Jay Whaley

Jay Whaley
In 1968 Jay Whaley's mother Lorraine suggested he take an art class as an elective in high school. By 1969, Jay had won recognition in a national jewelry competition for rings he made for his parents. The rest is history.

He went on to study Art and Secondary Education at Arizona State University. After graduation, Jay discovered he excelled in teaching metalsmithing to adults. He taught in Scottsdale, AZ and Maui, HI where he also worked as a jeweler and honed his skills in wax carving and goldsmithing. Jay moved to San Diego in 1980 where he found a job as the Gaslamp Jeweler, in the turn of the century Jewelers Exchange Building in downtown San Diego.

In 1985, Jay was invited to head the Jewelry program at the UCSD Craft Center. He developed a strong following of students over the 24 years he was there. In 2009 an opportunity opened for him to have his own studio space in the trendy Hillcrest section of San Diego. His studio is still there today, hosting over 100 students a week, with long a wait list for classes!

Jay Whaley has 50 years of experience as a master jeweler, goldsmith and wax carver. He is also a tool designer with several patents (and a few more on the way) for innovative tools that have set the industry standard for jewelers, craftsmen and metalsmiths throughout the world.

Along with his wife Holly, Jay offers a unique and memorable opportunity for couples to design and make their own custom wedding bands in private DIY Wedding Ring Workshops at Whaley Studios. The success of these workshops and their popularity has brought clients from Europe, Australia, and all over the United States to this one-day workshop.

A passionate artist, designer, and innovator in the jewelry industry, Jay helps students realize their creative potential at Whaley Studios.
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