Mentored Independent Study – Now THREE Times per Week! 

Hey Jewelry Makers! 

Are you interested in improving your metalsmithing skills or ready to learn something new? Do you occasionally need access to specialty equipment like a bench sheer, buffing machine or big torch? Tired of working alone and want to connect with other metalsmiths? YOU are a perfect candidate for Mentored Independent Study! 

Mentored Study is now available THREE times per week: 
Monday morning 10-1pm with Barbara Knuth  
Tuesday evenings 6-9pm with Juan Reyes 
Thursday mornings 10-1pm with Dana Cassara 

Register to drop in just one time or attend weekly.
Mix and match teachers for a broader learning experience.
Take more than one class per week and receive a discount on the second class! 

Mentored Study is an excellent opportunity to tackle challenging projects, learn fresh skills and discover new equipment in a consistently supportive environment. Ongoing weekly classes allow students to explore a wide range of projects and techniques with instructor guidance. Tailored demonstrations means everyone gets what they need and more often than not, one student’s request opens up a world of possibilities to another! Basic metal working skills required. 

See all the details HERE 



Jewelry Tools and Supply Swap Meet July 24!

If you live in or near Seattle and are in town and are a jeweler, metalsmith or just a gem lover, you will not want to miss this! A big garage sale for local jewelers and metalsmiths to buy, sell, and swap tools and supplies of the trade, what could be more fun? With over 20 vendors, you can also expect an excellent selection! 

NOTE: we have a new location. Fair Isle Brewing in Seattle has opened their doors for our event providing us with a covered outdoor area perfect for our Swap Meet! Note: Fair Isle Brewing is a 21 and up establishment. 

NEW: proceeds of sales from the Danaca Design table will be funding a new studio scholarship, The T.H. Artist Gap Scholarship at Danaca Design. 

In 2021, the Seattle metals community lost a true friend, Todd Hughes. Todd was a meticulous maker and passionate learner. He was also a lover of tools. Many of these have been generously donated to Danaca Design. Some will provide an upgrade to studio equipment and others will be available to purchase during our 2022 Jewelry Tool and Supply Swap Meet. Proceeds from the sale of these and all other items on the Danaca Design Swap Meet table will seed a new scholarship, The T.H. Artist Gap Scholarship. This scholarship, designed to supplement the cost of taking a workshop, will be available by application to students at Danaca Design beginning in September. 

Remember, there is NO CHARGE to attend the Swap Meet and you don’t have to bring anything to swap except some cash:)  Be sure to check out the FREE TABLE too. Who knows what treasures you may find! 

Looking forward to seeing you at Fair Isle Brewing for a long overdue swap meet, a bit of socializing and an exceptional beer if you’re in the mood! Also, plan to grab a bite from GARZON the Latinx Street Food pop up, YUM! 

Come early for the best selection. ALL VENDOR SPOTS must be reserved and are now currently taken. Sunday, July 24, 11am-2pm 


The Danaca Design International RING SMACKDOWN begins TODAY!

Today is the day. The day so many of you have been waiting for. The Danaca Design International RING SMACKDOWN begins TODAY! 

Every morning during the month of April I will be posting information on our Instagram feed @danacdesignstudio about the ring matches of the day. There will be up to four matches each day. The posts will include images, video and the story behind the rings to help you choose your favorite. 

At 9:00 AM Pacific Time; voting opens for exactly 24 hours in our Instagram story. This is where you can vote for your favorite rings! When you are ready, head to our Instagram page @danacadesignstudio and find the stories behind the green flower. There you will tap TOP, BOTTOM, LEFT or RIGHT based on the location of your favorite ring. Don’t worry if the story passes before you get a chance to vote. You can go back. There are going to be some VERY difficult choices…that is just the nature of the game.  

Not sure what I’m talking about? Read more about the competition HERE. 

VERY IMPORTANT: ALL of these rings are available to purchase AND you can see them all in person in our GALLERY SHOWROOM! Seriously, don’t miss this chance to see the rings in real life. They are worth the trip! Request access information to the showroom HERE. 

Battle of the Rings, otherwise known as the Ring Smackdown, is a head-to-head, tournament style, single-elimination juried competition and virtual event. First conceived in the spring of 2020, this event encourages creativity, comradery among artists and a passion for the art of jewelry, most especially the ring. This year our Jurors, Elizabeth Shypertt and Jim Dailing, juried 64 rings from a pool of 136 submissions from 16 countries. The rings will compete in daily matches on Instagram, April 4-29. All 64 rings plus 1 alternate are available for purchase through April, a wonderful opportunity for both collectors and participating artists. 


Have fun and good luck! 


Yukata Jewelry Show Open at Danaca Design 

This week we opened a very special exhibition, Yukata Jewelry Show 2022. This exciting show is a creative collaboration between Okan Arts and Danaca Design. Vintage hand-dyed yukata cotton from Japan is the inspiration for the work in this second iteration of our Yukata Jewelry Show. The fabric, provided by Okan Arts, was sourced from vendors across Japan—antique shops, vintage warehouses, used kimono shops, and pickers. Danaca Design invited twenty artists from across the country to take the challenge—to design a piece of jewelry inspired by or made from this luscious and dynamic fabric. 

We will be posting pieces from the show this month on FB and Instagram but you can see the entire exhibition on our website now or COME VISIT US IN THE GALLERY SHOWROOM! The show is beautiful. If you haven’t visited the showroom yet, now is the time. We’ve never had so much wall space to play with in our gallery! 

View this unique exhibition is online and in the Danaca Design Seattle Showroom March 4-29, 2022 

Find Showroom info HERE! 

See the full Yukata Jewelry collection HERE. 

For additional information visit www.danacadesign.com 

Participating Artists: 
Angela Gleason 
April Ottey 
Carolina Andersson 
Cynthia Toops 
Dana Cassara 
DeAnna Puls 
Helen Cowart 
Jane Pellicciotto 
Juan Reyes 
Laurel Nathanson 
Maia Leppo 
Maru Almeida 
Megan Corwin 
Molly Epstein 
Nancy Bonnema 
Ronda Miller 
Tegan Wallace 
Vicky Zomenou 
Virginia Causey 
Yuko Tanaka 


Battle of the Rings: Ring Smackdown 2022 – CALL TO ARTISTS



Battle of the Rings, otherwise known as the Ring Smackdown, is a head-to-head, tournament style, single-elimination juried competition and virtual event with a top prize of $500.  64 rings will be selected by two jurors and drafted into teams as selected by the jurors. Selected rings will be paired into matches for competition. Matches will be posted daily for exactly 24 hours, to our Instagram story for public vote, April 4-29 at 9:00am PST. Each ring can win up to three points in a single match. One is given to the winner of the Instagram poll; the other two points come from the jurors. The ring with the most points advances to the next round. All selected rings will be posted to our Instagram feed and available to purchase through our online gallery and Danaca Design Showroom.  


  • One submission per artist
  • The ring must be an original design created by submitting artist
  • The ring must not exceed 4x4x4 inches
  • The ring must fit fingers between sizes 5-10
  • No restriction on the nature of material used or shape within above parameters.
  • All selected rings must be available for purchase through Danaca Design Gallery 50/50 split; for the duration of the tournament.
  • All selected rings must be shipped to Danaca Design and the artists will be responsible for return shipping if the ring does not sell.
  • The retail price of the ring must not exceed $1,200
  • Suggested entry fee of $5-$25


Submission Deadline: February 21, 2022 (Enter HERE) 

Artist Notification Date: February 28, 2022 

Rings Due to Gallery: March 15, 2022 

Competition/Show Dates: April 4-29, 2022 

Jurors: Elizabeth Shypertt and Jim Dailing



Q: Can I submit and older ring?
A: Sure! Just not a ring that has previously been entered in the battle.

Q: Can I submit a ring from overseas?
A: Yes!

Q: Can I submit a multiple finger ring?
A: Yes! As long as it fit fingers 5-10.

Battle of the Rings: Ring Smackdown 2022 Jury

The jury has been selected for the Ring Smackdown 2022 and we couldn’t be more pleased! As always, we handpick a well-balanced jury to ensure an exciting and diverse mix of excellent rings for the competition. Representing Team Shanks will be Elizabeth Shypertt, long time gallerist, curator and collector of contemporary jewelry. Jim Dailing, a seasoned teacher and maker of exquisite fine jewelry especially rings, will head team Mandrels.

Read more about our jurors below!


Team Shanks – Elizabeth Shypertt

Elizabeth co-founded and ran Velvet da Vinci Gallery in San Francisco for 23 years. During that time, she organized more than 80 exhibitions including one-person and group shows. Working with other galleries and organizations including the British Crafts Council and the National Museums of Scotland, she curated and organized many traveling exhibitions, including Chess, Rings, and Anti-War Medals. The last show she curated at Velvet da Vinci was La Frontera, an exhibition about the Mexico/US border which opened at the Franz Mayer Museum in Mexico City. It was later on display at Velvet da Vinci, and at the Museum of Art and Design in New York City.

Since leaving the gallery, Elizabeth has curated jewelry shows for the Petaluma Arts Center in Petaluma, California, the Center for Enamel Arts in Berkely, California and for Shibumi Gallery, also in Berkeley. 2019 she curated a show of SNAG Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, Tex Gieling for the Museum of Craft and Design in San Francisco.

She has been a juror for the Emeryville Celebration of the Arts in Emeryville, California, for the Academy of Art in San Francisco among other venues and also for the publication, 500 Pendants and Lockets by Lark Books.

Elizabeth is a long-standing member of the local Metal Arts Guild and the Art Jewelry Forum and was a board member for both organizations. She is currently on the board of the Society of North American Goldsmiths.

She has recently taken a new position at the Museum of Craft and Design in San Francisco as Jewelry Manager for the Museum Store.


Team Mandrels – Jim Dailing

Jim Dailing has been designing and creating mostly one-of-a-kind engagement and wedding rings for clients from around the world for nearly 40 years.  He specializes in creating rings. Jim writes, “I love hands and how each hand is unique and because of all that hands can do, express and create.  I choose to create mostly engagement and wedding rings because of their importance to my clients and I’m drawn to the fact that my rings will be around long after I am gone.”

Jim holds a BFA from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and MFA from the Tyler School of Art. He has taught at the University of Oregon, Oregon College of Art and Crafts, University of Portland, Central Oregon Community College as well as classes and workshops at schools and craft centers around the country. Currently, he teaches virtually and in-person workshops in stone setting, gold alloying and fabrication and wax carving.


Pop Up Jewelry Event with Ryan Gardner

Join us on Friday December 3, 5-7pm for a pop up trunk show with jeweler Ryan Gardner. This will be our first in-person event in nearly two years! Location to be announced.

Ryan is also teaching a stone carving class on Saturday and Sunday, December 4 and 5. We have ONE spot left! Learn more and register HERE.

Ryan Gardner
Participation in the arts was always important to me growing up. A strong arts program in high school influenced my decision to pursue a degree in the arts. I chose the arts program at Bowling Green State University in northwest Ohio where I discovered and fell in love with metals. I was introduced to many artists, including Michael Boyd, who became an inspiration for me.
Upon graduation I apprenticed for Michael Boyd at his studio in Colorado. That experience turned into an eight year adventure that continues today. It was with Michael that I learned to work with and manipulate stone, adding a new element to my love of jewelry design.
Since being in Colorado I have started my own business, Ryan Gardner Designs. I now showcase my work in galleries across the country. I love working with combining stone and metal in new ways creating works of art for people to enjoy in their daily lives.

Weekly Gallery Artist Feature

Get to know the Danaca Design Gallery artists and their work by joining us on Instagram or Facebook for regular weekly features. Beginning the first week of August, we will highlight the jewelry and story of one artist from our gallery each week. Over the course of the week, expect to see multiple photos of their work, details about their artistic process and a few personal stories too. 

As it turns out this project will take us straight through to the end of the year! 

We hope you’ll enjoy learning a little more about our artists and the diverse collection in our unique gallery. Hopefully you’ll find a couple great holiday gifts as well! 

View the jewelry HERE.


Battle of the Rings/Ring Smackdown 2021. VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITES MAY 3- 28!


Dear friends, 

I recently read a blog post by Betsy Brown: Update from an Epidemic, about the new buzzword languishing.” Betsy wrote, “It can mean the blah, unmotivated feeling we are all having. Not quite depression but definitely not feeling joy. Languishing can also mean being stuck in an unpleasant place or situation.” I am definitely experiencing a little bit of that. How about you? Who would’ve thought, one year later, we would need a pick me up? 

Languish no longer! Join us next month for an exciting event, Battle of the Rings, otherwise known as the Ring Smackdowna head-to-head, tournament style, single-elimination juried competition and virtual event. First conceived and produced in the spring of 2020, this event encourages creativity, comradery among artists and a passion for the art of jewelry, most especially THE RING. This year our esteemed Jurors, Cappy Counard and Kirk Lang, juried 64 rings from a pool of 166 submissions from 24 countries. The rings will compete in daily matches on Instagram, May 3-28. 

The guidelines for this competition are simple. The rings must be of an original design, fit within a certain size restriction, with a maximum purchase price of $1,200.  These exceptional rings are gold, plastic and everything in between. Some are perfect for daily wear; others are best suited for your art collection. MANY of them move, spin, spiral, flip, fly and shoot expressing an over-arching theme of play. Others are just simply magnificently beautiful, masterfully constructed or irresistibly precious. No two are even remotely alike. All 64 rings plus 9 alternates are available for purchase throughout the month of May, a wonderful opportunity for both collectors and participating artists. 

View, read about, and purchase ALL of the rings HERE

View ALL the matches HERE 

How to Participate: 

The jurors have “drafted” 32 rings each, onto their teams The Shanks and The Mandrels. Daily matches between the teams will be posted to our Instagram story for public vote EVERYDAY, May 3-28 at 9:00 AM Pacific Standard Timeup to four per day! 

All voting happens online, at the Danaca Design Studio Instagram account only @danacadesignstudioRead about the rings first and then VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITESVoting happens through our Instagram Stories for 24 hours. While in the app, tap our flower icon by our account name. This will reveal our current story and the daily matches. Pick your favorite rings in the match by tapping “TOP” or “BOTTOM” OR “LEFT” or “RIGHT” in the poll.  You can view the poll multiple times before voting but you can only vote once–one vote per person per ring. The winner of the Instagram poll advances into the next round. Click on the links in the Instagram post to view more pictures of each ring.  

This is a VERY exciting event. DON’T MISS IT! 

One Ring to Rule Them All; May the Best Ring Win! 


Until then we have ONE MORE Jewelry Trivia Night, THIS WEEK, Thursday, April 29 6:30 – 8:00 PM PST. Test your jewelry knowledge! Find all the details HERE

See our Current Class Listings HERE

Learn more about these events, up-coming classes and our tool and supply shop at www.danacadesign.com where we have been keeping it fun and creative for nearly 18 years! 



Battle of the Rings: Ring Smackdown 2021

Battle of the Rings is a head-to-head, tournament style, single-elimination juried competition and virtual event with a top prize of $500. Two jurors will draft 32 rings each onto their team. The selected 64 rings will be paired into matches that will be posted daily to our Instagram page and story, May 3-28 at 9:00am PST. The public will vote throughout the day for their favorite ring, the ring with the most votes, advances into the next round. All selected rings will be available to purchase through our online gallery and in the store-front gallery, circumstances permitting.  

Competition/Show Dates: May 3-28, 2021 

Esteemed Jurors: Cappy Counard and Kirk Lang 

View all 166 entries HERE.


One Year Ago and Approaching Normalcy, with Caution!

Dear Friends,

One year ago, I was expecting a visitor from Beijing. A day before her scheduled departure, ALL flights were canceled from China. Shortly thereafter, she was in TOTAL lockdown. It was then I began to think, maybe this virus thing is more serious than we know…

None-the-less, we took our annual trip to Arizona, via Joshua Tree, for the Yuma Arts SymposiumAs a joke (I think) someone passed out surgical masks during the annual pin exchange. It was funny, ironic and of course, later I regretted not keeping it!  Well, the rest is history, one with which we are all too familiar. 

For the first time in a year, I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. How about you? 

You may or may not be aware that I made some significant changes to the studio last summer. I put the gallery into storage, bought us jewelry benches and expanded the classroom into the front of the building. We are now a six-bench studio, rather than 12, with twice as much space: six very comfortable, socially distanced benches with a complete set of hand tools and a hammering station at each bench. These changes allowed us to finish out most of our rescheduled classes last year and they will allow us to move forward towards normalcy. Albeit slowly, forward we must move. 

Below are some of the activities for you can look forward to at Danaca Design Studio in the next few weeks, including Jewelry Trivia (this Thursday!), Ring Smackdown 2021 and IN STUDIO CLASSES! 

FIRST: ZOOM JEWELRY TRIVIA was a BLAST, so we are doing it again, this Thursday, FEBRUARY 25, 6:30-8:00. Looking for some good, clean fun and a little community building, join Danaca Design and Andy Cooperman and other jewelers and metalsmiths from across the country to TEST YOUR JEWELRY KNOWLEDGE! You must register HERE to participate! 

SECOND: It’s official. THE RING SMACKDOWN 2021 IS ON! Battle of the Rings, otherwise known as the Ring Smackdown, is a head-to-head, single-elimination juried ring competition and virtual event with a top prize of $500. #maythebestringwin. We are pleased to announce Cappy Counard and Kirk Lang as our 2021 esteemed jurors. SUBMISSION DEADLINE MARCH 31. Please share this call and find ALL the details HERE! 

LAST: but not least, WE’VE GOT CLASSES ON THE SCHEDULE! I know some of you are ready to get back into the studio and well, some of us are too. And while we are not 100% back to normal we are definitely working towards it starting with top qualityin studio classes. The classes are small and a bit shorter, windows are open with a refreshing cross-breeze, and of course everyone is masked but other than that, it’s pretty normal and just as much fun! See what’s on the schedule next below and all the classes HERE. 

Kiln Fire Enameling Basics IFebruary 28. Get a taste for timeless and vibrant beauty of colored glass on metal it in this quick one-day workshop with Michelle Zeidman. Details HERE. 

It Ain’t Just A Drill, HANDS-ON: Getting the Most Out Of Your Flex Shaft, March 6 and 7So, you’re a jeweler or metalsmith about to be stranded on a desert island (for some inexplicable reason this island has, along with coconuts, electricity).  You can bring only one tool. What tool do you bring? Andy Cooperman will show you why it should be a flexible shaft. Details HERE. 

Bang & Bend: Small-Scale Jewelry ForgingMarch 26-28. Moving metal with a hammer—forging—lies at the very heart of jewelry and metalsmithing and is one of its great joys with Andy Cooperman. Details HERE. 


We are looking forward to seeing you soon!