Kathleen Lynagh Jewelry Design

designing jewelry & re-creative jewelry for the costume & film industry

WJA Maker’s Project 2016

The Women’s Jewelry Association Maker’s Project, is a fundraiser for the WJA San Diego Chapter. This event will benefit the local and national WJA scholarship fund. It is a two-part event that will culminate in a reception and auction at the Women’s Museum of California at NTC Liberty Station on Saturday, July 30th, 2016

This year I was able to participate in the event. Each designer is to bring a handmade jewelry item (sample, casting, cut off, gem etc.) and trade it for “gem” from a fellow WJA Maker. This “gem” is then used in a wearable jewelry design that will be auctioned at the fundraiser.

The 2016 theme for the WJA Maker’s II Project is “She Inspired Me…”

Kathleen Lynagh WJA Maker's Project 2016

There are many females in my life that have inspired me. So I looked to my “gem” for inspiration and found the answer, I realized that Mother Nature was the influence for this piece so I decide I would go with the strongest feminine entity in the world, Mother Nature.

Kathleen Lynagh WJA Project 2016
The enameled “gem” reminded me of bamboo. Using the leaves from the bamboo tree I developed a stylised design for the necklace. After finishing my pencil sketches, I moved the design process into Adobe Illustrator to create the outlines for my template. Once the line work was complete I mounted the design to my salvage copper sheet that I purchased from Industrial Sheet Metal in San Diego.
Kathleen Lynagh WJA Maker's Project 2016
Hand piercing the metal is time consuming, but I love the graphic quality of the leaves next to the enameled panel. I also wanted the back of the pendant to be a complete design not simply a back plate.

Kathleen Lynagh CM Cross 2016 9

Once the bezel was soldered in place, I oxidized the copper and brushed the edges to bring out the copper highlights. I selected copper colored freshwater pearls to complement the highlights in the oxidized copper. I handmade a pearl chain using these pearls and oxidized the sterling silver for added contrast.

Kathleen Lynagh WJA Maker's Project 2016
The back of the pendant is open to show the entire pattern.

Kathleen Lynagh WJA Maker's Project 2016

The WJA Maker’s 2 Project will be held at the Women’s Museum of California, 2730 Historic Decatur Road, 103, San Diego, CA 92106

When: Saturday, July 30th 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Cost: Each Maker will receive one complimentary ticket for the event, additional tickets cost $10 for WJA members and $15 for non-members. Tickets can be purchased at the door.


Diamonds Galore

Diamonds are formed deep within the Earth about 100 miles or so below the surface in the upper mantle. Diamonds are quite old. At least hundreds of millions of years old, but in most cases billions of years old, anywhere from one to three billion years old, a time when the earth was probably hotter than it is today and so conditions were perhaps more appropriate for diamond growth.  Smithsonian.

Lately diamonds have been hot so to speak.

The most outstanding ones for me are the diamonds with color.


The Red Diamond
The 5.11 ct Fancy Moussaieff Red. Most other reddish diamonds are “cooler” in appearance and termed purplish red. Courtesy of William Goldberg Diamond Corp.
A purplish red 0.76 ct diamond from the Argyle Mine in Australia. Courtney of Gia
Vivid Oppenheimer Blue Diamond

According to Christie’s website, this 14.62 ct. diamond called the Oppenheimer Blue, is the largest fancy vivid blue diamond ever offered for auction.

Shown here, in a platinum ring, flanked on each side by a trapeze-shape diamond, accompanied by its original Verdura mounting. (Photo courtesy of Christie’s)

“The Oppenheimer Blue can only be described as one of the rarest gems in the world,” said Curiel. “It is the gem of gems.”Those details are part of what makes the gem so rare. Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s head of jewelry, told CNBC that less than 2 percent of the diamonds found in the world are blue, and only 10 percent of them are larger than a carat.

“Blue diamonds range from a very faint baby blue, a powder blue, to a dark, dark-indigo blue [that’s] almost too dark,” Kadakia said. “Vivid is the purest, most open, almost a happy blue color.”

Indigo Blue Diamond
30.82-carat The Blue Heart Diamond


Vivid Orange Diamond

The Orange: The largest Fancy Vivid Orange diamond in the world.

The fancy vivid orange pear-shaped diamond weighing approximately 14.82 carats.  Termed ‘fire diamonds’ by famous gemologist Edwin Streeter, pure orange diamonds remain incredibly rare, with so few having been graded that the exact cause of their colour remains a mystery. Sold for: CHF32,645,000 ($35,543,804) on 12 November 2013 at Christie’s in Geneva
The Graff Vivid Yellow Diamond
The Graff Vivid Yellow, the colour of a daffodil and weighing 100.09 carats, part of Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels and Nobel Jewels.
Dresden Green Diamond

The most famous natural-color green diamond is considered by many to be the Dresden Green . GIA. The green color in a diamond is the result of exposure to radiation. The source of the radiation can be naturally occurring or performed in a laboratory. Natural radiation is the result of the diamond being exposed to radioactive uranium from rocks near the earth’s surface.

The largest-known natural green diamond weighing approximately 41 carats
The Dresden Green diamond set in a hat ornament made by Prague jeweler Diessbach in 1768. Photograph by GIA
The Argyle Violet Diamond
The Argyle Violet Diamond
This extremely rare diamond is 2.83 carats, polished in an oval shape, and known as The Argyle Violet. Photo: Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto has recovered its largest ever violet diamond from its Argyle mine in Western Australia.


Unique Pink Diamond

The “Unique Pink,” the largest Fancy Vivid pink pear-shaped diamond ever offered at auction, came to Sotheby’s New Bond street galleries in London. According to Ehud Laniado, the head of Cora International “People are bidding very high prices, which means that they don’t see diamonds as just an expense,” he says. “They are starting to be seen as an asset, more than something you just use in jewelry. In 11 years, pink stones have gone up by 350 percent. Compare that to gold, which only went up 150 percent.” With this said the unique point is made for the pink.

Just 0.1 per cent of the 20 million carats of rough diamonds produced annually are pink, and, of these, the number weighing more than half a carat would fit into the palm of your hand.

Paris Moodboards — Terry Dresbach

Creating Moodboards are essential in the creative design process. Whether you are designing jewelry or gorgeous costumes… Continue reading “Paris Moodboards — Terry Dresbach”

TEFAF Maastricht – if you missed this event check this out

TEFAF Maastricht, regarded as the world’s leading art fair and a place where standards of excellence for the art world are set.

This year I virtually attended the event when I received Jewels of Jour blog post Treasures from Tefaf Maastricht. Here are a few of my favorites from the event.

Tefaf 2016

image fromJewelsduJour5
This sculptural exhibit space forms a showcase for Hemmer’s new collection.

Tom Postma Design Hemmerle TEFAF 2016 (4) Continue reading “TEFAF Maastricht – if you missed this event check this out”

My Journey to Tucson

I consider myself very lucky. I was able to venture out this year, into the land of gems, and  see the 2016 International Tucson Gem Show. I have been attending this annual show since I was a buyer for a design studio in Oakland back in the early 90’s. Seems like ages ago. But I never grow tired of the amazing sights to behold, tables piled high with gems and pearls. Need I say any more. Continue reading “My Journey to Tucson”

Duality in Color

WHAT IS THE PANTONE COLOR OF THE YEAR?   At the beginning of each year I take a good look at the colors selected by Pantone (a company noted for standardizing the use of color in printing) and ponder how it may affect my jewelry designs for the new season.

Pantone colors for 2016                 Kathleen Lynagh Designs

This year, two of the colors selected took me by surprise. Designing with soft subtle shades has never been my forte. Continue reading “Duality in Color”

Rarely do I see work like this…

lydia_courteille_rainbow_warrior_earringsLydia Courteille’s new jewellery collection tells the tale of a Native American legend, thru the use of vibrant gemstones and amazing metalwork. She is one of my a favorite designers, bold and adventurous, two characteristics that I admire. Continue reading “Rarely do I see work like this…”

My Studio

A simple place where we work everyday, creating jewelry, developing designs for clients and loving life.

KathleenLynaghDesigns 2015

Living in Southern California has it’s perks, almost constant sunshine and warm weather so we can work with the windows wide open, how pleasant it is to work in our studio.

But let’s be real, you should take this tour of a wonderful studio in Paris, a video virtual tour of the Van Cleef & ArpelsContinue reading “My Studio”

Custom Jewelry – Designed For Love

I never really know how work will come to the studio. One would think that I do, but it doesn’t work that way. Sometimes it’s by word of mouth, or thru my website or past clients that bring me new design projects. Whichever they may be, I am grateful for the design challenges that come my way.

Continue reading “Custom Jewelry – Designed For Love”

Van Cleef & Arpels: Wouldn’t seeing this be worth a trip to Paris?

Inspiration comes to us in many ways. Continue reading “Van Cleef & Arpels: Wouldn’t seeing this be worth a trip to Paris?”

Apple ring coming soon?

The first step has been taken.

Last Spring, Apple filed a design patent for a ring. I was not surprised. It was just a matter of time before they would add a smart ring to their jewelry collection.

Apple Smart Ring Patent
Here are some links to images and paper work for those of you who are just curious and not working in the patent office.  Continue reading “Apple ring coming soon?”

Where do we find inspiration?

Inspiration : something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create : a force or influence that inspires someone : a person, place, experience, etc., that makes someone want to do or create something

: a good idea

Continue reading “Where do we find inspiration?”


Today at Bonhams London, the Hope Spinel sent the jewelry world a buzz with its historic selling price of $1,464,662 (including premium)


What an Amazing Color, the Hope Spinel

On September 24, at Bonhams London Fine Jewellery Sale, this rare beautiful spinel gemstone, will be offered for sale for the first time in 98 years. I love jewels from the past.

Hope SPinel
This gorgeous 50.13-carat octagonal step-cut spinel, call the the Hope Spinal, it is expected to fetch $240,000 – $310,000.

Continue reading “What an Amazing Color, the Hope Spinel”

Moonstone: a Favorite Gemstone

Shown above: Carved Moonstone from the National Gem Collection

Moonstones are beautiful gems from the Earth.  During the summer while researching gemstones for a custom design project, I came across some interesting gemstone facts from AGTA, the American Gem Trade Association.

Shown here is a checker board cut moonstone cabochon, set into a sterling silver frame ring. A one of a kind design by Kathleen Lynagh Designs to highlight the gemstone's fine qualities.
Shown here is a checker board cut moonstone cabochon, set into a sterling silver frame ring. A one of a kind design by Kathleen Lynagh Designs to highlight the gemstone’s fine qualities.

Continue reading “Moonstone: a Favorite Gemstone”

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