Design similarities

by helen hill on March 11, 2009

Christine Roussel posted to Orchid yesterday and mentioned the work of a few lapidary artists, including Dalan Hargrave.  I looked at his work and found a piece which reminded me of a piece I had designed and made in December 2007 – a piece I had to quickly fabricate in a couple of days.  I’ve not shown this piece before as I’m embarrassed about the poor setting – I made it only about six months after I started teaching myself how to make jewellery so my bezels are very sadly lacking.  I have, since then, intended to re-design and make something similar, as I still have suitable stones for such a piece.

I am obsessed with colour and particularly the visible spectrum or rainbow colours.  If I have anything at all which contains colours, I have to arrange them according to the spectrum – OCD or what?!  So to make a piece using all the colours of the rainbow was a must for me.  I also loved the idea of using stones in all sorts of different shapes as well as colours, and decided to make a gently curving piece.  Of course, I joked to my husband that Dalan had copied me! – obviously not the case. 😉  I can, however, assure you that I made my very humble piece approximately fifteen months before ever laying eyes on Dalan’s beautiful platinum brooch, so there was no copying going on there either – it came from my head and my spectrum obsession.

Here is Dalan’s platinum, diamond and multi-gemstone brooch:

Dalan Hargrave's platinum, diamond and multi-gemstone brooch

Dalan Hargrave

Here is my MUCH more humble offering, which I intend to remake shortly:

Orissa garnet, Spessartine garnet, citrine, peridot, blue topaz, iolite and lab tanzanite pendant.

Orissa garnet, Spessartine garnet, citrine, peridot, blue topaz, iolite and lab tanzanite pendant.

Sorry it’s upside down – it was the right way up on my computer and I couldn’t get it to turn around!  And don’t forget it was fifteen months ago so it’s appallingly made.  I’ll have to do a before and after, after I’ve remade it.  My bezels have come on leaps and bounds since then and are now neat enough to sell – the piece in question was gift for a family member.

Please note that I am NOT comparing myself to the likes of Dalan Hargraves, just pointing out a similarity in design ideas.  I hope, one day to be able to make jewellery as fine as that – then I’ll be a very happy bunny! 🙂

helen hill

helen hill

helen hill

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Helen Hill September 16, 2009 at 3:56 am

Thanks Hope. I can’t resist rainbows and always seem to have the need to arrange colours accordingly! Good to see you on Orchid.

Taueret September 16, 2009 at 12:10 am

that’s lovely, there’s something about rainbows!

Johan March 15, 2009 at 10:48 pm

Hi Helen,
I tried emailing you on your website’s email address ‘’ but it came back undelivered. I will paste in the email message I sent, here goes:

Hi Helen,

Thanks for taking the time to write me a comment on my blog on Ganoksin. I do appreciate it.

I read your mail about the stones you purchase on Ebay and the poor quality stones used by some on Etsy, I think I am one of them. I just cannot get a supplier of good quality stones. The stone I used in my ring “Damascus Stainless Steel with birds eye pattern and ruby” is not the best looking stone. I am also very scared to purchase off of Ebay, I have been burnt before.

Would you be prepared to share some of your suppliers of good quality affordable stones.

Thank you.
P.S. You don’t need to make this visible for everyone to read.

Helen Hill March 12, 2009 at 9:54 am

Thank you very much for your kind words Scott. I think I’ve got the hang of this blogging lark now (just about) so I’ll keep you posted.
Helen Hill

Scott Wulff March 12, 2009 at 9:41 am

Helen,yes,these pictures of your early work can be humbling.However,just be sure to use them as a reference point and continue to make improvements.I have been at the bench for 25+ years and when you see pieces come back from your past,you just look at them and say”oh my goodness,I have come a long way from that time”.I enjoy reading your posts and being able to hear the confidence that you are building in yourself.Keep it up and keep everyone posted.

Scott Wulff
Decatur,IL USA

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