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  • Ellen Hunt

Architecture and Jewelry

There are a lot of architect jewelers, and jewelers who like architectural themes. Zaha Hadid was my favorite architect jeweler, but the thing I like about both jobs is how I work with my clients and customers. All of my jewelry tells a story, some stories are very simple, like the progression of the diameters of circles in a necklace, other stories have to do with place and landscape and memory. But I think by far my favorite work is one on one with customers, the way I work with my architecture clients. Often people will come to me with a problem to solve...they want a piece to celebrate a special occasion but don't know how to express it visually, or they have an old piece of jewelry they want to re-purpose and can't quite decide how to make a new object. I love helping them tell a new story with a piece of jewelry. I'll sit down with them, talk about their goals, how they want to achieve them, discuss budget and materials (this sounds a lot like an architectural discussion, right?), and time frame. I have to admit I work very slowly. And lately I seem to make and remake the same piece several times before I'm happy with the results. It's not perfectionism, it's that I have an idea in my mind of how I want something to look, and if my hands can't make the thing I imagine, I'm not happy. Sometimes there are happy accidents, but not often. In the end I'm able to help someone achieve their goal, and that's a wonderful thing.

I also love telling stories about where I live. In general and specifically. For instance, there is a beautiful redbud tree outside my living room window that has struggled to grow on the north side of the house, right under the eaves. We think it was planted, rather than volunteered in that location, because of the placement in front of a picture window. This tree has inspired lots of pieces of jewelry. I love that it blooms so early in the spring, has this brilliant flash of color for such a short time, and has leaves that are such an exotic shape. I don't think I'll ever tire of trying to tell the story of that tree. Recently I made a series of pins and charms based upon Texas cattle brands. They are weird and strange shapes, and I don't think I'm done exploring that theme. And then there are bodies of water, which are both recognizable and unique. Their shapes provide me with lots of ideas for charms and links. Especially in Texas, where water is so precious, the lakes charms remind me that the landscape that holds our lakes and rivers is precious too.

I'm always around to talk about jewelry and the story you want to tell, just give me a call.

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