Forging Jewelry from an Ingot

Course Description

About this course

In this virtual workshop, attendees will learn how to transform an ingot of silver into a signet style ring and a bracelet using forging techniques commonly used in west Africa with just a hammer, an anvil, and files! Class will focus on learning to create and forge out lengths of wire, sphere elements, ring and bracelet shapes, as well as some decorative elements. The instructor will also review how to properly pour ingots, as well as how to transform hammers into more efficient tools. A minimal amount of soldering will be used to close the bottom of the ring shank. 

For more information about virtual courses, visit our Virtual Course FAQ page. 

Please read the Materials & Tools tab! 

Meet the Instructor

Matthieu Cheminée

Matthieu moved from Paris to New-Mexico when he was 19, where for seven years he studied Navajo, Hopi and Zuni jewelry techniques. He was immediately drawn to stamping, making concho belts and bracelets. He then moved to Mali, West-Africa and worked for a few years with the Fulani, Touareg and Bambara jewelers. 

In 1999, Matthieu settled in Montreal Canada and continued his studies by going to a jewelry school and learning a more classical part of the trade. Over the years, Matthieu has returned to Africa regularly.

In 2014, Tim McCreight and Mattheiu Cheminee created the Toolbox Initiative, a non-profit organization that helps jewelers in West Africa through the gifts of donated tools.

“I have been stamping and making stamps since the beginning and have developed a form of stamping design by creating patterns that fill the entire piece of metal. This is called “tessellation”.

Matthieu has written two books,  “Legacy, jewelry techniques of West Africa“  and “The Art of Stamping”, both published at Brynmorgen Press.

Visit Matthieu's website or instagram page for more info on his work.

Materials & Tools 

The following supplies will be used for course demonstrations and objectives. A suggested item and/or vendor has been provided below for reference. Click the vendor name (in red) to be redirected to a page where you can find the item. The quantities needed for each item are listed first. If ordering, please be aware that some items may come in larger quantities than needed for this class. We recommend not opening an item's packaging until the day of the workshop. Student participation during or in-between class sessions is strongly encouraged but not required - observers are welcome.

Metal/raw materials (.999 silver is highly recommended and much easier to work with, but sterling silver grain can also be used. You can instead use a 1/2" copper rod for practice if silver is not possible, in which case you will not need to pour an ingot.):

Hand tools (you either need a forging hammer or a cross peen hammer):

Torch setup (You will need a large enough torch to melt your ingot, but there is only one small seam to solder on the ring shank. A video will be sent to you for how to make an ingot mold using a charcoal block or a piece of hard wood, if you do not have a steel mold.):

Other/miscellaneous items:

  • particulate dust mask
  • eye protection
  • shop rags/towels
  • Sharpie marker(s)
  • household drill and large drill bit - if making ingot mold
  • ruler




Matthieu Cheminée


April 12 -16, 2021


10:00 AM -12:00 PM


3 days

Basic and above

No Class Dates

April 13

April 15

Virtual - Eastern Time Zone
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