Creating an heirloom piece of jewellery
Creating an heirloom piece of jewellery often provides
extra challenges to the designing process. As an example,
a piece we recently created was designed around
the gemstones provided by our client. This collection
of Australian gemstones was of differing shapes, sizes
‘…it is gratifying to be able to design these stories into pieces that,
when made, can stimulate imaginations and memories.’
The natural Australian gemstones were solid Lightning Ridge
black opal, green, yellow and Inverell blue sapphires, along
with Argyle pink and yellow diamonds. All are found in
dry riverbeds and were mounted in white gold ‘rubbed in’
style settings. The outside yellow gold edges of the bracelet
represent the meandering rivers set around the ‘Red Centre’,
which is finished to represent the textured surface of the
unique red-coloured rock walls often found alongside our
waterholes and rivers. The clasp has been designed to also
articulate and move and represents a gold nugget.
The individual ‘articulated’ sections of the bracelet are all
different shapes and sizes, as are all the gemstones. After all,
no two rivers, territories or states, or even mobs or clans in
this big, wide, wonderful country of ours are identical.
This piece was designed and constructed using coloured golds
around existing gemstones. However there is another piece
being developed at the moment that is a remake using existing
components. It has been redesigned based on a recurring
theme within the existing pieces. Sections – which to date
have been hidden away at the back of the piece – are too
interesting to ignore and will be included in the new piece.
Most heirloom jewellery has a story to tell and it is gratifying
to be able to design these stories into pieces that, when
made, can stimulate imaginations and memories.
Greg’s makers mark (left) can be found in all jewellery he has designed and made.