I have always been fascinated by hand engraving. One may see evidence of the art on platters and markers as well as jewelry pas the colonial times in to ancient works of art. The process is “simple”: one takes a very hard and well sharpened implement known as a “graver” made of steel and cuts a fine line into silver, gold or other “soft” metals. The way the graver is sharpened depends on the kind of cut. One can go from a fine line to a wide slice depending on the angle of the cut. Often this is used in pavé or other stone settings. The art is developed over years of practice. There are some that spend their entire career doing nothing but engraving.
Another part of my work is the actual design of a piece: knot work is common in many Celtic designs available elsewhere, but typically they are reproductions from the book of Kells. Although I am capable of re-creating these knots, I am also able to design knot work that have never been seen before.
By combining hand engraving and the art of knot work design I can produce unique pieces of jewelry that stand out from the mass produced and machine designed pieces. The latest work is an original knot I developed for a client’s sterling collar.
Silver Collar Necklace
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I have always been fascinated with Celtic knot work and the art of engraving. The skill and finese it takes to achieve Celtic art is misleading to some, for it looks like it is easy to do. Not so, the Celts were true masters of their art. I used to just hang around the engraving booth at the mall to watch the engravers put fine scroll work onto wedding gifts like goblets and platters and to this day continue to have a fondness for engraved metals. The fact that you hand engrave is awe inspiring, because not too many people can do this without the assistance of machines. I like the clean stylish look of this piece and how the engraving becomes a timeless accent of fluidity and artistry. Keep up the great work Merlin.