Teaching and Writing
I have been teaching jewelry classes for many years. I have also authored many articles for books and magazines about making jewelry. I teach here in my studio classroom as well as on the road for different guilds and organizations.
I found one consistent complaint of my students was how difficult it was to include faceted stones in their work. Adding stones was difficult because making the stone mounts is a time consuming and complicated job.
In the course of my own career I have made many different styles of stone mounts for my own work. I then made a mount that I decided to have cast for me which I could add to my designs. These mounts were made for 4 different sizes of round faceted stones 6.8.10 and 12 mm. I decided to standardize my stone mounts in fours sizes to make purchasing stones simpler. I chose the sizes based on usual availability across a wide range of colors and species of stones. These four sizes give me the broadest range of stones to choose from.
Standardizing my stone sizes made purchasing easier, no longer would I fall in love with a 6.25 mm round aquamarine unless I intended to make the mount from scratch.
Once I had these 4 sizes of round mounts created and put into production I started thinking of offering to teach my students how to use them. This was a self serving class offering but I also wanted my students to have the option of using the beautiful colored stones available in jewelry supply stores.
I named my stone mounts "Sam's Simple Mounts" because of the ease of use. Usually a jeweler learns how to set stones by setting 20 stones a week, more or less. My students might set 1 stone a month. So, in my stone setting class I offer the tools to set the stones in my own mounts with for a very reasonable price as part of the class supply list. I can also offer the stones to set as well.
I have since produced oval and square stone mounts as well a a production version of a bezel mount.
My Sam's Simple Mounts are available on my website (www.spatania.com) under "Jewelry Parts". Simply solder them on and set your stones. Making jewelry is fun and VERY challenging so I tried to make is easier for the many people who love to create their own designs.