custom jewelry

Custom Made Wedding Bands With Ethically Sourced Materials by Patsy Kolesar

In the fall Simone and I started working with Sarah and Alex to design and make their custom wedding bands.  

Sarah and Alex wanted something one of a kind that matched who they were.  They were invested in having their rings made by local artists and having the materials for their rings as ethically sourced as possible.   They are a very active, adventurous, and unique couple and wanted rings that really fit with them.  

Simone and I came up with a few different design ideas for them and the concept they liked the best was "meandering rivers".  Alex and Sarah had told us they had spent some time traveling in Africa and also loved being out doors on our west coast.  We started looking at the landscape both in BC and in Africa and were drawn to these great meandering rivers.  

For their rings we used 100% recycled white gold alloyed with palladium.  We also used 3 natural ethically sourced blue sapphires mined in Australia for Sarah's ring.  

Both Simone and I are very invested in our personal lives and in our businesses in making ethical choices, buying local as much as we can, and supporting other small independent businesses.  Sarah and Alex really held us to this standard when we were making their rings. They asked lots of questions about where exactly materials were coming from and how they were mined.  

Mining industries are historically pretty dirty.  They have caused lots of damage to our environment and to people.  In the past number of years some organizations have formed who are invested in changing this industry and making it more transparent.  Simone and I were so inspired by how invested Sarah and Alex were keeping their wedding bands as ethically made as possible that we decided to donate $100 from our project with them to one of these great organizations.   We chose to donate to Ethical Metalsmiths, who are doing great work.  Here are a few other organizations who are also doing great work:

Alliance for Responsible Mining

Initiative For Responsible Minding Assurance 

Earthworks - No Dirty Gold Campaign 

Here are the end results of Sarah and Alex's custom made wedding bands. 

© Simone Richmond Jewellery & Patsy Kay Kolesar Design 2013

© Simone Richmond Jewellery & Patsy Kay Kolesar Design 2013

100 Year Old Nail by Patsy Kolesar

Sometimes I get to be part of some amazing custom jewelry stories.  Chrissy came to me a couple of weeks ago with a 100 year old nail that she wanted to be able to wear as a pendant.  

The nail came from her families house which her Grandfather built on Prince Edward Island 120 years ago.  Her family still has this house, her nephew is living in it now and a number of years ago they built a small house attached to the main house for her grandmother to live in.  While they were taking out the windows on the side of the house Chrissy was picking up these old nails thinking she would do something with them one day.  

The nails are beautiful, they are handmade.  Chrissy thought it would be cool to wear one as a pendant so that is how it ended up in my hands.  I was very excited to turn this beautiful old nail into something that could be worn on the body...

The handmade nail

The handmade nail

My sketch - of course I added a swirl! 

My sketch - of course I added a swirl! 

The finished piece.  I used sterling silver square wire because I thought it matched the rustic feel of the nail. I wanted to make it beautiful and wearable and also really show off the natural beauty of the nail.  

The finished piece.  I used sterling silver square wire because I thought it matched the rustic feel of the nail. I wanted to make it beautiful and wearable and also really show off the natural beauty of the nail.