I really love working with customers to create their perfect pieces of jewellery, and I particularly enjoy being part of making something that becomes extremely sentimental to its owner. One of my favourite things about silver is that it is durable, so a well made piece of jewellery should last for generations. I love the idea of making something that might get handed down through the family or found by archaeologists in thousands of years!
This blog is about a particularly lovely duo of commissions that I worked on recently, two silver pendants with similar themes that the customers gifted to each other. I guess if they were mass produced in a big shop they would be called ‘his & hers’ pendants, but I won't be calling them that here.
The Silver Moon Pendant (for her)
This is the piece I made first, with the inspiration being a full moon with waves at the lower part of the pendant. I always start the commission process by talking to the customer about the various things that they would like to incorporate and what is possible with the design, and (importantly) the budget, so that I can design something that fits what they want perfectly and comes in at a price that they are happy with.
After the design has been agreed the workshop fun can begin!
I started with working out how best to create the texture of the full moon: after all, this would be what turns the pendant from a silver disc into an unmistakable moon. Surprisingly I found that what worked best was an old and very, very rusty hammer head!
Then my favourite part - some very fiddly piercing saw work to cut out the layers of wave patterns. These were then soldered to the full moon and the whole thing slightly domed to give the piece a lovely 3D effect.
The Silver Moon & Waves Pendant (for him)
This pendant was commissioned a few months after the original one as a return gift. It’s always lovely to have returning customers and it proves that they trust me with their ideas!
This piece was quite easy to design, it was just a case of taking the same inspiration but making it into a more masculine style pendant. Then I had already done a lot of the work before - I knew exactly how to texture the moon and cut out the waves and build the silver up in layers to create a similar effect.
Both these pieces were polished and then oxidised (patinating the silver to turn it black) at the end, which meant that the texture could be seen in more detail.
“The necklace is just so fabulous. It looks stunning when worn. You’ve really captured the ideas that we had so very well. Better than we could have imagined. Please know that what you have created is something quite incredibly special for two people.”
Receiving feedback like this makes me so incredibly happy! It’s possibly one of my favourite things about my job!
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my making process, if you have thought about getting something commissioned, or want to ask me any questions about it I would be happy to talk it through with you.