Francesca Watson is a Texas transplant who originally hails from upstate New York. After stops along the way in Washington DC, Maryland, Virginia, California, Hawaii, and the Philippines, she and her husband Nick, a painter, finally settled for good in the Hill Country outside San Antonio. In 2006, after years working in administrative jobs, she took a bead stringing class with some girlfriends – and the rest, as they say, is history.
Today, Francesca and Nick operate The Makery, a working and teaching studio in the Old Village in Downtown Bulverde, Texas. Francesca is a passionate and curious metalsmith whose work tends to be one-of-a-kind pieces or pieces that are part of limited series that grow out of her technical explorations. Currently, she is particularly drawn to non-traditional enamels, stone-setting, highly textured metals, and keum boo, which is the ancient art of layering 24k gold over other metals.
In addition to creating and teaching at The Makery, Francesca teaches online and nationally at local studios and major venues across the United States including BeadFest Philadelphia, BeadFest Santa Fe, the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee, the Tucson Gem Shows, and the Glass Craft and Bead Expo in Las Vegas. She also hosts an annual metals retreat that features top instructors, over-the-top food and special events, and killer projects designed to stretch student skill sets. Her work has been published online by Interweave and in print by Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist Magazine.
The Watsons live on just over an acre of Texas dirt with a flock of chickens, two dogs, and a variety of wildlife that insists on eating everything. They have one grown daughter who lives and works in nearby San Antonio.