She's introduced two new concepts: reverse bezel construction and mold-making. To make a mold, we just take the object we want to copy and basically pour a liquid rubber around it. The rubber cures and the mold can later be used to cast new objects. My instructor either making multiple copies of a small object for use in a bracelet or necklace or making an object to be cast in a more precious metal (like gold). I haven't decided which approach I want to take but I'll keep thinking about it.
I've started working on the reverse bezel. In a bezel setting, the bezel band (the one that encircles the stone) is soldered to the metal and the the stone and bezel band are both visible. In a reverse bezel setting, the bezel setting sits below the metal so that the stone pushes through the bottom instead of sitting on top. I'm going to put other circles around the reverse bezel setting to either create a flower- or grape- shaped pendant. I might add some other, smaller, gems to give extra sparkle to the finished piece.
I looked through her selection of stones and picked one that had some flash in the middle. It turns out that I picked a star ruby. It's very low quality for a ruby but it's a gorgeous stone nonetheless. The star shows through in the right light so it's hard to see but the flash is lovely on its own.
I do love this metalsmithing class. I can hardly wait to finish designing and finishing this piece.