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Rope Chains

October 21, 2010

I like these chains. They, like all my other work, are made completely from scratch. There is nothing else like them in the jewellery world.

It is a shame, but hand-making chain is a dying art. Most chain that can be purchased from a jeweller these days is machine made. It is cheap to buy and can be sold on to a customer relatively cheaply because there is no labour cost in making the chain. It doesn’t last long however. Machine made chain wears quickly, especially thin or hollow-link pieces, and you can end up paying more by constantly repairing your chain than you did buying it. Handmade chain is very different. It is made with solid links, is heavier, and far sturdier; and it’s true that it costs a lot more to buy, but it will last you the rest of your life. And these days, everyone wants to spend their money more wisely…

 

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Xmas gifts…already?

October 2, 2010

I know it’s pretty early to be thinking about Christmas presents, but if you’re planning on having a special piece of jewellery made then the earlier you get on to it the better.

The turn around time for any piece of handmade jewellery varies. Three or four weeks is normal if you’re getting something handmade with stones in it. The metal and the stones have to be sourced, then the piece of jewellery is manufactured from those raw materials, and finally the stones are set by a professional gem setter.

If you want something truly fantastic then it may take up to six weeks to complete. Especially if a complex design or difficult to source stones are part of your piece.

If you have a design for a piece of jewellery but don’t know whether it will work, have drawn something you’re too embarrassed to show anyone because it’s so bad, or simply can’t describe the piece of jewellery you have in your head, then come in and talk to me and I’ll help you fine tune your design into something workable that I can make for you.

So start thinking about your loved ones and what you’d like to get them this year for Christmas… and think “Handmade jewellery”. It is always the best kind of gift because you’re giving something you’ve created yourself.

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Roman Style Gold Ring

August 24, 2010

Here’s something a bit different.

This ring I’ve made in 9ct yellow gold with 9ct white gold shoulders. I’ve kept the design rather simple, using strong, simple curves to enclose all of the square shaped stones. I’ve called it a Roman Style Ring because the shapes resemble the curved contours of Roman style furniture.

The green stone is a baguette-cut Tourmaline with a unique colour: a dark oily green at one end fading to a lighter green at the other. Four small princess-cut diamonds are set into the shoulders.

This ring could easily be made in other metals too. A combination of platinum and 18ct yellow gold would work very well. The center stone could be replaced with almost any stone cut similarly, including a diamond, and look equally fantastic.

All of the jewellery I make can be altered to suit an individual’s taste and budget. My sole aim is to give the customer what they want, not what I think they should have, so I’m always open to suggestions…

Chris

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NZ Coin Medallion

August 14, 2010

Coins make fantastic jewellery. Especially if the coin is valuable or has some special significance to the wearer. A simple surround of gold or silver can be wrapped around the coin and then fashioned into a pendant, a ring, a brooch, or even earrings or cuff-links if there are more than one. With imagination almost anything can be fashioned using a coin.

Here I’ve made a customer’s NZ half crown into a medallion that she can clip or string onto her handmade chain. The coin was minted in 1949 which is the year of the her birth. She was given the coin as a child and had kept it safe until she saw the 1c coin medal I’d made as a gift for a friend and decided it was time to bring her special coin out and wear it as a medallion.

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Engraved Wedding Bands

August 6, 2010

Often couples like their wedding rings to be plain gold bands; but if you want something a little more fancy without going overboard then you may consider having a wedding band engraved.

I made a palladium wedding band for a customer recently that had a beautiful hand engraved pattern around it. She wanted something that resembled both waves and a koru pattern. I drew a couple of designs for her based on her description.

She loved both but eventually went for the first design.

As you can see, the hand engraving takes a simple wedding band and gives it personality and individuality.

Matching wedding bands are also nice to engrave. Coming up with a pattern that has meaning for the two of you and engraving it on both of your wedding bands gives them special significance.

Here are some 18ct white gold wedding bands I made for a couple that have matching hand engraving. The surface is matted to make the engraving stand out.

The pattern symbolizes the journey they as a couple will take through life: two woven trails that connect and separate and carry on together, forever. Lovely.

Chris

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Lapis Lazuli jewellery

July 30, 2010

My latest creation is a set of Lapis Lazuli Jewellery.

A customer came to me with a big chunk of Lapis Lazuli she wanted to wear as a pendant but thought  it was too thick to be worn comfortably. We discussed options and decided to slice the piece in half so the chunk was much slimmer, then make some other pieces of jewellery out of the remaining slice for her daughters.

The pendant slice was kept in its original form while the other slice was broken up into smaller pieces and formed into 4 round cabochons of different thicknesses.

I made a sterling silver back for the pendant with claws that gripped the lapis piece from the front. The pendant is designed so that all you can see from the front is 4 small squared-off claws. It can be worn two different ways. The shackle hook can be attached to the back of the pendant at two different points so that it will hang either longways or sideways.

With the four cabochon stones I made a set of sterling silver earrings and two silver rings.

I loved making all the pieces jewellery. I think they’re extra special too because the whole set is made from a single piece of Lapis Lazuli that was passed down from the customer’s mother to her. The jewellery that’s been made from it can now be shared and loved by the next generation of mother and daughters…

Chris

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New Hours

July 22, 2010

I’ll be opening the shop five days a week from now on.

I’ll be open until 6pm each day from Tuesday through to Saturday. On Tuesday and Wednesday I’ll open the shop at noon and on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday I’ll be opening, as per usual, at 10am.

If you have any jewellery repairs, remakes or queries then come in and see me and I’ll be sure to help you out.

As always I can make any piece of jewellery you desire. Don’t be afraid to come in and discuss wedding bands, engagement rings, birthday and anniversary gifts, or any other jewellery ideas with me. I’m happy to give advice and quote for work with no obligation to buy.

Check out all of the work I’ve done since opening a year ago. I’m always adding to it too so keep it bookmarked if you like what I do.

Hours again:

Tuesday and Wednesday = 12noon-6pm. Thursday, Friday and Saturday = 10am-6pm.

Thanks, Chris.

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