Pottery, firewood and wedding rings…

I grew up unaware that rings signified marriage, so it’s kind of ironic that I became a jeweller really.

For the entirety of my childhood I can’t recall either of my parents wearing wedding rings… in recent years I’ve discovered why.


My parents did exchange wedding rings along with their vows on their wedding day. A day of dress ups, bush bands and good old daggy festivities back in the early 80’s in a tiny country town called Bethanga. So whilst their marriage continued on, their wedding rings, sadly, did not.

hipster-wedding
My parents on their wedding day. Check out dad’s hipster beard and corduroy vest! Just brilliant.

My mum’s ring met with adventure when she did a pottery class. She took her ring off so that it didn’t interfere with the process of working with the clay and placed it on the bench near her things. That was the last time she saw it. We assume that along came someone else with their fresh clump of clay and plonked it down on top of mum’s ring, so now that ring is most likely housed inside the walls of a hideous 90’s style gaudy vase or mug that would have by now surely been thrown in the trash…

My dad’s ring met with a very different fate. His ring travelled with us, happily riding along on dad’s finger as he steered the ute on our way to collect firewood one weekend. There was no problem while he cut up the fallen branches with the chainsaw and we played with our dog, Bob. The problem came when loading the firewood into the ute. The final log dad threw onto the stack bounced back and straight onto his left hand, squashing his wedding ring into an oval shape. Luckily he knew to get the ring off quickly before the swelling got too bad, but he never did put it back on. Well not for about 20 years until I became a jeweller and reshaped it for him… and even then it was reserved only for special occasions.


So I was very surprised when my parents requested that I make them each a ring to celebrate their wedding anniversary.

The first thing I said was “but you don’t wear rings!” 

My parents have always had the attitude that it’s never too late to try something new. From studying for a new career at the age of 40 to relocating over 990km’s for a bit of a lifestyle change, they’ve been an inspiration to me and many other people to be courageous. So they embarked on a new adventure of being a ring wearing husband and wife and together we custom designed their unique new rings.

Anniversary ring 1 anniversary ring 3

anniversary ring 4 anniversary ring 2

They had recently seen my “Show your stipes” rings in an exhibition at Arbor and loved the wood grain effect of the mokume gane, a traditional Japanese metal patterning technique developed centuries ago.

Anniversary ring 6
These rings were designed to explore the juxtaposition of contrasting textured surfaces, enticing a closer investigation of how the item feels and the way that it catches the light from different angles. There is a playful nature within the spinning rings, further enhancing the tactile nature of jewellery and the connection that the wearer feels with their adornment. The use of Mokume Gane has also allowed me to further enhance the concept of a true ‘one-off’ piece of jewellery, knowing that the pattern within the mokume gane can never be identically replicated, like a fingerprint, zebra stripes or the wood grain after which its name derives from.
Dads-anniversary-wedding-ring
For my Dad. 9 Carat Rose gold inner band with a spinning outer band consisting of 9 carat rose gold, sterling silver, shibuichi and copper.
Anniversary ring 7
For my Mum. Sterling silver inner band with copper and sterling silver spinner band.

 

glenn-heather-and-i-at-the-football-2
Me and my folks.

 

So another year has gone by and I just want to wish my parents another very happy anniversary!!

Glenn & Heather, I’m so glad you met, married and became my parents. I wish you the best of luck on your latest adventure in Tasmania, I know you’ll be living life to it’s fullest over there. I love you both very much and I don’t know what I would do without you.

Keep on being awesome!!

xxx

Anniversary ring 5

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