What are you doing for your 40th bday?

Birthdays are always special, but the big 4-0 is a huge milestone.

Recently, I was honored to make a ring for my dear friend Lisa’s 40th. It inspired me to write about how special heirloom jewelry can be, and when it’s most appropriate.

Seth and Lisa have been friends of mine since college. I went to their wedding and have known them for about 20 years. So when Seth came to me with the idea, I was immediately on board.

The inspiration for the piece came from Seth’s mother, Anita.

Anita was a special woman, and she and Lisa shared a love of Sapphires. “I have always been drawn to the deep blue color of the stone,” says Lisa. When Anita passed, she left a special request for Lisa to inherit all of her sapphire jewelry.

“It reinforced what I always felt, we had a special connection and over the years our relationship grew to one of mutual love and respect.” – Lisa

With the stones already meaning so much, it was an added delight for Lisa to learn their symbolic ties to loyalty and fidelity. Reading this about sapphires sparked the idea to create an heirloom ring incorporating Anita’s stones with the diamond from Lisa’s engagement ring. As a couple, they decided to use three and not four of the stones to represent each of their three children.

And what a better time to honor all of this than a fortieth birthday?

I was blown away when Seth explained the idea to me! Having lost my mother at a young age, I feel that I truly understand how meaningful this ring is to both Seth and Lisa. I couldn’t wait to get to work.

This was the finished product…


I love these rings! The Engagement ring was redesigned and featured the original diamond from Lisa’s engagement ring. We added another matching diamond to encase a nearly 3 carat sapphire stone. The matching band features three of Seth’s mother’s sapphires.

Tiny diamond details are spotted along the band and in unexpected details. The details are my favorite part. I love the hand engraved vintage wheat pattern and mill-grain details.

Lisa ended up getting her present early though, on perhaps an even more symbolic day. The two were out to dinner on Anita’s birthday when he brought out the ring, saying it was the perfect day.

“The ring is exquisite and the details breathtaking, I love it! Every time I look at the ring I am reminded of Anita and her beautiful smile, I wasn’t expecting that and I’m realizing that the ring is a wonderful way to keep her memory alive and close to my heart.” – Lisa

I’m so touched and happy to have been a part of this wonderful experience for Seth and Lisa. It was a great joy creating a piece for them knowing the background behind it. When I work with my clients, it is a great asset to have a meaningful story attached to the work I am creating; it adds texture and inspiration for the littlest of details.

Their case is just one example of how special heirloom jewelry can be.

Important birthdays and anniversaries can be the perfect occasions for it as well.

Do you have any heirloom stones waiting to be set into a meaningful piece of jewelry? It’s a great way to explore the meaning of the piece!


Do you have jewelry that reminds you of a loved on lost? http://bit.ly/SyZdmH via @tracymatthewsny

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