A Red Agate stone set in a handmade sterling silver case decorated with leaves and butterfly.
I saw a piece of jewellery in a shop window in Spain a few years ago. The stone was decorated with a small leaf in the corner and it looked good. I wondered if I could do any better. In fact I wondered if I could do it at all. It was a concept that fascinated me. I had never tried to decorate a stone simply because I believed it a very risky process. Stones of most varieties are not cheap. I could spend a lot of money on the stone and very easily damage or crack it in a second with a drill. I looked into the process and how it could be done. In fact there were not that many jewellers to ask as most set them in either rings or pendants without altering their appearance at all. But I had this idea of wanting the stone itself to tell a story. However there were many problems to overcome in securing the image into the stone in way that would endure the test of time and also be worn in comfort. I thought about what sort of stone I should use. It would have to have the qualities that one could work. It should not be too brittle or uneven so that it would fracture easily under the heat of the drill and a cooling process would have to be applied. I eventually designed a drill with a water pump attachment that would cool the stone as it was worked. It was not easy drilling into agate. It’s quite hard and it takes time. This is the outcome.
The story of the stone is one of transformation. The butterfly is a rest on a leaf. The red stone conveys the sunset. The butterfly was once a humble caterpillar but now it has the power of flight and can spend its days fluttering in the open air and the sun. The butterfly has transformed its existance and appearance. This pendant states ” What next?”