What do you get when two retired school principals join forces to start a small business? A tutoring service? A consulting service for school districts? Those would be good guesses, but you would be way off base! What you get is a most unlikely business: creating gemstone and multi-metal jewelry!
So how did these two unlikely candidates get into the jewelry-making business? Well, Bob has a degree in earth sciences and has always had a particular interest in rocks and gems. He also, in the past, had hobbies such as making stained glass and tying flies for fishing which, surprisingly, provided him with a skill set that would be very useful in working with silver and gems. Jane has always had a passion for jewelry and gemstones, and an unfulfilled desire to do something creative.
The idea for making jewelry came to the partners at different times and for different reasons. Coincidentally, both partners had to step down from successful careers in education due to ill health. Jane took a series of seminars about finding a new direction in her life, and took the advice given in the seminars to “do what you are passionate about.” Thus, her love of jewelry became her new direction. Bob started “playing” with metal when he retired, and he also found his passion.
As the jewelry evolved, both partners upgraded their skills by taking courses in silversmithing, hammering, forging, gemology, and wirework. They began to make the components for the jewelry, which they embellished with their beautiful collections of gemstones. These days the partners work in their studio, on Vancouver Island, making new pieces for upcoming craft fairs and art festivals. Their jewelry features unique, rare, and unusual gemstones in sterling silver, copper, and brass settings, which range from the traditional silversmithed to elaborate wire sculptures.
Stoneworks Jewellery’s one-of-a-kind pieces can be purchased at major craft fairs and artisan markets from Victoria to Campbell River, and also online at www.stoneworksjewellery.com Shipping is always free within North America. Bob and Jane, still teachers at heart, also present demonstrations and hands-on workshops at various clubs and venues on the island.