Your Leader reporter had the chance to sit down and chat with a fellow storyteller last week. Her name is Jen Knutt and she shares personal stories through her hand-stamped jewellery business.
“A couple of years ago, I fell in love with the ever beautiful custom rings designed by Lisa Leonard,” she says. “I put a little birdie in my husband’s ear and was so thrilled to find them under the tree that Christmas. Four custom rings, each stamped with the names of my whole world. A fire was sparked right then. It was so touching and meaningful to be able to wear a piece of my heart wherever I went.”
Knutt adds, “In that moment, I knew that I wanted to be able to invoke those feelings for others. To design and hand-craft pieces that reminded them of their special memories and moments.”
What exactly is hand-stamped jewellery? “It is hand stamped entirely by hand using a metal letter, number or design stamp and the strike of a brass hammer to stamp each letter one at a time onto a metal disc,” says Knutt. “This creates different depths, spacing and alignment; after stamping your piece, a file is used to sand down any rough edges. I then blacken the letters using a gilders paste and finish it either with a polished look or brushed finish.”
Knutt has an online shop at graceandrhett.com and sets up shop at the All Seasons Market every now and again.
“With each letter being stamped one at a time, I can personalize your piece with anything; a special date, name, co-ordinate, phrase or initial. The options are endless,” she says. “I get a lot of custom orders and I love it, I get to tell people’s stories. And the nice thing about it being handmade is that each piece is unique – one of a kind.”
The Slave Lake Visitor Information Centre along with BB Waxing and Esthetics carry a few of Knutt’s pieces as well.
“There is a big range of products so my prices vary,” she says. “Something can be a little as $10 and can go up to $100. It all depends on the order.”
Though Knutt does the stamping herself, she says the rest of the business is a family affair.
“Grace and Rhett are the middle names of my two oldest children,” she says. “My younger ones helped with designing the brand.”
And while on the topic of the business, Knutt says she’s been quite the busy bee since launching it a year ago.
“My mountain pieces were a big hit and my gold plated hearts were too,” she says. “I’m always bringing in new pieces! I think a lot of people like hand-stamped jewellery because it’s so personal.”
It takes around one to two weeks for a custom piece to be ready to ship says Knutt.
“Everything is made to order, solely by hand,” she says. “During the holidays it can sometimes take a little while longer depending on the amount of orders received. If for some reason, you need your special keepsake a little faster, please email me before ordering and we will see what we can do.”
Orders can be placed online and through email firstname.lastname@example.org.