Thursday, October 1, 2015


In early 2011, I was sorting through a bag of gemstones belonging to Ivaan. Among the stones there was a large, very unusual specimen.  The sides and underside were smooth; the top surface was craggy and unpolished.  It was multicoloured and very striking.  The shape caught my attention, because one side of it was quite straight, while the other three sides were curved, giving it a unique assymetrical appearance.

I must have been in a sorting mood, because within a day or two I was sorting a tray of bronze ring masters, and among them was a ring of the same size and odd configuration. I began to wonder if Ivaan had made a ring to fit the stone.  So I retrieved the stone, slipped it in the bronze ring, and it fit perfectly. This was quite an exciting discovery, and I wondered why the ring had never been completed.

I decided to make a mould of the bronze master and to duplicate the ring in sterling silver.  This wasn't easy, because a certain amount of shrinkage can occur when making a mould, but eventually I was  able to fit the stone perfectly into the silver ring.  I showed it to  Ivaan's former partner, Tamas, who is extremely knowledgeable about gemstones and was astonished to learn that the stone was an opal.  I usually see opals as highly polished pale gemstones with a milky, almost translucent appearance, whereas the colours in this stone are quite vibrant.

Here is the finished product.  I had a very strong sense that this ring was destined for the finger of our longtime friend Vladyana, who is a great fan of Ivaan's work.  So I went out to lunch with Vladyana and Jack, showed her the ring, and she tried it on.  Just like my experience of trying the gemstone in the bronze master, the ring slipped onto her finger like it was meant to be there. And that's when I knew it had found its home.

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