While restoring her Craftsman-style home in Seattle, American Made artist Ellen Lyons found that her spirit was also in need of rehabilitation. So, with encouragement from a friend, she enrolled in a gemologist course at the Gemological Institute of America. “That one course hooked me forever,” says Lyons, explaining that after learning about the gemstones, she wanted to set them. “I took several fabrication and design courses, then earned graduate diplomas in both Diamonds and Colored Stones from the GIA.”
Her current work is inspired by a love of languages, extensive world travels, historic relics and architectural details, such as those found on a mosque from the Ottoman Empire. “I once woke up at 3:00 am in Istanbul with several designs in my head,” explains Lyons, “I turned on the light, grabbed my sketchbook and finjan (a Turkish coffee pot), then sketched out six new pairs of earrings and pendants.”
In the studio, Lyons fabricates silver and gold jewelry using metals that she, herself, has alloyed or textured, gilded or reticulated. Of course, the artist is also known to embellish her work with certified gemstones or ancient glass.
“I’m working on reticulated silver jewelry featuring Roman glass shards that date back to the destruction of the 2nd Temple of Jerusalem in 70 CE,” says Lyons, “The glass shards are pieces of history that I carefully preserve so that their iridescence lasts for millennia.”
You can look forward to meeting this artist and seeing her truly one-of-a-kind metals, exquisite gems and historic elements at the American Made Show in Dallas.
Company Name: Ellen Lyons Jewelry Design
Studio Location: Seattle, WA