On collaboration

One of the most rewarding things about being a custom jeweler and metalsmith is the translation of someone’s desires and personal story into a piece of jewelry. This process requires lots of listening, lots of brainstorming, and sometimes a little bench miracle.

My custom clients are terrific. I consider them clients as well as collaborators with me in the process. Many of them have become good friends, and I treasure them and their appreciation of my work. I am the one in the equation with the technical skill and mastery of the medium, and they are the ones with the association – the story.

That said, my favorites (and, Yes, there are favorites) are the children. It has been a tremendous pleasure to collaborate with very young clients – elementary schoolers – to create pieces for their mom, for instance. One pair of sisters in particular are quite memorable. Their dad brought them to my studio individually. We talked and sketched together, and they decided how they would like their birthstones set for their mom’s Christmas gift. One chose sleek, simple earrings. The other drew a daisy, which I re-created in metal, and her birthstone became the center for this pendant.

What an honor for me to work for them.


~ by gingermeekallen on August 27, 2008.

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