The studio has completed three of the four rings in the set, two collected yesterday Friday, Nov 20 2015 

I have posted on this commission before, it is featured on our 2015 commissioner’s report also this year. Every diamond ring from her earlier life was scrapped and Barbara’s funky version of our ‘London Bridge’ design was chosen for her re-styled engagement ring (centre). The set is now extended with these two ‘Channel Set’ wedding rings, remade using all of her existing diamonds. This type of commission can invigorate a person’s future journey while retaining intimate material worn close for so many years . . . restyled . . . intimate . . . made fashionable again . . . future proof.

I have three other shots – onetwothree.

Recycled briefs are so interesting in that – with design options and feedback they have their own journey Monday, Nov 2 2015 

What started with a request for designs for Mary’s mutton fat jade beads went in another direction, second meeting when her four beautiful old cut Diamonds and a pair of oval Ceylon sapphires dropped onto Barbara’s desk. “Maybe make a lovely pendant for my daughter-in-law with these, then?” Designs were drawn up, diamonds sourced and the task quoted.

Feedback suggested earrings would be more appropriate, additional design and quoting:

Commission ©Bh  – Drop Earrings with Mary’s old cut diamonds (4=1.2cts) and pair of oval Ceylon Sapphires (2=2.28ct). Delicate design as sketched has diamond set stud with post and butterfly fitting above linked drop diamond with linked Sapphire below. All settings in fine open backed four prong style. 18ct palladium white gold with polished finish. Length 20mm.


Her sixteen pieces of old jewellery transformed into a new wearable necklet Wednesday, Sep 30 2015 

Barbara made the first ‘In-Line’ necklet to fully develop her idea using elements from her symbol language and quirky gems from our collection. Barbara made the first one for herself. Once the new necklace clasp and elements were resolved, we decided to retain it in the studio for visitors to see the concept. As we are spending the majority of bench time making for our studio commission clients, the opportunity to create big ticket stock items is limited. We have kept this concept as a “made to order” only.

Larger shot – here, snapshot on a jewellery shoulder – here . . . and a detail below:


The same day that the previous commission was collected from the studio we received excited texts from Freemantle in Western Australia – two more commissions were collected at the post office, there. Tuesday, Jun 9 2015 

1) Barbara’s © Bar and Ring clasp is such a successful solution to stringing pearls and beads . . . worn to the front as a statement. Susan’s favourite oval moonstone set in an Argentium rub over setting and her Mother’s Akoya pearl strand reduced to a choker length, knotted and restrung.

2) Little finger signet ring set with a single old cut diamond from Susan’s Great-Grandfather. Design has the diamond set low, in an oval textured cartouche on a new style reeded band in 18ct palladium white gold.

Barbara’s next Tasmanian show will open June 26, 2015 at Handmark Gallery in Hobart Monday, May 25 2015 

Just an advanced notice and the last June date we want you to drop into your diary. The studio is on track to finish all the makes by this Friday, then I have some time to complete all the imaging, pricing and documentation. The entire series of rings, pendants, necklaces and brooches are all featuring ‘porcelain shards’ found on and around our property in Tunbridge, Tasmania. This should not come as a surprise as Barbara has used found elements as the set “gems” in works since the mid – nineteen eighties. Buttons, beads, glass, wood, steel, other jewellery have all been recycled and incorporated but this show is purely Tasmanian based with antique relics which the earth has given up to us.

Elements from our range of high carat and unique gem stone jewellery from numerous © Bh ‘styles’ are also showing in our cabinets at Hobart and Evandale and via the Handmark web.

Ziggy and ronE at Parattah Friday, Mar 6 2015 

Other shots in this private garden and colonial collector’s home we visited . . . the sandstone sculptures are all done by the owner also

Bunting some thing, bunting fun thing . . . would go a long way wrapped around your tree Monday, Dec 22 2014 

A joyous thing for your backyard tree, something hand-made by K.T.

Her JEANBAG® enterprise branched out (pun intended) this year to bunting and I was a-taken-a-back by all the bunting I happened to notice since I saw her recycled denim handy work. I was so busy towards the end of the season to go get some + we don’t do a traditional tree BUT for all those fornicating trees in the backyard, I can think of nothing better!

A family affair – studio commissions rather than random finds while Christmas browsing Saturday, Dec 20 2014 

Lyn Taylor’s brief sheet starts with the date 1/10/2014 and notes delivery in time for Christmas wrapping . . . something for daughter Kate and two things for Lyn. Her large lace dish earrings with x10 of her old cut diamonds, her rubies and recycle her three family rings, white enamel fusion in 18ct yellow gold with those easy-to-wear hooks that Barbara and Juan-luis do so well.

The studio buys back the gold, unsets the stones, weighs and notes the gem details and uses refined gold for its purity. The rings were possibly from early 1900s but the diamonds were from much earlier times, being old rose cuts probably recycled when the rings were made. The diamonds were lovely and clear as were the rubies. We sourced more 2.5mm rubies to get the symmetry right. A large .pdf is here.

Lyn’s wide ‘saddle style’ ring (detail below) with her gold filigree removed from old ring and reapplied to a new © Bh ring with oxidised silver finish.

Kates new ring below using her Amethyst, (11.5mm x 7mm scissor cut 1=3.00ct) set into a tapered rectangular box setting, fitted low for protection and held with x4 claws. Setting is fitted to © Bh ‘cheapside style’ band with each shoulder junction having a cluster of beads as detail in organic style – set with yellow Sapphires and Tzavorite Garnets. 9ct palladium white gold with burnished finish.

I’m busy scanning and preparing posts while the two jewellers slog away on the final makes for the year. A few dedicated commissioners have opted to wait until the new year. More studio visitors who have returned to family here have visited and picked up gifts – most work is reconsigned to our three retailers but we keep studio favourites here for the next five days, right up to Christmas eve.

Our annual ‘Jeweller to the Lost’ commissioners + friends, two day studio sale starts tomorrow at 10:00am Friday, Dec 5 2014 

Special makes, stock returned from retailers, some vintage 80’s and 90’s Barbara items, some gem fiends only concentrate on gem stock – everything at wholesale and less until the studio closes for the summer break. This annual event helps us clear the stock trays and assists new year metal and gem purchases, it also enables collectors and fans to stock up on another signature piece while others are here for three or more well-priced gifts.

Additional pic selection: – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 7 – 8

Place and Adornment – A history of contemporary jewellery in Australia and New Zealand Saturday, Nov 8 2014 

This well researched and much anticipated book is now available to everyone interested in the subject, across the divide from both directions. I’ve altered the cover of the book shot to show that the magic is out-of-the-box.

Barbara’s email to Kevin has been copied into this post, below. Published by Bateman ISBN – 978 1 869 53 820 0

Hi Kevin, Wow! really.” “I have been dipping in and out of this book – it would be curious to map a trail of my exploration…I started at the beginning of course, no that’s not quite true, of course I started by looking up my name in the index to hastily read the section on myself – an act which in itself reveals the enormity of your project from the outset – i.e. the number of artist egos you must have had to negotiate to gather all this material together. That fact alone is extraordinary and I/we all thank you for it. Anyway after finding my own story succinctly told and enjoying the subsequent wave of warm inclusion, I went to the pages on Ray Norman, my friend and mentor. I have had so many conversations with Ray and so often thought, ‘I must write this down’, so I loved reading about his early years couched within your overview of the context within which he was working. Here was both a revelation and a re-iteration of the familiar – I felt gratitude again for details recorded. Praise the archivist.” “But also I began to get a sense of this quality of dispassionate overview; the placing, recording and grouping, the timeline and the larger cultural themes. Its like having a key to unlock the story of one’s own category…the fascination of looking through the other end of the telescope.” “So then I focussed on the Australian segments and thought , mmm maybe I’ll read the NZ parts later… but quite quickly (good plan to have each section flow back and forth across the ditch seamlessly) I got hooked into the whole. So…I am hooked and enjoying the ride tremendously – and wanted to let you know sooner rather than wait until I get to the end.” “I hope you are both receiving mountains of praise for what we know to be a considerable amount of labour. More in due course,” “Cheers and love from Barbara”

Kevin adds that he has started another blog to post all the material taken from texts prepared but not included in the final published work + updates –


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