Friday, May 12, 2017


Customer's old ring.
After a consult with details about ring size and width I made some sketches for the customer to choose a design from. After she decided on the design I got to work carving. I double checked my hand carved wax up next to my sketch, as you can see just above. Afterwards I casted the band and setting seperately using old gold jewellery (additional pieces along with the old ring) melted along with new gold. When incorporating old jewellery to create a new piece there are a lot of factors to consider - in general old rings tend to work well because they do not have solder joints that could degrade the karat of the gold when remelted. Even so, to ensure that the gold has the best working properties I add 50% new gold.    

Here is the new ring!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Custom Wolf Pin

Here's where it all begins! I google searched these images, the customer was looking for a wolf that had an expression that was somewhere between ferocious and placid. I blocked out the main shape first.

I love adding detail using relief wax. It helps to have the different colour wax and still achieves crisp detailing.

To the left, to the left.

It's important to know your angles... facing left after casting in sterling silver.
Here is the finished piece, looking pretty badass.

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Trying out gradient as a background, yay? or nay?

One more for the road.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Sunflower Engagement Ring

Mapping out the dimensions/shapes with my sketches as a guide. I made my sketches based on meetings with the customers, discussing all the details and selecting the perfect diamond for the center with them.

Basic shape and dimensions are done on the top, at this point I scheduled an appointment so the customer could try it on to check sizing and to okay the dimensions.

After all the details were added I couldn't resist trying the wax on one last time before casting it in 14 karat nickel white gold.

Just after casting and trimming the sprues (the lumpy parts). I love figuring out the best areas to attach sprues so the metal flows nicely into the piece when I am casting. 

From the back!

After all the filing, emerying, and perfecting each nook and cranny I polished it up and set the diamonds in place. A beautiful .9ct Cognac diamond in the center with 24 accent diamonds around the perimeter and the shoulders of the ring, take a look: 

I am quite happy with my photos, I feel like I am getting a handle on editing them, and I am reminded yet again that practice makes perfect (not there yet, but getting better!)

If only photos could truly capture the brilliance of a diamond... I guess I should be taking video clips, doh! another skill to try out.

I know that I am obsessed and love seeing parts of the process - my phone is filled with either process pics of jewellery and (full disclosure) my cat. Is there any part of the process you would like to get a window into? Let me know!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Mood Boards

I have been sitting with ideas and letting them percolate lately. A large part of my creative process doesn't always appear the most creative - to an outsider it's me sitting quietly staring out into space. This morning I sipped my coffee and got to thinking about this year's entry into Jewel Envy's themed competition Winter Wedding. Things are starting to form in my mind...

I wanted to repost the entries I made for last year's competition (Wedding Earrings). I started with my mood boards collecting colours and style inspirations and centered my designs around them. I always get excited to do this type of work because it gets me to step outside of the regular flow of my creative process and center around a specific piece. Each set of earrings is specific to it's mood board.

Lace and Pearls - made with sterling silver and pearls.

Wing Earrings - Sterling and fine silver, enamel, glass.

Chandelier Earrings - sterling silver and garnet beads.

Design inspiration can come from anywhere, and even if you have the slightest inkling of an idea for a custom creation I love to take on new ideas and designs for specific events!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Ring Redesign

Here's the ring pre-redesign. I anxiously cut off the gem/setting gallery before remembering to snap a picture - so it was temporarily held back in place by some red wax. The band is 14kt yellow gold and the setting gallery is 14kt white gold. The customer wanted the ring to be all 14 kt white gold, hence my rush to cut off the yellow gold when I started creating!

I decided to maintain the original setting. I played around with a few wax carvings and wanted to create a more substantial looking band while also modernizing it a bit. It was helpful to have the setting gallery handy to perch in place to check on my progress.

Here it is! Between this set of photos and the last a lot happened... The most obvious being that I cast the piece in 14kt white gold. I had to file and perfect the fit of setting gallery onto the band. I also did a solder check on the old section to make sure it did not have solder anywhere - I didn't want any surprises when attaching it to the band. The great thing about diamonds is that they can withstand being heated by a torch. Once all that was out of the way I carefully held it in position and soldered it onto the new band. In the metal you can more clearly see the two hearts I carved into the band. 

Here's another snap! Here is the ring in what looks like a stock photo (minus my dirty fingernails, of course).

Saturday, July 11, 2015

If you want these lumps, you gotta put a ring on it.

It was... interesting working with Lumpy Space Princess (LSP) for her one of a kind custom ring! Below are the sketches I did for our consultation. 

I immediately knew I wanted to steer her towards a design with a custom carved "lumpy" gem. This design was nixed because it was too solid and she didn't quite like the bumpy lines leading to the claws, "MORE lumps, not bumps." - LSP

For this design, I went with a more open design with 3 bands of wire, "MORE LUMPING LUMPS!"  - LSP

This is the one! Just enough lumps, with some sparkle.

For the ring we'll be using custom carved pink chalcedony and round brilliant cut orange sapphires

Final rendering of the choosen ring. "Mah ring!!" - LSP