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REVIEW | Jewellery Making Course, Yorkshire

BY EMMA BANKS | 11 Apr 2019

My love for making things started when I was about 9 years old and friendship bracelets were a big thing. Those ones with the brightly coloured thread that you knotted. I could bash out a good 10 an hour and would be dishing them out in the playground before you could sing “If wannabe my lover you gotta get with my friends”.

 

In more recent years, I’ve tried my hand at candle making, knitting, rag rugging (?!?) and have failed pretty miserably at them all (look in my spare room if you don’t believe me). So when I saw that the lovely Zoe, owner of Hello Halfpenny, not only sold her beautiful pieces of jewellery but even invited people into her workshop to make their own designs I knew that was a bit of me!

 

A few minutes walk out of Halifax town centre in the very quirky Croft Myl, was where I found myself one Sunday afternoon ready and raring to make a set of stacking rings fit for my middle finger.

 

After a bit of GCSE Maths to work out the length of silver and copper I’d need for my rings (who said learning Pi would never come in handy!?) I was well away sawing, filing and soldiering like a pro. Harder than it looks – but there were cakes on hand to keep up the energy levels! You make your rings pretty much from scratch and are trusted with a whole range of dangerous looking instruments!

 

Zoe is incredibly friendly and knowledgeable and was on hand the entire time to help you if things all started to go a bit Pete Tong. The sessions last about 3 hours and everyone gets to make 4 rings (1 copper practise and 3 silver).

You’re shown how to create different finishes on the rings with various hammers and oxidising techniques so what you go away with is completely unique and personal to you. I absolutely love my rings and I’m so proud that I’ve actually made them with my own fair hands!

 

I can’t recommend attending one of Zoe’s classes enough – they’re informal, fun and you get a real sense of achievement when you leave. And the fact that you start and finish something in one go rather than it being over a few weeks (I’m all about instant results!) makes it a really winner for me.

 

Zoe’s own handmade silver jewellery (hellohalfpenny.com) is well worth a look at too it’s perfect for Mother’s Day, valentines, bridesmaid gifts – any occasion!

 

Thank you so much for having me!

 

The stacking ring jewellery making course is priced at £55 for more information see www.hellohalfpenny.com

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GREAT GIFT IDEAS FOR HIM | He’ll love this

immersive Crime Scene Investigation Experience in Yorkshire

BY EMMA BANKS | 11 Dec 2019

Why we loved The CSI Experience…
A truly unique “day date” experience that we’ll remember for a long time. It was very well organised and offered something completely different from the norm. From the get-go we were both fully engaged with the hands-on activities and the three hours whizzed by.

 

Cost:
£59 per person

 

This would make a great gift experience for?
Anyone who fancies themselves a bit of a sleuth. If you’re an armchair detective and work out “whodunnit” before Poirot even twiddled his moustache or love watching real crime documentaries then this is for you. Vouchers don’t have to be bought in pairs but I would say that to get the most out of the experience you’d be best off going with a like-minded, crime-fighting friend.

 

Length of experience: 3 hours

 

Location: Skelmanthorpe (20 minutes outside of Huddersfield town centre)

 

Setting the (crime) scene:

Matt and I went into this experience fairly blind. We thought it might be like a murder mystery/escape room style activity but it was so much better.

 

Upon arrival we (and the other 6 participants) all gathered in the briefing room around a big conference table – this would be our base for the day where we kept returning to with evidence to share and cross-reference.

 

After the usual introductions, the friendly and very knowledgeable staff (who all work in the CSI field as their day jobs) set off by teaching us how to take fingerprints, lift footprints – or shoe impressions as they are officially called – and lots of other investigative skills that we would need later on when we were thrown into solving a crime of our own.

Split into two teams we donned our protective white suits, face masks and latex gloves (so as not to contaminate the crime scene obviously!) and were given a CSI tool kit complete with camera, electrostatic dust lifter, evidence bags, police tape and swab sets – basically everything you need when “there’s been a murder”.

 

What happened next I was not expecting! Through the doors and along a corridor were purpose built sets. Rooms, cars, furniture, front gardens and bodies to inspect and unearth potential case solving clues! Along with the guidance from the experts you and your team go about collecting vital details and radioing across to the other team to see if they can help piece it all together.

 

After about an hour and half both groups reconvened in the briefing room and put all our findings together on the investigation board. To wrap things up our CSI host, Paul, took us through a very similar real life crime that mirrored the one we’d be working on and how it came to a successful conviction.

Case closed and off we went feeling like we needed a career change and could give Horatio Caine a run for his money.

 

Get it booked – he’ll love it… and you will too!

 

To find out more and to purchase vouchers for Christmas visit:
https://uniquelylocal.co.uk/experiences/crime-scene-investigator-csi-experience-day/

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