Metal clay jewellery making holiday

South West, Gascony, France

8 days from
per person

Average user rating

Holiday Itinerary

The setting of your 7 night jewellery making holiday is in the glorious South West of France, in the peaceful and renowned region of Gascony, in a beautifully restored farmhouse which is the perfect place to relax and unwind.

With expert tuition from your talented tutor Caroline, you’ll learn the art of jewellery making and will design and make exquisite jewellery to take home with you at the end of your trip.

But you will not make any old jewellery; this is a jewellery making course with a difference. On this course, you will learn how to use precious metal clays (PMC, art clays etc) to craft pieces of silver jewellery, and these luxury items are something you will treasure. 

Metal clays are a new jewellery making product which are easy to mould and shape – just like clay – so you’re not limited to what you can design. Watch as the metal clay is fired and turns to pure silver before your very eyes on this unique and innovative course.

This metal clay jewellery making course includes 6 days of tuition which will be spent in the well-equipped studio learning all the skills you need to make a variety of different pieces. Your jewellery made from silver metal clay is pure silver and is the perfect gift idea - handmade and individually designed by you – for a special person.

But it’s not all ‘work’ and no play - your hosts also make sure that you have time to relax and to sample the delights of Gascony, which is a gourmet’s paradise including local produce from delicious duck to succulent wild boar and charming local wines, not forgetting the allure of Gascony Armagnac, which will tickle your taste buds.

If your partner wishes to stay with you but isn't as keen to make jewellery, we have the perfect solution. We also offer a 7 night cookery expereince which runs concurrently with the jewellery making holiday and is the perfect way to discover the delicious delicacies and tantalising dishes of the region through fun and informal cookery classes and culinary excursions. Caroline's husband Adam is a passionate cook and he will guide your partner through the delights of French cooking.

Return home, not only with some amazing memories, but also with some luxurious silver jewellery, made by your own hands, to cherish forever.

Who is it suitable for?
- Suitable for all levels from beginners to those who have tried jewellery making in the past
- Minimum age 18
- Your hosts and tutors speak English and French

I'm travelling solo - can I join?
- These holidays make great singles holidays as there are NO single supplements and you will have your own private room for no additional cost
- There is a discount for 2 people travelling together and sharing a room, please see the 'Costing and extras' tab for more details

Cookery holiday for non-participating partners
- If you want to join your partner on holiday but don’t want to make your own jewellery, we have the perfect cookery holiday alternative for you
- This 7 night/8 day cookery course will give you real knowledge about real French food, spend your days cooking up a storm in the kitchen and visiting local producers and markets to discover the real cuisine and culture of France
- Follow this link for more information on the French cooking holiday course

When can I start?
- This course starts on set dates year round and starts on a Thursday or Saturday
- Courses run for 7 nights/8 days
- If you can’t find the date you want, we can request additional dates so please email us on and we’ll check availability for your preferred day of arrival

Typical itinerary
The itinerary is for guidance only and is subject to change depending on the group’s needs and wishes but is typically as follows:

Day 1: Arrival day
- Arrive at Agen train station to be greeted by your hosts before being driven to the farmhouse where your holiday will begin (airport collections can be arranged upon request for a supplement-please see the costing and extras tab)
- Settle into your charming room before getting to know your fellow students over delicious aperitifs
- Enjoy a social evening with a 3 course gourmet dinner served in the farmhouse kitchen along with a short introduction from your hosts about what to expect over the next few days

Day 2: Hollow forms and syringe workshop and wine tasting
- This morning after breakfast you will go to a local delightful village market to explore the area to discuss your first project designs with the rest of the group and your tutor Caroline
- You will then return home to begin your first jewellery making class
- Today you will learn the technique of making hollow forms, which is perfect for creating hollow forms such as classical silver ball earrings or a beautiful textured bead pendant for earrings 
- Caroline will teach you the basic techniques with using precious metal clay (PMC) to give you maximum freedom to develop your own designs
- You will also learn syringe work with bronzes, and use stones and semi precious beads to create your unique designs
- A delicious lunch will be served by the pool or in the farmhouse kitchen
- This afternoon, you will learn about the processes of designing, creating and finishing your pieces, including how to use tools such as kilns and torch burners, sanding and polishing tools
- Once your fine silver piece is finished you will be taught to add findings and beads if chosen so that your jewellery is ready to wear 
- Late afternoon you will visit a beautiful chateau famous for its aperitifs and wines for an afternoon of wine tasting
- Dinner will be served back at the farmhouse giving you time to relax in the lounge or by the swimming pool firstly, or to take advantage of one of the onsite activities such as table tennis or cycling
Day 3: Naturals and fingerprinting jewellery making workshop and Armagnac tasting
- After a leisurely breakfast, you will choose something natural of your choice, such as a leaf, to influence your fine silver jewellery designs today
- Lunch will be served by the pool or in the farmhouse kitchen with views of the countryside all around to help inspire your creative side 
- After lunch, you will create a your own personal fingerprint jewellery 
- Fingerprint jewellery is when you set the prints of loved ones (or even pets!) into fine silver
- This is a unique process and the perfect gift or memento to keep for yourself
- Early evening, you will visit a family run Armagnac distillery (which Gascony is famous for) and learn how it is made and the history behind it and, more importantly, tasting the Armagnac and local produce
- A 3 course gourmet meal will then be served back at the farmhouse kitchen accompanied with local delicious wines

Day 4: Free day
- Today is a free day for you to spend at your leisure
- Choose to spend more time perfecting your metal clay techniques and working on your jewellery in the studio, or take time to relax by the swimming pool with a good book
- All meals are included today, and enjoy a well-earned rest before your cookery experience begins!

Day 5: Making glass cabochons using glass fusing and visit to Condom
- After breakfast, you’ll choose your glass and colours and learn how to prepare the glass for fusing
- Once made, these can be used in learning the techniques for setting stones and setting them in one of your own designs
- Late morning we will go to the pretty market town of Condom for coffee and a chat with local artists living in the area to gain an insight into their creative vision and help to give you ideas for new designs
- Lunch will be taken out in Condom with the group, before returning to the farmhouse to finish your projects or relax
- A 3 course gourmet meal will then be served in the grounds or the farmhouse kitchen this evening

Day 6: Learning about metal clays and wine tasting
- Following breakfast, you will try other types of metal clay in the workshop and learn how they work and are fired
- Try your hand using bronzes and coppers, or what is available for your week
- You will have fun making your chosen designs using the different clays and new techniques
- Lunch will be served by the pool or in the farmhouse kitchen depending on the season
- Late afternoon you will visit a beautiful chateau famous for its aperitifs and wines for an afternoon of wine tasting
- Dinner will be served back at the farmhouse giving you time to relax in the lounge or by the swimming pool firstly, or to take advantage of one of the onsite activities such as table tennis or cycling

Day 7: Day group excursion
- Relax with a delicious breakfast this morning before heading out on a fun excursion for the day
- Today you’ll enjoy an excursion to a location of your choice!
- Your hosts will take you to either Dune de Pila, Bordeaux city, the Pyrenees mountains or Biarritz, depending on the groups preferences
- Explore the stunning scenery and relax on your final day, and enjoy lunch whilst you out
- This evening you’ll return home for your final dinner, where you’ll reflect on the week and how much you have learnt

Day 8: Departure day
- After breakfast, guests are asked to check out by 10am
- You are welcome to relax and enjoy some free time if your flight is not until later in the day, before being taken to the airport or train station for your return journey
- You will return home with fantastic memories, beautiful unique jewellery, and memories and new skills to last you a lifetime

About your jewellery tutor
- Your friendly and enthusiastic tutor is Caroline, who has been a qualified jewellery teacher for over 20 years and has experience in setting up and running training centres teaching practical skills
- She is a senior instructor in both PMC and Art Clay and has experience in using a wide range of clays
- Her love for teaching is reinforced every time a student looks in wonder at what they have designed and created themselves
- Caroline is passionate about jewellery and creative design, and she will be on hand at all times to assist you and help you to create beautiful jewellery
- Caroline’s husband Adam will also be happy to suggest activities in the area and will be cooking delicious gourmet meals during your stay

What will I learn?
- You will learn the fundamentals of working with precious metal clay, art clay etc and gain a greater understanding of what the product is and the different types of metal clay
- Work with different clays including bronze and copper clays
- Learn to use metal clay to create your own jewellery including rings
- How to use a range of machines such as the kiln and torch burner to achieve different effects
- How to unleash your creative side and design your own jewellery
- To make your own glass cabochons and learn to fuse glass
- A range of techniques such as sanding and finishing techniques
- How to set semi-precious stones
- Make hollow forms such as fine silver classic French ball earrings
- Influence your designs using nature, such as leaves and twigs
- Learn to make your own settings and use ready made settings
- On hand advice on setting up your own metal clay business
- How to photograph and package your jewellery to show it off to its full potential
- Take home beautiful unique jewellery to be proud of, and skills which will last you a lifetime

Where will I be staying?
- You will stay in the beautiful Baron Figres, a 150 year old farmhouse in the lovely Gascony countryside with a renovated gite attached
- The farmhouse has been renovated to a high standard combining natural features with modern touches
- The farmhouse has 3 twin/double bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms
- There is a large, homey kitchen in the farmhouse which has a table that can seat 14 people
- There is a beautiful gite attached to the farmhouse which has 2 twin/double ensuite bedrooms with sweeping views of the countryside
- Downstairs there is a spacious living area with satellite TV and music system, perfect for relaxing evenings
- There is a fully equipped kitchen which guests are welcome to use
- Outside there is a BBQ terrace and the farmhouse boasts its own private outdoor swimming pool (12m x 6m, May-September)
- The farmhouse is surrounded by 50 acres of meadows and woodlands
- Accommodation is included for 7 nights / 8 days
- No single supplements for solo travellers, you will automatically have your own private bedroom for no extra charge
- Check in any time after 4pm on day 1 and check out by 10am on day 8

Restricted mobility access
Please find below some information regarding the accommodation and location of the holiday which may be useful when deciding if this is the right holiday for you; should you have an further questions, please contact us and we will be happy to help
- We generally do not recommend this location for those with restricted mobility
- The holiday is based in the countryside, and does include some walking
- The accommodation has no bedrooms or bathrooms on the ground floor, therefore one must be comfortable with stairs

Are meals included?
- All breakfasts, lunches, dinners and refreshments (wine, tea, coffee etc) are included for this course
- The jewellery school use fresh, local produce where possible and Caroline’s husband Adam is a keen cook making the most of the delicious local foods and wines in his cooking
- If you have dietary requests these must be communicated to us at the time of booking, vegetarians can catered for

What can I do in my free time?
- During your free time, there is plenty to do at your farmhouse accommodation including relaxing by the heated swimming pool (May-September)
- The jewellery school offers a range of extracurricular activities onsite which are free of charge including table tennis, basketball, shooting, archery, cycling and board games to name a few!
- There are numerous fêtes, music festivals and exhibitions in the surrounding areas through the year and your host Caroline will be happy to advise you during your stay
- The closest towns are Nérac and Condom, and your host will be happy to suggest activities and transport should you wish to explore these during your stay