four leaf clover pendant

lucky four leaf clovers

whimsical is not a word I would use to describe my jewellery, however when I forged a little four leaf clover for my cousin this christmas, I found myself feeling so … happy … it would seem that forging a good luck trinket was just what I needed to bring a smile to my face.

just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, I have 21 four leaf clovers to share with all of you who wish to spread a wee bit of good fortune this March, with free shipping this week to boot, so click here to get yours! (they are also the first trinket now available in my being-remodeled online shop– which is a story for another day. the peace signs, zodiac pendants and everything else will be up again soon)

sterling silver four-leaf clover pendantsunlike the rest of my trinket line, these charms are forged solid (rather than the outline). starting with an ingot of silver, I hammered the metal flat, cut out the rough shape of the lucky clover and then began filing until my four leaves had that happy heart shape.

did you know that according to legend, each leaf of the clover represents something?

the first is for faith, the second is for hope, the third is for love, and the fourth is for luck.

i love that :)

I am half irish, (with the temperament to prove it), and I remember my grandfather saying, “you know, the irish are historically an unlucky folk, but the grand thing about them is that they just don’t know it… they believe they’re lucky, and therefore, they go about life with a smile on their face.”

four leaf cloversto me that pretty much sums it up. luck isn’t something you have or you don’t have. luck is something you believe you have …

so if you believe yourself to be lucky, then just maybe you’ll be able to see the good fortune in the coming of each and every day.

so this st. paddy’s day, may you find yourself with a wee bit ‘o faith, hope, love and luck… and if nothing else, a tasty pint ‘o guinness in your hand!

Robin Quivers wearing my wishbone necklace on the Howard Stern show

howard stern and robin quivers’ wishbone

small sterling silver wishbone on black rawhideHoward Stern’s wife Beth is a longtime friend of mine, one of my dearest in fact, and this christmas, Beth purchased a number of my wishbone pendants to give as gifts.

 

Howard jumped on this as well and gave Robin Quivers one of my favorite yellow gold wishbones (with a lovely diamond inset).

Robin Quivers wearing my wishbone necklace on the Howard Stern showwell little did I realize how this would change my business in such a big huge way!

the wishbone pendants have already been experiencing a massive resurgence in popularity as, thanks to the urging of many a new customer, I began making a smaller version of the cornish game hen wishbone pendant that I have been casting for years.

this smaller version has given way to wishbone earrings and now has joined the ranks of my “trinket” line of hand hammered pendants… peace signs, om symbols and my latest line of hand hammered zodiac symbols.

and now for the really something fabulous that is about to happen~

this tuesday morning, march 27th, NBC’s Today Show is going to feature my trinket line on Jill Martin’s segment Steal and Deals.  Jill has about 5 specialty items for sale at a discount of anywhere from 50-90% off retail price.  the deals are available for 24 hours only and my trinket line of zodiac symbols, peace signs, wishbones and om symbols will be sold for an insane discount off my retail price.

i personally make each of these trinkets (here in the usa, not in china!!!) and given the recent surge in silver pricing, this is going to be an amazing deal!!!  I am offering the pendants on one of three chain options (silver chain, natural rawhide chain or black rawhide) and they make fabulous gifts.

check it out at TODAY SHOW and from there you will see the STEALS and DEALS link to my site.

after all, howard and beth have fantastic taste :)

the newest trinkets have been forged!!!

oh i am thrilled to finally be able to say that i have forged the first seven of my newest trinkets, the zodiac pendants!

in the spirit, size and style of my peace sign jewellery and Ohm charms, the hand forged zodiac signs join my ever growing collection of symbolic
pendants.

here they are, photographed with my favorite ball peen hammer, the rat tail rasp (round file) that i have become so enamored with while making these zodiac charms, and my anvil (which i am too embarrassed to show to my metalsmith friends… it so needs to be dressed properly!!!)

having always been fascinated with symbols, especially alchemical symbols, the zodiac charms seemed a perfect progression from the peace signs, Ohm pendants and wishbones.

the peace sign originated as the symbol for nuclear disarmament and the Ohm is the symbol of a sacred invocation to be intoned at the beginning and end of any mantra. the wishbone, well we all need to make a wish every once in awhile.

while the origins of the astrological symbols themselves seem to be lost in history, the symbols remain elemental expressions of the sun sign under which we are born. the starting point of each of our unique blueprints.

additionally, for us alchemical freaks, the twelve core alchemical processes are ruled by the twelve signs of the zodiac. (i find all this fascinating and yes, people think i am weird :)

the pendants however, are classic. not corny or literal, the twelve signs of the zodiac are universal and expressive. I am really digging the pendants on a piece of natural rawhide (with solid gold or silver lobster clasp).

on my website, however, the pendants are featured on the traditional rolo chains that so many of you have with your peace signs.

email me if the rawhide chain intrigues, i am always happy to cater to customization!

by the way, the rawhide looks great with a tan :)

starting with leo, the zodiac signs now have their own pages on the website. the remaining five zodiac signs are on my bench awaiting my hammer. so far my sign, aquarius, has been the most challenging to forge (still haven’t perfected the little bugger) and virgo, the sign of both my babies, has been the most fun.

and in closing, may i say a huge happy birthday to my many leonine girlfriends and my mom! leo is the polar opposite sign to aquarius and i do seem to attract the leonine women. the first leo pendant i forged in 18k yellow gold, in honor of all of you gorgeous lions!

be so well and radiant

heather

18k palladium white gold diamond set

18k white gold set, brushed finish

the color achieved by alloying 18k white gold with palladium is so hard to describe, but this photo really seems to capture the color and depth of the metal.
this necklace, ring and bangle bracelet are an early set that i made when i was just learning to forge and shape new alloys.
nowadays, i like to play "metalsmithing snob" and refuse to work in any other white gold alloy.
regular 18k white gold uses nickel as a bleaching agent, as gold is really yellow and needs a whitener. many people are seriously allergic to nickel. it is curious to note that EU has laws that govern the use of nickel in jewellery sold in Europe.
regular white gold is a pain in the ass to forge. it fire cracks when you heat it, quench cracks when you cool and stress cracks when you hammer it.
not fun.
palladium however, is lovely and malleable, white and tarnish resistant. it does work harden faster, but since it is not inclined to fire, quench or stress crack, i consider this an advantage.
i hammer my metal to be solid and dense, no stress fractures please.
finally, this alloy needs no pesty rhodium plating. what you see is what you get, lovely deep white gold color. and no nickel rash.

oh and yes, this necklace, bangle and ring went to one very lucky girl.

difference between cast and hand forged/handmade jewelry

so what exactly is the difference between a piece of jewellery that has been cast versus a piece that has been hand forged? admittedly, i don’t hear this question as often as i would imagine, but when i do, i really love to answer. so since it was just asked… i am going to take the opportunity to answer!

cast items are more porous and less durable. hand forged items are just that, forged by hand with a hammer and (in my case) over an anvil. the metal is condensed due to the hammering, therefore the end result is a heavier piece, denser and more durable.

i design my bangles to fit as snuggly as possible, to reduce the “banging” effect that results from a bangle that is a bit too large. this way you can wear your bangle 24/7, never having to take it off. (just like the beautiful jade bangles worn in many asian cultures).

and if your bracelet is hand forged it will age so well, literally becoming shinier, harder and more gorgeous as time goes by! bangles make great gifts too and are easy to size. in fact, i have just added the option to order bangles in small/medium or medium/large, so you never have to worry if it will fit again.

the holidays are upon us people, do not delay!

how the universe sent love…

this message awaited me on this cold (49 degrees!), dark, rainy monday morning and it brought such a smile and warmth to my day.

doug placed an order with the special pricing i offered my newsletter subscribers last week and for some technical reason, his order did not reflect the 21% discount. naturally i had sent him an email over the weekend, remedying the situation.

this morning, he wrote back!

“Thank you so much, Heather.

This is more than generous…. It is so refreshing to deal with someone personally… your quick response was gratifying and much appreciated.

The piece was well worth full price and I was certainly not going to cancel the order… your artistry obviously extends beyond design and includes just plain sincere caring for customers (and I would guess, people in general)…

Thanks… I look forward to my next order…”

yes, i am patting myself on the back, but it was an intense weekend and to be honest, i am not quite ready for it to be so cold, so a pat on the back feels pretty cozy right about now.

stay warm (and to all my californians, i don’t wanna hear it)

xo,
heather

large sterling silver peace sign

wish season, wishbone special

the other night i did something illicit, and so delicious…
 
at the stroke of midnight with my trusty garden clippers in hand, i snuck out to the magnolia tree in the island on our street and clipped lovely large branches for a huge vase in our foyer.
 

and i thought, hooray for spring.
 
at the expense of sounding dramatic, i am overflowing with gratitude. it’s warm again (somedays 84 degrees some 44 degrees…) and everything is in bloom, and our garden is begging for the rototiller!
hunter played outside all morning with friends and after fabulous dinner with more friends is finally sleeping like, well, a baby :)
 
and you guys, who read my musings, have been so fantastic–
 
with my last post, i asked and you answered, and i’m really genuinely grateful!
 
it seems that the overwhelming response to the question, “what piece of handmade jewellery would you like to see a special on this spring?” is, wishbone pendants!
 
sounds good to me. i love these little guys.
 


14 karat yellow gold wishbone pendant with diamond

i’ve been making these wishbone necklaces since the day in 1998 that my dear friend robert sent me the wishbone of a cornish game hen and asked me to cast him one in sterling silver. since then i have made so many different versions, including platinum and gold, some with flush set diamonds.
 
it makes sense– with mother’s day just around the corner (and the mother’s day gift decision), what mom doesn’t have wishes to make?
 
i was just reminded that graduations abound this time of year, too, so i’m sure many of you have multiple good reasons for your choice :).
 

and of course wedding time is here for many (at least i seem to be awash in wedding rings) and i’ve always thought wishbones make great bridesmaids gifts. weddings are all about good wishes.
 
so i would really like to express my gratitude for you guys, for spring, and for the magnolias with a special offer for all my facebook fans, my twitter peeps, and all of you really awesome people who have actually asked to receive my newsletter (click here to be one of these fab people).
 
so for all of you:
 
30% off all wishbones until may day!
 
Tomorrow, John will be sending all of you (on Facebook, Twitter and my newsletter list, anyway) a special link to my wishbone pendants (in my new online shop!) and a code for the discount. (The discount code will be good until midnight next Monday, May 2 for all you procrastinators.)
 
the heady fragrance of magnolia was intoxicating…i think i am to rendezvous with the lilacs tonight.
 
be so well and bring in the spring!
 
heather

me and *%#$&@ technology…

oy. me and this computer.
seems my website’s shopping cart is not properly working through microsoft explorer, or some such b.s.
that’s computer speak for “big snafu” you know…

so a BIG APOLOGY to everyone who has encountered problems.
personally, i have little patience for difficult websites and when buying online, i want it to be easy.
a huge thank you to all those who have persevered and called me on the phone! i so love that.

and for now, i am disabling (read, john is disabling) the shopping cart.
if you fancy a lovely little hand forged bauble,
peace sign, wishbone, rune, OM or astrological pendant…call me.
phone is always better in my opinion
xx
heather