A Silver Cacao Pod

My goal for January had been to publish a blog once a week…. but then time escaped me.

At the beginning of December in 2018, I had an idea to make jewellery with a chocolate theme.  What you may not know about me is that I am trained as a Goldsmith and for many years owned my own business.  As life changed I stopped making jewellery as a full time gig and moved onto other easier, more practical, jobs that worked into my life a bit better.  Yet I have all my jewellery supplies, and a nice studio in our home where I can still make and create jewellery.

In November I made some life changes.  I went from working at three offices as a Dental Assistant to only working at one office part time.  I think this helped ease a lot of stress for me and gave me a bit of time to relax and slow down.

Then one day, several weeks after slowing down, it just came to me.  Chocolate themed jewellery.  I jumped up and went to find paper and within half an hour had the rough idea for at least 12 pieces of jewellery.

img_20190126_195557_resized_20190126_111544478

At that point I had to decide what to do about these ideas.  I had quit my jobs with the intention of beginning a chocolate tasting business in the Ottawa area, I even have an almost complete business plan ready. However, this jewellery thing was calling loudly to me.  Apparently, now is the time.  So I talked about it with a few people – my partner says I was straight up giddy about my ideas.  Then, I thought about it, how to do it, where to start, and friends, here it is, my first limited edition chocolate themed jewellery piece.

But first, here’s my new logo!

final_logo

I put lots of happiness into making each and every cacao pod.  Each one has its own shape and character, each piece is a one-of-a-kind creation.

My goldsmithing background and my love of chocolate come together to create wearable chocolate art. Hand crafted in small batches with my own two hands.  This sterling silver Cacao Pod is a limited edition and there are only 100 available.

img_20190126_195410_resized_20190126_111543563
Shown are several of the limited edition sterling silver cacao pod necklaces.

Each is unique as I free hand each pod, first with pencil, then with a saw blade, sometimes following the lines, but mostly using them as a rough guide.

piercing
Using my jewellers saw to cut out the cacao pods.

After I have a pod pieced out of the sheet of sterling silver, I drill holes, one for each cacao bean in the pod.  That’s a lot of holes.  These holes are also done randomly, looking at each piece and letting my tools guide me to let me know if this pod has 7 beans or 15.

holes
A pile of pods on my workbench waiting for their round holes to be made oval. The paper on the silver helps protect from scratches as well as being a guide for me.

Then I thread my teeny-tiny saw blade into each hole and make it oval, just like a cacao bean. After all the beans are to my liking I then file and tweak each and every pod to be sure it is unique and smooth.

piercing1
Using my saw to make the bean shapes in the cacao pod.

Next on to the finishing stages: filing, sanding, making and soldering rings, polishing.

filing
Filing the inside of all the cacao bean details.
jumprings
Making the ring that the pendant hangs from.

After everything is done, chains are added, then the item is packaged.

workspace
A view of my workbench these days.  Fueled by m&ms.
img_20190126_195557_resized_20190126_111544478
A close up view of one of the sterling silver cacao pod pendants.

I have paid close attention to all the details of this project.  One of my favourite parts was making the paper the pieces are displayed and packaged on.  I made paper once before when I worked in a daycare center, a very long time ago.  So after a few videos on the internet and a few pieces of trial paper, I decided what worked best and went with it.

cacaopapermaking
Our dining room table covered in wet paper.

I created all the paper backing for the jewellery pieces from recycled chocolate bar wrappers.  Yep,  I kept bunches of them and finally found a way to use them.  Making the paper was actually pretty cool.  It took me a few days, as the paper dries slowly, but I am very happy with the result.  Each sheet is unique, some very different from one other.  Cacao husk has been added to it as well so it had chocolate in it.

cacaopapers
An example of the papers created.

I love how this has turned out, and it was a great way to upcycle my used chcocolate bar wrappers.  I can’t wait to make more!

You can purchase my Sterling Silver Cacao Pod here.

Published by canadianchocoholic

I’m exploring the world of chocolate one bite at a time. I live in Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, though I have lived in many area of this wonderful country. Besides chocolate I love water (possibly I’m a mermaid) and trees. I’m creative and love making things with my hands.

2 thoughts on “A Silver Cacao Pod

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: