jewellery making pliers in aurelium studio in christchurch nz

A tour around my jewellery studio at home in Christchurch

It’s been just over 7 months since I moved into my home jewellery studio and I am still loving every minute of it. After 8 years of sharing a studio with other jewellers, it's still a novelty to have my own space, to use my tools whenever I want, and to just get on with my work to be perfectly honest!

My studio is very precious to me and I feel absolutely blessed to have this space to work in. What makes it even better is that it's at home. Being able to pop in here for a couple of hours after the kids have gone to bed or in the weekends if I have pieces to finish is invaluable for my growing business.

I’d love to show you a few areas that make up my small but mighty workspace so please read on if you would like a look!


 workbench in aurelium jewellery studio christchurch nz

My workbench: Where I spend most of my time 

I brought this bench down from my Auckland studio when I moved back to my hometown of Christchurch a year ago. It’s THE BEST workbench - super sturdy and a great size to house all my hand tools. This is where I sit to saw, file, sand and polish my work. It also holds my beloved Foredom pendant motor which I couldn’t be without for a huge range of jobs: drilling holes, smoothing wire, sanding, polishing, the list goes on.

pendant motor in aurelium jewellery studio in christchurch nz


close up of hand tools in aurelium jewellery studio



 soldering station in christchurch jewellery studio

Soldering hearth: My favourite area in the studio

This is where I do all my soldering, that is, joining two or more metal parts with a metal alloy called solder. This is achieved by heating the metal to a temperature high enough for the solder to melt and flow into the gaps between the two metal parts where it cools and solidifies, permanently bonding the metal. I use an orca torch and LPG for my soldering, which is one of my favourite parts of jewellery making! Soldering can be a challenge and it's crucial to get the flame size and intensity just right otherwise you end up with a ball of molten silver. It’s all about heat control, especially when working with multiple parts or very small parts, like these Pipeline earrings which tick both boxes!

After soldering, the hot metal is quenched (cooled) in water and then placed into a chemical solution to remove oxides that form on the metal surface during heating. This solution is most effective when warm so I use a slow cooker to keep it at a constant warm temperature. At my shared studio in Auckland and also here, I have actually had numerous visitors who genuinely thought I was cooking dinner in the slow cooker… I don't really know what to say to that...



 solatube in aurelium jewellery studio in christchurch nz

Solatube: Excellent, cost-effective alternative to a skylight

When we first moved in, this space was extremely dim as there was only one small frosted window to the outside. Not ideal for jewellery making where good lighting is crucial! We got a Solatube installed and it has made the biggest difference. On a sunny day, the amount of light that pours into the room is incredible. Highly recommend!



texturing and shaping hammers in aurelium jewellery studio in christchurch nz

 My hammer collection:

I have a range of hammers on the wall for easy access which are used for a variety of purposes. There's some for shaping metal (made from nylon and rawhide), for texturing (ball peen and cross peens) as well as some good old grunty hammers for using with steel tools. My all-time favourite is my precious Fretz texturing hammer which creates the most perfect crisp line texture on my Wrap rings.



 aurelium jewellery workbench

Designing bench: Generally kept as minimalist as my jewellery!

And the tour leads me on to the two big benches in the room. When we first moved in, there was one enormous high bench attached to the wall. My Dad ripped this out and used the wood to create two benches in the exact dimensions that I wanted. Now one is used as my soldering bench, and the other for designing/sketching, assembling jewellery and the odd bit of photography.


Thanks for taking a look around my studio, I hope you enjoyed the insight into where I design and make your handcrafted jewellery! I'd love to know if you have any questions so please do share them in the comments below.



Keen to explore the jewellery that I design and make right here in my Christchurch studio? To view meaningful minimalist jewellery with a difference, head on over to my shop HERE.

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1 comment

I love this! Getting to have a little sneak peek into the studio where all my favourite & unique jewellery pieces have been made is amazing! Who knew that you needed so many different types of tools and equipment! So proud of you! True testament to how much hard work, dedication and more importantly passion can make dreams come true!


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