June – The Month of Switcheroo

As our weather seems to be settling into more familiar summer patterns, we are heading into a month characterized by various options and shifts.

In the Zodiac, June is mostly for Gemini, the twins. People under this sign can be called indecisive, or impulsive, but having a Gemini dear to my heart, I prefer “flexible” and “innovative” and “spontaneous”.

It is no surprise then, that the birthstone for June is one of three options, and one of those options can change colours depending on the light in which it is seen.

A pearl has often been the traditional choice for a June birthstone, but its soft nacre can make it a delicate choice for everyday wear. These earrings by our Edna Milevsky are perfectly protected and showcased in her handmade designs.

Moonstone comes in different shades and shapes and can be a gorgeous, ethereal addition to any jewellery. Its white clouds and shadows will wave just below the surface as the piece is turned and moved to different angles.

Personally, I love Alexandrite. It is possible to get high quality, natural stones that change colour depending on whether they are viewed in natural light or not. When I say change, I mean big changes – reds, greens, purples, blues. They aren’t “moody”, they just seem different in different situations. It is also possible to get beautiful natural Alexandrites that do not change, and synthetic stones that change colour, at more accessible availability and prices.

Here at Jewel Envy, we have gorgeous pieces ready for your Junebug’s birthday, or have a chat with one of our goldsmiths about creating something new and unique!

Student Projects

My most recent classes have all had such enthusiastics learners that have inspired my general outlook as of late. I try my best to snap pics (not every piece photographs well) but there has been such a range in ideas and skills that have me excited to teach, interact and share more than ever.

Below is an array of images from the last few classes taught by me; resident goldsmith, Manager, new ukulele owner: Alexis.

1) Advanced Casting: mold making multiples, attaching findings, setting gemstones 2) Intro Casting: Ring 3) Intermediate Casting: making multiples, attaching findings 4) Intro Casting: Cuttlefish Casting

Intermediate Casting goals! using a piece in multiple to create a one of a kind standout pieces. Made with recycled silver, reused chain.

1) One Day Intro Enamel: using enamels wet 2) One Day Intermediate Enamel: cloisonné 3) One Day Intro Enamel: using threaders/using enamel wet 4) One Day Intro Enamel: Using stencils/colour blocking 5) One Day Intermediate Enamel: cloisonné/champlevée

Statement Piece- Earrings

Well, winter has definitely disappeared (okay, I won’t tempt fate, so I’ll say-for the moment). It’s supper sunny, so you’re probably all outside! In any case, I thought I’d take the opportunity to tell you about a new piece I made, that is currently on exhibition in BC (yes, it’s done some traveling!), at the annual Craft Council BC Earring Show (you can browse the exhibition catalogue here, extra points if you spot fellow member goldsmith Edna Milevsky’s contribution too!).

I made these specifically to put forward for the Earring Show. In fact, I had intended to put them in last year, but I had some serious Covid malaise going on, and didn’t manage too. That’s okay, it meant my motivation this year was even higher to get them done!

Introducing Tumbling- sterling silver, cast and fabricated, with garnets, roller-printed texture and needled felt. They’re pretty epic at almost 12 g each, and about 3 inches long-they make a statement!

I’m guessing you all are acquainted with my immune cell obsession by now, so I’m sure it’s no big surprise that my piece is science-inspired!

All species have some form of immune system, however, the details are subtly different. The base of my Tumbling earrings is inspired by the shape of chicken red blood cells (which are nucleated, unlike mammalian red blood cells), and mammalian lymphocytes and monocytes. Each earring is constructed in two parts, joined by a hinge. The kinetic movement, and their asymmetric design are meant to give the impression of flow, reflecting the idea that cells in the blood are constantly on the move, and also attach and “tumble” along the inside of blood vessels.

Wax forms before casting for the individual base components.

Auditioning placement of the fabricated components.

I had to get a bit creative when I set the garnets to make sure the piece was supported enough! Lots of improv and making your own widgets in jewellery-making!

So, like I said, they’re currently on the other side of the country, but they’ll probably be back in June, so you can eyeball them in person! In the meantime, if you like the concept, but think something on a slightly smaller scale would suit you, come in and browse other work, or let’s have a conversation!

Enjoy your Saturday!

Robin (House of Cassady)

Spring Moods

Twig and Cube Necklace and Earrings by Gillian Batcher of Pash Jewellery Design
Pod Earrings and Pillars of my Youth Brooch by Alex Kinsley of Kinsley Vey Design
Heart Cufflinks and Silver Cuff by Jerell Reichert of Urban Metal
M Form Pendant and Earring by Robin Cassady-Cain of House of Cassady
Filigree Pendant and Filigree Flower Earrings by Shafiq Sarwari of Shafiq’s Jewelry
Flower Earrings and Cuff by Zef Radi of Radi Brothers
Loop Earrings and Bracelet by Natalia Naranjo of Naty Naranjo Jewellery
Faceted Ring and Labradorite Pendant by Karyn Houston of Sticks vs. Stone
Amorph Earrings and Amethyst Slice Brooch by Edna Milevsky
Track Earrings and Poppy Pendant by Jennifer Trotman of Frekkel Designs
Pink Tourmaline Rings and Peridot Ring by Hyewon Jang, of H Jewellery
Leaf Studs and Star Flower Pendant by Aurora Simmons of Handmade Revolution
Studs and Chrome Chalcedony Druzy Necklace by Alexis Kostuk of glaciale goldsmith

Spring is in the air

Which means it’s a perfect time for nature themed jewellery. Aurora Simmons of Handmade Revolution has a wonderful selection of nature themed pieces like the studd earrings and tourmaline cabochon ring shown in this image. Stud earrings are perfect for every day wear to add a little something to every outfit and make a day feel special. Come visit us in store to see her work in person.

Best Art Jewellery Store in Toronto? (yes, that’s us!)

I don’t know if you caught our studio reel yesterday, but Gillian, the studio owner (organiser? one-woman motivating band?) announced that the shop has won an award for 2021/2022: Best Art Jewellery Store-Toronto.

As you may know, we really strive to build relationships with our community. As a group of goldsmiths, we bring an eclectic aesthetic to the retail area of the studio, as well as high standard of quality. With our dedication to our own unique work, our commitment to helping clients realise their own vision for custom pieces, and our never-tiring pursuit of renewing and repairing your jewellery that you just want to keep on loving, it’s really nice when that dedication is recognised.

Here it is, in it’s new home at the studio!

Of course, it wouldn’t be possible without the support of our community- clients, students and my fellow goldsmiths, so thank you all for helping to contribute to our success, we really do appreciate it, and, as always, we hope to see you around the studio soon.

Enjoy the sunny Saturday!

Robin (House of Cassady)

Beautiful Bead Settings!

Bead setting is a versatile style of setting which can be applied as an accent to a centre stone, or be the star of the show in its own right!

All below examples are custom pieces made by Alex Kinsley of Kinsley Vey Designs

Sapphire and Diamond eternity band
Diamond engagement ring with bead set accent stones
White & Rose gold pendant with bead set diamonds

More online shop items!

Dryad Necklace by Karyn Houston of Sticks vs. Stone
Pearl Studs by Edna Milevsky
Cardinal Earrings by Gillian Batcher of Pash Jewellery Design
Flower Cuff by Zef Radi of Radi Brothers
Blossom Earrings by Hyewon Jang of H Jewellery
Poppy Necklace by Jennifer Trotman of Frekkel Design
Red Ruby Ironwork Earrings by glaciale goldsmith Alexis Kostuk
Coffee Cuff by Jerell Reichert of Urban Metal
Textured Kinetic Earrings by Robin Cassady-Cain of House of Cassady

If you have old jewellery lying around, now is the perfect time to make it into something new!

Do you have some heirloom jewellery lying around in a box that perhaps has emotional significance but isn’t really your style? At Jewel Envy we can make your old pieces new again! If you have a piece with precious metal such as gold, we can use that to make something fresh for you, or if you have precious stones, we can use them to create a whole new design. Something you will want to wear all the time and will still bring back the fond memories attached to the piece. You might be surprised how many fun new things can be done with old pieces, so don’t leave them to languish in the box, bring them in so we can help you get inspired! Below you can see a unique pendant made from a quartz, provided by the client created by Aurora Simmons of Handmade Revolution.

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