About

Tina Wojtkielo Snyder

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Tina Wojtkielo Snyder

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2005 AJM Innovation Awards

AJM Magazine has announced the winners of the second annual AJM Innovation Awards. These awards recognize technologies that are making a difference in the jewelry manufacturing industry today, and will continue to do so in the future.

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2013 MJSA Thinking Ahead Award – Mike Joyce

For the past 10 years, MJSA has recognized the technological advances and products that are making a difference in the jewelry industry today and as we move into the future. The honorees are selected with the guidance of the esteemed experts…

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3 Jewelers, 4 Tools Testing

Editor’s Note: Want to know how to make a bench jeweler’s day? Send him a box full of new tools and tell him that if he plays with those tools for a month, you’ll let him keep ’em. That’s just what we did. When planning…

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4 Tips to Boost Refining Returns

This article highlights some 4 tips to boost refining returns that will prove dollar wise and useful for you. You’ve done your homework and found a reputable refiner whom you trust to process your scrap. You have solid housekeeping…

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5 Tips for Mass Finishing

There are many paths to the perfect finish. When it comes to mass finishing production jewelry there are a few tricks you can use to keep your pieces looking their best. The following is a series of tips provided by industry experts to keep your…

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A New Platinum Sterling Silver

It took about two months of experimentation to get the formulas for Platinum Sterling Silver just right – Robinson created alloys containing 5 percent, 3.5 percent, and 1 percent platinum. But he’s the first to admit that combining silver…

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Additive Manufacturing in the Jewelry Scene

Did you ever imagine you’d see the day when a finely woven mesh bracelet with thousands of tiny links could be grown in one piece, on a machine, using 18k gold powder? Well, that day has come.
It’s jaw — dropping, really.

Today,…

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Alex and Ani – Positive Energy

For Alex and Ani, booming success points back to manufacturing locally, with love
Pharmaceutical salesperson Kelly Oliver logs thousands of airline miles every year — and she never flies without her St. Christopher bangle, her sacred…

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Bench Tool Junkies

What you should be is excited to read this article and see what others just like you have to say about their favorite bench tools. So you have a passion for hardware – loving tools is not a crime!

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Color Stories Designing Around a Dynamic Opal

‘I show you an opal. You show me a design.’ That was the deal I struck with the three willing designers whose imaginative jewelry pieces you’ll see on the following pages. Once they accepted the challenge to design around this fabulous opal from…

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Common FAQs for Metals Suppliers

Behold the metals supplier, lord of all things shiny. He fills your crucible with casting grain and makes sure youre always one sheet ahead of the game. But perhaps more important than his ability to make metal magically appear at your door in…

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Ensuring the Best Refining Experience

Today’s record metals prices have probably encouraged you to be more diligent than ever about capturing every last bit of precious metal dust in your shop. With gold in the $1,600 to $1,700 range at presstime, never before have your old polishing…

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Gemstone Setting Tip: Shape

“You should know what kind of shape you’re in,” joked Arthur Anton Skuratowicz during an MJSA At the Bench Live demonstration he gave last month at the AGTA GemFair in Tucson. While sharing gemstone setting tips for fancy shaped and raw…

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Hydraulic Die Press

Pressing Matters by Tina Wojtkielo Snyder This month, we asked Lisa Krikawa of Tucson: If you were stranded on an island (that just happened to have a bench in the middle and some metal hanging around), what tool would you want to have that allows…

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Improvements in Shop Security Technology

When you work with materials as valuable as precious metals and gemstones, you need to take measures to keep them safe — which could mean anything from Rover the attentive watchdog to installing a security protocol that would be suitable for…

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Jewelers’ Stories About Working with Findings

When a commercial finding isn’t quite right but making the component by hand seems like reinventing the wheel, creative modification comes into play. That’s what designer Jayne Redman of Cumberland, Maine, encountered when searching for…

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Jim Dailing Crafts Sentimental “Story Rings”

Custom designer Jim Dailing of Bend, Oregon, has been making jewelry for 30 years. For a brief stint during the mid 1980s he did so in a traditional jewelry store that he helped to open. But he soon found that he was not a fan of all the distractions…

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Low-Cost Rapid Prototype Systems

Five years ago, if you wanted to buy an additive manufacturing machine to grow rapid prototype (RP) models in your shop, you had to be prepared to shell out close to $50,000. Today, due to technological advances in Digital Light Processing (DLP)…

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Maximizing Bench Work Profitability

Jeffrey Johnson has two stores, 18 bench jewelers, and over 100 employees-and he still has time to work at the bench. ‘I wouldn’t be who I am without the bench,’ he says. That’s why he’s got one set up in his office among leather arm chairs, file…

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Michael David Sturlin’s Two Strand Crocheted Chain

With the quartz as the central focal point of the ‘Reflecting Pond Necklace,’ Sturlin had to design a chain that could support its weight. He started crocheting 18k red gold wire—75 feet of it to be exact—to create a two-strand chain.…

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Modified CAD Design

What do you do when you realize your virtual inventory is virtually impossible to manufacture? With so many jewelry designers turning to CAD to realize their visions, such predicaments are becoming more and more common. Those thin edges,…

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Mystery Box Jewelry Challenge

Welcome to the Mystery Box Challenge! You are among the select designers who have received this box of materials, Your mission is to use these materials to create a unique piece of jewelry in four weeks’ time. You must incorporate into your design…

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Novell Design Studio

At Novell Design Studio, efficiency, quality, and service get a jolt of passion
You can hear the passion in Bruce Pucciarello’s voice when he talks about what it means to keep his jewelry manufacturing operation in the U.S. When you walk…

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Organizing a Jeweler’s Studio

For Howard Woods of Eagle, Idaho, a jewelers studio should be a place of beauty – organized beauty – that fuels creativity. An inspiring painting of a Southwest landscape by one of his favorite artists, Lon Megargee of Arizona, hangs above the…

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Palladium Q&As

Its no secret that palladium has captured the attention of the industry. In 2005, purchase of palladium for jewelry use worldwide shot up by 54 percent, according to Johnson Mattheys Platinum 2006, and this past year has seen a proliferation…

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Redefining Fine Jewelry

Ask someone to define “fine jewelry” and you’ll usually hear something about gold, platinum, diamonds, and other traditionally “precious” materials. But go to any high-end jewelry trade show today, and you’ll find that the fine jewelry…

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Retracing Steps to Solve Casting Problems

A design riddled with undercuts and sharp little details just screams casting nightmare the moment the CAD file shows up. But sometimes even the most straightforward looking designs can cause real headaches for the caster. Take for example…

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Revving Up the Burnout Process

The internet has put the world at our fingertips. In minutes or less you can start a video chat with a friend in Hong Kong, download a recipe and ingredient list for Pad Thai to your smartphone, or buy a new HDTV. So why shouldn’t you expect the same…

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Ring by Cynthia Renée Zava

With textures that echo the Patagonian mountains of Chile, the Torres del Paine Ring by Cynthia Rene Zava of Cynthia Rene Inc. in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, tells the tale of one family’s moving experiences on a trip to Chile. Zava tells the…

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Ring Sizing Tips and Tricks

Ask a seasoned bench jeweler how many rings he or she has sized and they’ll probably give you a figure in the quadruple digits. The following is a compilation of tips and tricks to help you perform this mundane task better and faster.

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SpeckFINDER HD Takes Magnification to High-Tech Levels

When a maid steals a $250,000 gold and diamond necklace from a famous rappers hotel room, only to find that those diamonds are actually CZs, it puts the hotel manager in a state of panic. Sure, he feels good about recovering the stolen necklace.…

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Sphearrings: From Concept to Market

One of the newest earring findings to hit the market is showing a little earlobe midriffand it could turn the way people perceive earring design inside out.
Patented Sphearrings insert through the back of the car, leaving more of the lobe…

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Superfit’s Hinge and Latch System

Getting a superior fit on your next custom ring order could be just a few mouse clicks away. Superfit Inc., the King of Prussia, Pennsylvania-based manufacturer known for its tailor-fit shanks, recently launched Digital Installations,…

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Testing ACCU Carve Injection Wax

AJM recently asked two companies, AU Enterprises in Berkley , Michigan , and Racecar Jewelry Co. Inc. in Cranston , Rhode Island , to test out the new ACCU Carve injection wax from KerrLab in Orange , California . Designed for casters and designers…

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Tips for Casting Palladium

Some manufacturers jumped at the chance to work with palladium a few years ago, when it made its way into the jewelry industry spotlight. A cousin of platinum, palladium’s color and pedigree won the hearts of casters who were willing to give…

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Vermeil Jewelries

Considering metals prices continue to be sky high, it’s no surprise that plating companies’ phones are ringing off the hook. “We’re getting a much higher volume of inquiries from jewelry makers who produce silver or karat gold product and…

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What to Know About Heavy Metal Testing

Before you submit any jewelry item to a lab to test for heavy metals, you’re going to need to do a little homework. Current state and federal laws regulating lead and cadmium levels in jewelry have mounted hurdles that jewelry makers must clear…