5 books that you would recommend

This is actually a request from someone who is still learning, and
wants to do more research… namely, me. ;}

What 5 books would you recommend to someone who wanted to learn more
about jewelry design and fabrication? Or the history of jewelry?

Silverhorn Designs

Elizabeth. Here is my pick of five books for jewelry design and

  1. Overall reference: Jewelry Concepts and Technology by Oppi

  2. Practical Goldsmithing Techniques: Professional Goldsmithing by
    Alan Revere.

  3. General reference: Complete Metalsmith by Tim McCreight.

  4. Metalsmithing techniques: Metals Technic edited by Tim McCreight.

  5. Enameling and basic chain making: Cloisonné Enameling and Jewelry Making by Felicia Liban & Louise Mitchell (may no longer be
    in print).

Elizabeth, if your with Silverhorn Designs in Montecito Ca. I’m not
sure why your asking this question. The jewelry in your shop is of
the finest quality and workmanship I have ever seen. Just pick the
brains of your bench people they are true craftsman.

George Hebner

Wow! Only 5? There are so many… I am a self taught jeweler and I
must say, I couldn’t have done it without these books. These top 3 are
absolute must haves, the ones following are also very good and are
further explorations into specific techniques. The last group are
helpful on the business end. Don’t be put off by the prices on some
of these, they are well worth it!

The Essential books: “The Complete Metalsmith: An Illustrated Handbook” by Tim McCreight “Jewelry Concepts and Technology” by Oppi

Professional Goldsmithing: A Contemporary Guide to Traditional Jewelry Techniques” by Alan Revere.

More great books: “Classical Loop-in-Loop Chains” by Jean Stark

Jewelry: Fundamentals of Metalsmithing ” by Tim McCreight

Metals Technic: A Collection of Techniques for Metalsmiths” by Tim

Metalsmith’s Book of Boxes & Lockets” by Tim McCreight

Jewelry related: “Small Scale Photography” by Charles Lewton-Brain

Gemstones of the World” by Walter Schumann

Crafting As A Business” by Wendy Rosen

Of course there are many more and I'm looking forward to seeing what

other people recommend. Try searching also at ganoksin.com books

Amy O’Connell
Amy O’Connell Jewelry

Nobody more qualified seems to have responded to this so I’ll give it
a try. First try the public library or a nearby university library.
This will give you a look at hopefully some thing before searching
them out and buying them. Subject searches or specific searches at:

Amazon.com–Earth’s Biggest Selection Alibris - Rare, Used, and
Hard-to-Find Books Welcome to Bibliofind! will help find new and out of
print copies.

For a few specific titles that seem to be in print:

Jewelry Concepts and Technology ~ Usually ships in 24 hours Oppi
Untracht / Hardcover / Published 1982 Our Price: $94.50 ~ You Save:
$40.50 (30%) Average Customer Review: Read more about this title…

Metal Techniques for Craftsmen: A Basic Manual for Craftsmen on the Methods of Forming and Decorating Metals -with 769 Illustrations Oppi Untracht

Not as all inclusive and is out of print The Complete Metalsmith: An Illustrated Handbook~ Usually ships in 24 hours Tim McCreight /
Paperback / Published 1991 Our Price: $11.96 ~ You Save: $2.99 (20%)

Jewelry: Fundamentals of Metalsmithing ~ Usually ships in 24 hours
Tim McCreight / Hardcover / Published 1997 Our Price: $20.99 ~ You
Save: $9.00 (30%)

Design Language ~ Usually ships in 24 hours Tim McCreight / Hardcover
/ Published 1997 Our Price: $8.95

Practical Jewelry Rendering ~ Usually ships in 24 hours Tim McCreight
/ Spiral-bound / Published 1994 Our Price: $24.95

The Design and Creation of Jewelry by Robert Von Neumann List Price:
$19.95 Our Price: $15.96

Listings are from Amazon.com. I’m not familiar with Tim’s Design
books, but his other stuff is excellent. Design is a personal thing
and depends on who is judging the work. I hope this helps Jesse

here are my 5 reccommendations:

Oppi Untracht-Jewelry Concepts & Technology 
Tim McCreight-The Complete MetalSmith
Jinks McGrath-Encyclopedia of Jewelry-Making Techniques
Alan Revere-Professional Goldsmithing
Madeleine Coles-Jewelry:Two Books in One

Each of these books would be an excellent reference for a beginning
jeweler; Alan’s is perhaps the most technical, with excellent
step-by-step directions for several projects, most of which can also
be made in silver. If I could only purchase one book, it would
probably be Oppi Untrachts-it covers just about everything


Wonderful question…in that you will find as many variations as there
are jewelers,craftspersons and artists. First of all you may want to
break down your requests into several catagories. Technical.
Historical. Inspirational.

My greatest source of technical research comes from :
Jewelry Concepts and Technology’ by Oppi Untracht. Followed by
Theorie und Praxis des Goldschmieds’ by Brepohl (rumour has it that
it’s about to be published in English). There’s also a wonderful three
volume set of books entitled ‘Handbuch des Goldschmieds’ by Diebeners.
Available from the German publishers Ruehle-Diebener Verlag (they’re
the source of the trade magazine ‘Goldschmiede-Zeitung’-the best ‘zine
of the industry).’Jewelry Contemporary Design & Technique’ by Chuck
Evans. Alan Revere’s ‘Professional Goldsmithing’. And last, but not
least is Herbert Maryon’s book ‘Metalwork and Enamelling’ published by

Historically …Benvenuto Cellini’s autobiography and treatis on goldsmithing is a must-read. Then the great books on Faberge and Rene

Inspirational books…well that’s a personal/subjective subject. I
don’t want to overload you with that subject. There’s enough for a
year or two of reading here already.

Enjoy yourself and good luck.
Kim Eric Lilot.

I hope that those more qualified to answer (everybody) were not
offended. I just hadn’t seen any response so felt I should at least
give some response. I shouldn’t have slighted Alan’s books they
definitely belong up there. For an enameling book I think " A Manual
of Cloisonn� & Champleve Enameling" by Stosahl, Strosahl ad Barnhart
(Shaffer) is a must. Unfortunately it is out of print and not seen on
the used book lists. Coral Shaffer ( author) of Enamelwork Supply did
offer a photocopy at the bargain price of $20. Jesse

Hello Elizabeth For a really good overview on jewellery making the
best book ever is “Jewellery making manual - how to design and make your own jewellery” by Sylvia Wicks ISBN0-316-90484-8. I used to have
the old edition when I was learning years ago but still refer to this
new one occasionally even now. It only costs about �13 which must be
about $20. It is a pleasure to read and is very nicely laid out and
covers all the basics.

Another really good one which I bought recently is “Practical Jewellery Repair” by James Hickling ISBN 0-7198-0082 which is a good
general down to earth guide and does not only concentrate on repairs.
This is about �16 (about $25).

Both are still in print so shouldn’t be too hard to get hold of. If
they are not in print over there it should be pretty easy to get them

Harriet Kelsall

Although Oppi’s two books, Alan Revere’s book, and lots of the others
so far named are high on my list I would humbly add Cindy Jenkins’
Making Glass Beads” if we could extend the number from five to maybe
twelve or thirteen. Very specific but very valuable if one is a bead maker. Geo

I am going to add one more to the lists already put forth and that is
Jewelry Making and Design by Agustus F. Rose and Antonio Cirino
ISBN # 0-486-21750-7 Library of Congress # 66-29501 published by Dover
Press HTP Ron

Dear Elizabeth from Silverhorn, I’m glad I procrastinated about
replying to your request for those five books. You’ve certainly
stimulated a wonderful response from all those readers out there, and
I’ve learnt of books I hadn’t known about. What a beaut’ list the
responses have made! Many have recommended books that I would have
definitely included - Sylvia Wicks’ “Jewellery Making” and of course,
who could live without Oppi? Alan Revere’s latest book is definitely
on my list - to purchase - as I haven’t yet seen it in Australia.

Elizabeth, you specified design, fabrication and history, so here are
a few more to add to your list in these categories:

Design (and Designing) Anything by Peter Dormer and Ralph Turner. They
collaborated on “The New Jewelry”, Thames and Hudson. 1985, and it’s
still a thoughtful and provoking classic.

When it comes to rendering your designs, you’d have to consider any
or all three of the series by Maurice Galli, Dominique Riviere, and
Fanfan Li, published by Schiffer.

Adolfo Matteo’s “Techniques of Jewelry Illustration & Color Rendering”, pubished by Du Matt Corp., is excellent.

One to stir the creative juices is an exquisite gem of a book,
Patrick Woodroffe’s “A Closer Look: At the Art and Techniques” published in
large soft cover by Paper Tiger. He is a graphic artist with a
jewellers eye and sensibilities. In fact, Elizabeth, I’d recommend
that you search among the works of graphic designers for inspiration.
A few jewellery “designers” simply copy each other which may give a
superficial illusion of trendiness, but it soon spirals down to a
lower common denominator. Dare to be different, Elizabeth, it pays off
in the long term.

Manufacturing Techniques: This is a huge area and has already been
well covered by your respondents, but perhaps you’d add these to your

Rod Edwards’ “The Technique of Jewelry”, Batsford Books

Frances Loyen’s “Silversmithing”, Thames and Hudson.

Herbert Maryon’s “Metalwork and Enamelling”. Don’t be deterred by the
fact that this book was first published in 1912. It is a goldmine of
useful and in-danger-of-being-lost It is not well
illustrated in the contemporary manner, and some might find the prose
style a little detailed and pedantic, but it’s definitely worth the

History: The analogy of jewellery knowledge and experience like a huge
pyramid with us standing on its peak with access to all that has gone
before, is a reminder of our heritage and not a little humbling. Our
access to this knowledge and experience is far greater than our
forebears, thanks to the Internet and forums like this. Here are five
of my favourites:

Cyril Aldred’s “Jewels of the Pharaohs”, Thames & Hudson. Judy Rudoe’s
“Cartier - 1900 to 1939”, British Museum Press. Vivienne Becker’s “Art Nouveau Jewelry”, Thames and Hudson A. Kenneth Snowman’s “Faberge: Lost and Found ” Thames & Hudson. Catalogue for “Jewellery through 7000 years”, British Museum.

Thank you Elizabeth, for a stimulating request. You really started
something! Kind Regards, Rex from Oz