So, I was lucky enough to snag one of this year's Halstead Design Challenge kits. The Halstead company put together these little packets, full of all kinds of metal goodies, and issued the challenge to create a brooch out of the components, following the theme of "Memento". All proceeds from the sale of the kits, went to SNAG, and the best of the best are going to be on display at the conference in New Orleans this spring.

There were a limited number of kits available, and I'm so happy I was able to get one. I missed last year's challenge, because I hesitated. I'll admit, the theme "Kinetic" scared me off, but the exhibition of the finished works that were displayed at SNAGNext in Asheville, was one of my favorite things from the whole conference. Plus, "Memento" is right up my ally!

The kit was full of all sorts of fun bits of chain, sheet metal, wire, and beads in copper, sterling silver, and brass. That daisy/cathedral windows piece in the top left is totally my favorite. I'm still kicking around ideas, but I'm excited to get started. I'm also super excited to see what everyone else creates.

So how about you? Who else was able to grab a kit? Who else can't wait to see the next round of the Halstead Challenge?

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Images of these kits have been popping up online in lots of places, I am very glad to see how excited people are about this project and the kit. I am one of the organizers of the project together with Hilary Halstead Scott and Sam Skelton so, unfortunately, I cannot participate myself... damn ethics.

Wishing you and everyone else lots of fun - and remember: In addition to the photo you can add as many other materials as you like and you can alter the kit materials in any way you want, just be sure you use at least 50% of the kit components in the finished piece.

Like Liz, I too am looking much forward to the results! Let me know here in this blog if there are questions.

Thanks Brigitte! I think you should be allowed to have a kit and make a piece, just for fun! Damn ethics indeed!

Thanks too for that brief re-cap of the rules. I knew we had to use a certain percentage of the kit, but hadn't had a chance to to look at the rules again. And thanks for the reminder that we CAN add other materials.

I was able to successfully acquire a kit too (largely through aggressively refreshing my browser...it was like buying tickets to a quickly sold out concert!). I am thrilled to have a one/off project that can deviate from my other projects and requires some creative problem solving and using materials that I wouldn't otherwise. 

Hello Adriane, Very good to hear about your being prompted to use materials you wouldn't otherwise. That's another valid point for people to consider: breaking out of your trot, trying something new often changes how we look at our "usual" work. I am glad you got a kit! Can't wait to see what you'll do with it.

Hi! I managed to get one this year, mainly because I practically got there within the first few hours of it going on sale (despite the time difference here in the UK!). It's going to be my first Halstead challenge but the project fits very much into the way I work. Also, lately I have been more and more interested in participatory projects as not only they challenge the way we make but, probably more importantly for me at the moment, they are a fantastic way to connect with fellow jewellery artists around the world in a way that would have never been possible before the internet and, undoubtedly, social media!

Looking forward to seeing everybody's pieces and I too wish everybody a lot of fun!

That's perfect, Lieta! Love your international  outlook. You are so right, 10 years ago, none of this could have happened this quickly and on this scale. Enjoy, and let us know how you're coming along.

We just got our hands one 1 Halstead Design Kit. Just one. Are you interested? Please email Tara Jecklin at the SNAG office tjecklin@snagmetalsmith.org asap and we can ship it to you! 

The kit was picked up :) Thanks for your interest in this challenge project.

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Nisa Blackmon

"Symbihome", 2017

Copper, vitreous enamel, luster.

6.5"l x 4.5"w x 1.25"h.

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