On Rings Part 5

Big Rings

I often have the experience of someone telling me that this or that ring is “too big” or “too small” and so on. But of course it’s not the ring, it’s the person’s taste that we’re talking about. One person only wants bold statements, bright with colour on their hands. Another seeks the absolute minimum – convention requires her to have, say, an engagement band, and she wants the most modest band possible. It has nothing to do with the size of the person or the size of the hands.

Edith Sitwell with rings

Edith Sitwell with rings

Edith Sitwell was petite, but her rings were not.

Some big rings I made in the early '90s.

Some big rings I made in the early ’90s.

I like making big rings, simply because they give me more scope to do things with metal and stones. I’m happy to make small ones, but big rings are more fun.

Ring: Silver, opal, ebony, shakudo

Ring: Silver, opal, ebony, shakudo

Ring: Silver & kameeldoring

Ring: Silver & kameeldoring

Sometimes the material wants size – these two rings use wood along with silver, and due to  limitations of strength one can’t go too small.

Ring: Silver, topaz

Ring: Silver, topaz

Ring, silver, opaque ruby crystal

Ring, silver, opaque ruby crystal

The ring above allowed me to fool with the convention of using claws to set stones.

And sometimes one just gets a big stone, which encourages a bold statement.

Three big rings

Three big rings

Ring: Memento Vivendi, Silver, gold, shakudo

Ring: Memento Vivere, Silver, gold, shakudo

There are times when I have a lot to say, and need room to say it, so the ring ends up being big. You’ll have to click on the photo to see the detail. This ring conceals a golden goddess and has the words “MEMENTO VIVERE” (remember that you are alive).

Three architectural rings: Silver, paua shell, aquamarine crystal, carnelian, paua shell

Three architectural rings: Silver, paua shell, aquamarine crystal, carnelian, paua shell

If you’d asked me when I was twelve what I was going to be when I grew up, I’d have said “an architect”. In the end it was my brother who became the architect, but over the years I have made a number of architectural rings. In the rings above I used various techniques: The first was carved in wax and then cast, the top of the second was carved from a big aquamarine crystal, and the last was fabricated from sheet silver, and is modeled on the Norman church in Staffordshire where an ancestor was the Rector from the 1840s.

Ring, Silver, jade, ruby

Ring, Silver, jade, ruby

Ring: Silver, Jade, Ruby

Ring: Silver, Jade, Ruby

This large ring was great fun to make. The ruby, a cabochon, is set at the bottom of the ring.

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