you some day.
Tiffany H.This was so much more than a soldering class. I went home and created jewelry for my wife and kids. They love it!
Amber T.OMG! I am so looking forward to the advanced silversmithing class. I am the only student at my school who is making their own sterling body art.
Charlie M.I tried learning in on-line silversmithing classes but there just wasn't enough detail about how to solder a bezel or how to handle the problems I was having. Dave covered all that in class. My comfort level is enough now that I plan to start selling as soon as I get enough pieces created.
Julie F., North Bend, OR February 21, 2019
Wow! What a class. I have been fiddling around trying to sell my jewelry for the last couple of years. I was pretty disappointed with my profit to work ratio. Your talk about raising the price of my pieces was really hard to swallow when I wasn't selling them very often and at barley what it cost me to make them. So I figured "What do I have to lose"! It really worked I upped the price by three times what I had been asking and sold more in one day than I had sold all year. Thank you so much.
Sally G., Sacramento, CA July 15. 2010
Thanks for doing this seminar. I have applied several of your suggestions and set up fundamental rules like you suggested and it has effected my whole like, especially the pleasure I get from making and selling my jewelry. I found my niche and am selling consistently.
Darleen K., Warsaw, IN August 15, 2010
Dave! I am mad at you! I used your tools and started selling so much that my husband now expects me to make money regularly. No seriously, I only implemented a few of the things you taught me in class and it changed the way my jewelry business was heading. My time is so much more productive than it used to be. Thank you.
Marty C. October 12, 2013
Sorry I am getting this response to your question "How are things going" back to you so late, a little over three years now. When I attended your seminar I was Gung Ho to go back home and really pursue selling my creations. Life got really in the way. my cancer, my husbands passing, my daughters wedding and about a dozen other things. When I retired this year I picked up the workbook and CD I got in class and started back through it. I got Gung Ho again and started doing what I learned. I now have a great business and extra income to augment my retirement.
Connie P., May 1 2010
I found my niche! You helped me focus my efforts and get what my time is worth. I now pay for my supplies and keep a little extra. The seminar was great and I am anxious to take more classes with you. Thank you David!
I came to this class because I wanted do silversmithing for a long time. I was looking for a western style hat band but couldn't find one I liked, so I called Dave to ask If I could make a hat band at this retreat. We talked about what I wanted and it turned out that are about the same as conchos so it fit really well with the jewelry we were going to make. I made three turquoise conchos for the leather hat strap that I brought. I also made three bracelets with bezel set stones, a heavy Three wire, an Interchangeable with a step Bezel and a wide cuff with a square corner stone. I made a Turquoise Ring and a contemporary pendant with ahgh grade Turquoise cabochon. I got so much from this class that I would recommend It to anyone who wants to learn.
I've always wanted to make things with my hands and make things that are worthwhile and eventually turn my new skill into a second income. After taking this class it looks like I am going to make it happen. I learned so much more than I thought I could in these classes. I am looking forward to using what I have learned to get the money rolling in while doing something that I enjoy. I made 4 bracelets, a pendant and a ring and mastered the fundamentals and saftey knowledge I need to feel comfortable silversmithing. Dave's teaching style made it easy for me. I hope I can take another class In the future just for the fun of It.
I think this class was great! I had a lot of fun and learned a lot of new things. I have learned a lot and feel confident that I will be able to make some beautiful stuff that I'll be able to make and move it on to people and make some money. This Is going to be my retirement gig. I have always wanted to do this and now feel I have the tools to succeed. Thanks Dave & Sue!
P.S. The food was also great!
This the 3rd class I have taken from Dave, They have all been awesome. I've been so busy I just never got started at home. So this time I am certain that I will be doing this when I get back home. I wanted to take this retreat because I wanted the full emersion of a retreat and wanted to make a Southwestern style Belt Buckle and WOW did It turn out great. I also cleaned up my skill set and made an Intermediate bracelet and, a cuff and a three wire bracelet. To top It all off I made a Sea Turtle Pendant.