In December I got a phone call from a friend, Mitch asking me if I could make an engagement ring. He wanted to propose to his lovely girlfriend Amanda on their 3 year anniversary.......which was two weeks away!
Mitch and Amanda are two very unique people, so I had a feeling it wasn't going to be a traditional solitaire diamond ring - which is great, because I'm not really a traditional gal myself. I met with Mitch and he had some big ideas - he wanted a ring that was scroll like in design and he wanted a black diamond. His scroll like design was inspired by a key........Mitch's Dad had given him three beautiful vintage keys from the 1920's. Mitch's Dad had passed away 3 years ago, so these keys were very sentimental to him. For Mitch and Amanda's last anniversary he had given Amanda one of the keys. I swooned a little after hearing the story behind it and I knew that I wanted to make the ring from the key. I suggested that we make a rubber mold of the key and cast the key into metal and I would cut it apart, play with it and make it into a one of a kind engagement ring.....lofty goals for a two week timeline......but life is all about love and taking risks so I was up for the challenge.
Being a metalsmith is an interesting art.....I have now worked with metal for over 5 years.....Everything should work out just perfectly all the time........but not so much......Each new one of a kind project brings with it new challenges. I couldn't figure out some important things about this ring....It was cast from a key......it had beautiful swirls, lovely curves, soft round edges.....this made it tricky to figure out how to construct a ring shank that worked with it. I tried a number of methods.....things fell apart in the ninth hour....I called my friend and fellow jeweller Simone....she came and looked at my challenge. She said some calm encouraging words and convinced me to go home and come back to it in the morning with fresh eyes, which I did.
The next day in the very early hours of the morning with my fresh eyes and fresh cup of coffee I saw things differently. Things went smoothly, everything started to work and flow and fit together. I made the shank a double shank and it still looked feminine and soft. The black diamond fit the bezel perfectly.....Everything turned out and the ring looked beautiful, unique, vintage, truly one of a kind.
Making this engagement ring was an incredible project. Just like in a marriage I hit some challenging moments, but I didn't give up because being involved in that kind of love is soul stirring.
Pulled from the blog of my always favourite inspiring writer Danielle Laporte, some words on Marriage.....
Marriage is not a love affair,
it's an ordeal.
It is a religious exercise, a sacrament,
the grace of participating in another life.
If you go into marriage with a program,
you will find that it won't work.
is leading innovative lives together,
being open, non-programmed.
It's a free fall: how you handle each new thing as it comes along.
As a drop of oil on the sea,
you must float,
using intellect and compassion
to ride the waves.
- Joseph Campbell
***A little side note.....Mitch is an amazing artist and tattoo artist.....I may even have some recent personal experience with how amazing his skills are.....(future blog post) - you can check out his blog here www.tattoosbymitch.blogspot.com