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$7,309 pledged of $50,000 goal
backers
By Hugo Kohl
$7,309 pledged of $50,000 goal
backers

About this project

My name is Hugo Kohl and I am a fine jewelry manufacturer in Harrisonburg, Virginia. I use my collection of antique, hand-engraved hubs, dies, and rolls to bring to life some of the most incredible and exclusive jewelry ever designed.

I want to change the world by offering people the opportunity to have an intensive "making" experience in my factory that will inspire them to share The Gospel of Craft wherever they go.

The Gospel of Craft is a project that brings the transforming experience of making to the world.

Click the gold bracelet and steel roll to see more images of my workshop, tools and the things we make.
Click the gold bracelet and steel roll to see more images of my workshop, tools and the things we make.

What we want to do: Relocate our workshop to a larger space in the Ice Factory complex in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and design it so we will be able to share The Gospel of Craft with the world.

This is an architect's blueprint of my new workshop in the Ice Factory.
This is an architect's blueprint of my new workshop in the Ice Factory.

The Gospel of Craft is not a lecture. It is an experience you have with your hands, hopefully inspiring you to go out and share the idea that you can shape your life with your hands by "making." In this purpose-built workshop, we will be able to create a space where visitors can observe the tools and processes as well as have hands-on experiences that end with a finished piece of wearable art to take home. Included in this fabulously outfitted workshop is a more than 6,000-piece collection of antique, hand-engraved jewelry artwork in the form of hubs, dies, and rolls, as well as the associated tooling to bring it to bear.

A selection of antique, hand-engraved steel jewelry hubs from our vault.
A selection of antique, hand-engraved steel jewelry hubs from our vault.

Hubs are full-size, 3D, hand-engraved masters executed in steel. This collection is rich in symbolism and offers the end user a broad and deep range of ways to express themselves with personal adornment. They are also part of a fascinating collection of ingenious tools and technology that represent the very best exercises in creative mechanical problem solving.

Why this is important: This project is important because it will allow us to offer experiences that enable successful outcomes in countless ways as people come to understand that they are capable of shaping the world around them with their hands. Visitors to this workshop will be able to participate in a experience we call Made By Me. Through this guided exercise, the participant starts with a piece of metal and finishes with a masterpiece to take home.  

This workshop also offers the opportunity to observe our highly skilled artisans as they practice the craft of fine jewelry making. We are staffed with engravers, stone setters, goldsmiths, silversmiths, enamelists, model makers, and tool and die makers. In this workshop, you can see all the magic happen up close.

The ability to do tasks with hands and tools—fix a leaky pipe, change a car tire, prepare healthy food, make a beautiful piece of jewelry, or any other of a long list of tasks we used to take for granted—have become mysterious, esoteric, and often frightening challenges for many people. When these tools are properly set up, they can be used by folks of all ages to experience the empowering action of making and discover how imagination can be expressed through one's hands.

We need your help to get these tools into a larger, more accessible space where we can share The Gospel of Craft. The funds we raise through this Kickstarter project will be used to build out a larger, more accessible workshop in the old Cassco Ice Factory where the making of beautiful pieces of jewelry and other metalware can take place and be shared in an interactive environment. This workshop, which includes a spectacular assortment of tool steel engravings and carvings, will incorporate a hub vault designed to display our collection of antique, hand-engraved hubs, dies, and rolls for all to see and enjoy.

REWARDS

In order to make your Kickstarter crowd-funding experience as much fun for you as possible, we have selected a great list of rewards.

Reward #1. Pledge $10 or more, and we will send you our eternal gratitude for helping to get this great project off the ground, plus a personally autographed image of some of my favorite hubs that is suitable for framing and hanging some place where it will inspire you to make. I'll also write your name on our "Wall of Makers," or you can show up in person and autograph it yourself.

This is an assortment of some of my favorite hubs.
This is an assortment of some of my favorite hubs.

Reward #2.  For $25, we will make to your finger size a sterling silver ring, model #WR025, that is made using one of our antique, hand-engraved steel hubs. This intricately designed ring features a lovely floral motif. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

WR025 in sterling silver
WR025 in sterling silver

Reward #3. For $50, we will make, in your finger size, a sterling silver cigar band ring, model #CB020. The design comes from an antique hand-engraved steel hub that was intended to be a master model for a bracelet link. We've added a beautiful shank and made a one-of-a-kind ring. It will come to you in time for Christmas and will be packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper and ready for gift-wrapping.

CB020 sterling silver
CB020 sterling silver

Reward #4.  For $75, you get a beautiful pair of sterling silver earrings, model #ER030, hanging from spring-loaded lever backs. These earrings, created using one of our antique hand-engraved steel hubs, feature a cinquefoil flower and leaf design. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

ER030 sterling silver
ER030 sterling silver

Reward #5. For $100, we will make you a lovely pair of sterling silver filigree earrings, model #ER001. These earrings were made from one of  our antique hand-engraved steel hubs. They are an elegant Art Deco masterpiece for you to wear. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

ER001 sterling silver earrings
ER001 sterling silver earrings

Reward #6. For $125 we will make you a lovely sterling silver filigree ring, model #CB021, set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is made using an antique hand-engraved steel hub that was originally intended to be a bracelet link. We added a beautifully engraved shank and put a stone mounting on the top. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

CB021 sterling silver, diamond
CB021 sterling silver, diamond

Reward #7. For $150, we will make you an incredible sterling silver filigree ring, model #R120, set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is a classic Art Deco design and was made using one of our antique hand-engraved steel hubs. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

R120 sterling silver, diamond
R120 sterling silver, diamond

Reward #8. For $175, we will make you a fabulously engraved, die-rolled bracelet in solid sterling silver, model #B025.C. The antique, hand-engraved roll we use to make this bracelet imparts a stunning design of a running scroll with flowers over the entire bracelet. Because this bracelet is die rolled, the metal is left with a spring hardness and will last for generations with normal wear. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

B025.C sterling silver
B025.C sterling silver

Reward #9. For $225, we will make you a beautifully engraved die-rolled ring in solid sterling silver, model #BR026, set with a small diamond or any other birthstone of your choice, in your finger size. The antique, hand-engraved roll we use to make this ring imparts a stunning design of a framed flower over an engraved field. Because this ring is die rolled, the metal is left with a spring hardness and will last for generations with normal wear. The first 25 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

BR026 sterling silver, diamond
BR026 sterling silver, diamond

Reward #10. For $400, we will make you a stunning cigar band ring, model #CB022, in your choice of solid 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold. This ring is made using one of our antique, hand-engraved steel hubs that was originally intended to be a bracelet link. We curved it to fit your finger and added a shank to make this lovely ring. The design features a classic scroll motif and will be made to your finger size. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

CB022 in 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold
CB022 in 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold
  • Reward #11. For $500, we will make you a gorgeous filigree ring, model #R121, in your choice of either 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold, set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is a classic Art Deco design and was made using one of our antique hand engraved steel hubs. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping 
R121 14k white, yellow rose or green gold, diamond
R121 14k white, yellow rose or green gold, diamond

Reward #12. For $1,000, you get to come to Hugo Kohl's new workshop and work with a master craftsman as he guides you through the process of fabricating your own sterling silver die-rolled bracelet and, yes, you get to set the diamonds yourself. After completing the bracelet, we will celebrate with a nice bottle of Prosecco (of course, only if you're of age). This is a full hands-on experience. First, you'll make several practice bracelets in copper and set stones in your practice bracelets before finally moving to a sheet of silver. You will be able to set up the equipment, cut your ribbon of metal in an antique slitter, run it through a rolling mill under a hand-engraved steel roll, stamp it with hallmarks, trim the stamping to size, and form it into a bracelet shape to fit your wrist (or the wrist of your loved one). You will also select and set three diamonds, and finally, polish your masterpiece. This is a visceral, hands-on experience in a fully outfitted and serious workshop. While in the workshop, you will be able to immerse yourself in the culture of making. You will be allowed to enter our hub vault, browse our die sets, and put your hands on some of the coolest tools and machines ever assembled in one place. You will also have the opportunity to personally write your name on our "Wall of Makers." This experience will be documented by a professional photographer. 

B014.C sterling silver,  diamond bracelet
B014.C sterling silver, diamond bracelet

Reward #13. This is the big kahuna! For $5,000, you get to come to Hugo's workshop and work with a master craftsman as he guides you through the process of fabricating your own 14k gold* die-rolled bracelet and, yes, you get to set the stones yourself. This is a full hands-on experience. First, you'll make several practice bracelets in copper and set stones in your practice bracelets before finally moving to a sheet of silver. You will be able to set up the equipment, cut your ribbon of metal in an antique slitter, run it through a rolling mill under a hand-engraved steel roll, stamp it with hallmarks, trim the stamping to size, and form it into a bracelet shape to fit your wrist (or the wrist of your loved one). You will also select and set three diamonds, and finally, polish your masterpiece. After completing the bracelet, we'll celebrate with a nice bottle of Prosecco (of course, only if you're of age). This is a visceral, hands-on experience in a fully outfitted and serious workshop. While in the workshop, you will be able to immerse yourself in the culture of making. You will be allowed to enter our hub vault, browse our die sets, and put your hands on some of the coolest tools and machines ever assembled in one place. You will also have the opportunity to personally write your name on our "Wall of Makers." This experience will be documented by a professional photographer.

*Provided that spot gold is below $1,800 per ounce.

B014.C in 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold, diamonds
B014.C in 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold, diamonds

Risks and challenges

There are numerous challenges throughout this ambitious project. Fortunately we are experienced at what we do and highly adaptable. We understand the technology we are dealing with and are passionate about what we do. Having said that, the technology we are working with demands a wide array of mechanical capabilities. There are few people still alive who actually worked with these tools and machines in person so we often find ourselves using our imagination to help solve processes and methods. We also are dealing with machines that have no spare parts supply or owners manual, so when dealing with broken or missing parts we end up going through several iterations in the machine shop before getting it right. In other words, we do a lot of head-scratching, imagining, backtracking and figuring things out. The biggest challenge we face is gathering the funds we need to finish the last part of the project, which is to build out a workshop that is both efficient to manufacturing as well as a place where visitors can observe and participate in the process.

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Our eternal gratitude for helping us get this great project off the ground, plus an autographed image of some of my favorite hubs that is suitable for framing and hanging someplace where it will inspire you to make. I'll also write your name on our "Wall of Makers" or you can show up in person and autograph it yourself.

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    Ships to Only United States
    4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    For $25, we will make to your finger size a sterling silver ring, model #WR025, that is made using one of our antique, hand-engraved steel hubs. This intricately designed ring features an exquisite floral motif. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    44 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    For $50, we will make you a sterling silver whimsy ring, model #CB020. The design derives from a hub intended to make a bracelet link. We added a fancy shank and made it into a beautiful ring. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    12 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    For $75, you get a beautiful pair of sterling silver earrings, model #ER030, hanging from spring-loaded lever backs. These earrings, created using one of our antique hand-engraved steel hubs, feature a cinquefoil flower and leaf design. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    For $100, we will make you a lovely pair of sterling silver filigree earrings, model #ER001. These earrings were made from one of our antique hand-engraved steel hubs. They are an elegant Art Deco masterpiece for you to wear. The first 200 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    For $125, a lovely sterling silver filigree ring, model #CB021, set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is made using an antique hand-engraved steel hub that was originally intended to be a bracelet link. We added a beautifully engraved shank and put a stone mounting on the top and will set it with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    7 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    For $150, we will make you an incredible sterling silver filigree ring, model #R120, set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is a classic Art Deco design and was made using one of our antique hand engraved steel hubs. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $175 or more About $175

    For $175, we will make you a fabulously engraved die rolled bracelet in solid sterling silver, model #B025.C. The antique, hand engraved roll we use to make this bracelet imparts a stunning design of a running scroll with flowers over the entire bracelet. Because this bracelet is die rolled, the metal is left with a spring hardness and will last for generations with normal wear. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    6 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $225 or more About $225

    For $225, we will make you a fabulously engraved die-rolled ring in solid sterling silver, model #BR026 set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond, in your finger size. The antique, hand-engraved roll we use to make this ring imparts a stunning design of a framed flower over an engraved field. Because this ring is die rolled, the metal is left with a spring hardness and will last for generations with normal wear. The first 25 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    For $400, we will make you a stunning cigar band ring, model #CB022, in your choice of either 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold. This ring is made using one of our antique, hand-engraved steel hubs that was originally intended to be a bracelet link. We curved it to fit your finger and added a shank to make this lovely ring. The design features a classic scroll motif and will be made to your finger size. The first 100 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    For $500 we will make you a gorgeous filigree ring, model #R121, in your choice of either 14k white, yellow, rose, or green gold set with the birthstone of your choice, including a diamond. This ring is a classic Art Deco design and was made using one of our antique hand-engraved steel hubs. The first 50 of these will be shipped in time for Christmas and packaged in a gift box made from recycled paper, ready for gift-wrapping.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    For $1,000, you get to come to Hugo Kohl's workshop and work with a master craftsman as he guides you through the process of fabricating your own sterling silver die-rolled bracelet and, yes, you get to set the diamonds yourself. After completing the bracelet, we celebrate with a nice bottle of Prosecco (of course, only if you're of age). This is a full hands-on experience. You'll make and set stones in several copper practice bracelets before you finally move to a sheet of silver. You will be able to set up the equipment, cut your ribbon of metal in an antique slitter, run it through a rolling mill under a hand-engraved steel roll, stamp it with hallmarks, trim the stamping to size, form it into a bracelet shape to fit your wrist (or the wrist of your loved one). You will also select and set three diamonds, and finally, polish your masterpiece. This is a visceral, hands-on experience in a fully outfitted and serious workshop. While in the workshop, you will be encouraged to immerse yourself in the culture of making. You will be allowed to enter our hub vault, browse our die sets, and put your hands on some of the coolest tools and machines ever assembled in one place. While at the workshop, you will be invited to autograph our "Wall of Makers," where your name will be included with others who are part of the maker movement. This experience will be documented by a professional photographer.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    This is the big kahuna! For $5,000, you get to come to Hugo's workshop and work with a master craftsman as he guides you through the process of fabricating your own 14k gold* die-rolled bracelet and, yes, you get to set the stones yourself. You'll make and set stones in several copper practice bracelets before you finally move to a sheet of gold. You will be able to set up the equipment, cut your ribbon of metal in an antique slitter, run it through a rolling mill under a hand-engraved steel roll, stamp it with hallmarks, trim the stamping to size, form it into a bracelet shape to fit your wrist (or the wrist of your loved one), select and set three diamonds, and finally, polish your masterpiece. After completing the bracelet, we'll celebrate with a nice bottle of Prosecco (of course, only if you're of age). This is a visceral, hands-on experience in a fully outfitted and serious workshop. While in the workshop, you will be encouraged to immerse yourself in the culture of making. You will be allowed to enter our hub vault, browse our die sets, and put your hands on some of the coolest tools and machines ever assembled in one place. While at the workshop, you will be invited to autograph our "Wall of Makers," where your name will be included with others who are part of the maker movement. This experience will be documented by a professional photographer.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (30 days)