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Ely Folk School

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in Arts & Crafts

Create an Aqua Jasper Necklace


with Kay Vandervort

Calendar Feb 6, 2020 at 1 pm

Thursday, Feb 6, 2020
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Tuition: $20 Materials: $15

Students will make a necklace featuring a free form jasper pendent that has been dyed with a deep aqua. The pendant combines the brown and beige of jasper, but also brings in a beautiful combination of blue and green.

Students will learn about what cords and closures work well, and have a variety of complementary beads to work with in order to design a necklace that features their own personal style. No previous beading experience is required.

About the instructor: Kay Vandervort retired to Ely five years ago and has become very involved in the community. She participates in American Association of University Women, works part time at the Dorothy Molter Museum, and is involved in a book club, writing group, and a number of local discussion groups. She enjoys experimenting with many types of craft media, is a wizard with color and jewelry design, and has taught a variety of creative jewelry classes at the Ely Folk School.


Will run

Create a Druzy Agate Necklace


with Kay Vandervort

Calendar Feb 9, 2020 at 1:30 pm

Sunday, February 9, 2020
1:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Tuition: $20 Materials: $20

Druzy is the formation of tiny crystals on the surface of a gemstone, in this case agate. Each necklace will combine Druzy agate beads, and a selection of stone, glass and metal beads with a Druzy agate focal bead. This is a simple and unique necklace that a novice beader can easily complete in the time allowed for the class.

 About the instructor, Kay Vandervort:

Kay has a degree in secondary education and taught both in high school and technical college before moving to a career in not-for-profit management. She has facilitated trainings at both regional and statewide conferences on topics related to non-profit marketing, volunteer management, and volunteer recruitment and screening. She has taught several jewelry and polymer clay classes in the past at the Ely Folk School.

Kay retired to Ely three years ago after a career as a freelance writer followed by thirty years as a nonprofit executive director. She has taught several jewelry and polymer clay classes in the past at the Ely Folk School, sharing her beautiful creations, her skills, and her playfulness exploring color and creativity.

Tree of Life Necklace


with Elizabeth Engelke

Calendar Feb 10, 2020 at 12 pm

Monday, February 10, 2020
12:00 PM - 4:00 PM 

Tuition: $40  Materials: $15

Wire wrapping is an ancient craft that has been around for thousands of years. Come join as we make a beautiful gemstone tree of life pendant necklace! Elizabeth will guide you through creating your own unique tree of life! We will be making the frame and tree with copper wire and the leaves with 2mm gemstone beads. She will have a colorful variety of tiny stone beads for you to choose from. Bring reading glasses if you have them because the beads are very tiny. 

You will learn some wire wrapping basics including what tools are best to use and how to add a patina to your finished jewelry to make it look like an antique. Some wire wrapping experience is a plus but not a requirement for this class.

Additional materials are available for purchase for $15 if you would like to make another necklace at home.

(Tools are provided for use in class. Feel free to bring your own to use, as well.)

About the Instructor: Elizabeth Engelke is a busy mother of five who loves to make crafts in her spare time. She enjoys learning about how things are made, and as a child was always braiding something or building with the scrap wood her dad brought home.

Elizabeth says, "!I learned how to crochet, how to do some carpentry from watching my dad, learned taxidermy, and in the last 5 years have learned pine needle basketry, micro macrame and wire wrapping. When I discovered wire work jewelry in 2015, I was so amazed by the beautiful pieces of jewelry I saw in pictures that I had to try it.

Elizabeth sells her jewelry at craft shows and outdoor markets in Tower, Ely, Biwabik, Gilbert, Virginia and Hibbing and at Ubetcha in Tower, MN

Create a One-of-a-Kind Bead Embroidered Bracelet


with Kay Vandervort

Calendar Feb 13, 2020 at 10 am

Thursday, February 13, 2020
10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

Tuition: $40 Materials: $20

Learn the technique of bead embroidery while creating a dazzling, one-of-a-kind bracelet. It is a fun and easy way to create interesting texture and color combinations for unique pieces of jewelry. It does not require following a specific pattern or counting beads or stitches, allowing for total creativity, combining color and texture in unique patterns.

This technique is adaptable to other applications such as an embellishing clothing and making necklaces, book covers, or wall hangings. Participants will end up with one completed bracelet about one inch wide and will take home ideas for other projects.

 About the instructor, Kay Vandervort: "Although I've never really thought of myself as an artist, I've had both visual art and one-of-a-kind jewelry items accepted in galleries in both Wisconsin and Michigan. My love of art began in my youth with a mother who did not believe idle hands were a good thing. Our choices were to create something, read, study, garden, or clean. I threw myself into everything except the cleaning part and found I love to experiment with color, texture, and random lines. I make jewelry because I like to wear it and would prefer to wear something of my own design."

Kay retired to Ely three years ago after a career as a freelance writer followed by thirty years as a nonprofit executive director. She is experienced in teaching both high school and adult education courses in communication. She has taught several jewelry and polymer clay classes in the past at the Ely Folk School.

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