Monday, June 14, 2010

I Am Totally Stealing That Idea

A friend came to my recent Home Show, and I commented on how nice she looked. She had a fabulous, summery white shirt accented with a wonderful necklace. As I was telling her how much I liked the necklace, I paused and said, "Wait a minute.....did I make that?" As it turned out, I had sort of made it.

A few years ago, I made a collection of key rings using silverware that I gathered at thrift stores and flea markets. These key rings were an opportunity to use beads that I didn't really want to for my jewelry.

I have lots of forks, spoons and knives in my cache of supplies. Like old photos, I am drawn to old pieces of silverware. I like the interesting patterns, the patinas and the scratches or worn tines that indicate years of use. My friend had purchased one of the keyrings last year, decided she didn't really need the keyring, removed the keyring-thing and inserted a long chain. The new necklace, previously known as a keyring, looked great!

Well...I went through my bins of forks and spoons and selected some with necklace-worthy patterns. The utility end was removed with my jeweler's saw, and the cut was filed and sanded smooth. A hole was drilled into the top for wire wrapping. I chose crystal beads that were reclaimed from an old chandelier.

In another effort to make these necklaces more special than my earlier keyrings, I made bead caps from brass that I had run through my rolling mill with some lace. Discs were cut from the milled metal, drilled at the center point and then domed to match the curve of the bead.

My new silverware pendants hang from long chains- I cut the chain at around 30". Some of the pendants have dangles at the top.

I am always reading magazines and books to see what other people in the jewelry world are making, but I make a determined effort to develop and maintain a design 'voice' that is distinctly mine.
What a unique opportunity to steal an idea from myself, with a bit of help from a friend!!


  1. Wonderful creations, I love it!
    You had a great idea.

  2. I have been following you via RSS feeds and I am incredibly impressed by your curious nature. While some jewelry designers practically beg to be imitated, you inspire me to think about my own life and how everyday things can be the catalyst for creativity. Thanks for an inspiring blog!

  3. Thanks for the comments. I approach jewelry design as I do garden design. Each project is unique and the design is in response to the particular features- the site characteristics and client wishes with my landscape projects; the materials at hand with my jewelry projects. I recognize the benefit of having an identifiable 'look' especially when trying to cultivate a clientele following, but using a variety of recycled materials forces me to approach my jewelry projects from different points of view which helps to keep things fresh and interesting for me.