April’s birthstone is the diamond, so my procrastinating ass is going to squeeeeeeze in an April Jewel of the Month post at the last possible moment! Behold, the black-diamond version of my 2010 single-stone platinum Gravity band.
This design was originally created as a unisex wedding ring, but I made the new ring as a personal piece of mourning jewelry for the late, great Purrkoy the kitten, who died in December 2018. Purrkoy had a black, heart-shaped nose …
… so I got the black heart diamond on May 9, 2019, from the same diamond dealer who specially cut my black skull diamonds.
Until I looked up the diamond’s acquisition date just this minute, I didn’t realize I got the the stone on the same day that Purrkoy’s little brother Robin was born. How purrfect!
However, I was busy with other projects — the customers’ jewelry always comes first — so I put off making my ring till the following year. And we all know how crazy 2020 turned out to be. The ring was actually finished last year, but between the protests, the pandemic, and the fight against fascism, I didn’t have time to think about or even wear jewelry. But I’m finally getting back to the jewelry business.
You know I love my secret jewelry details, so, in honor of Purrkoy, there’s a little pawprint on the flip side of this ring.
Normally, I prefer black diamonds to be set in 18K yellow gold, rather than a white metal. My Carpe Diem necklace is a good example of that look.
But for Purrkoy’s ring, I decided it was essential to stick to his real-life color scheme.
If you’re interested in a similar ring, holla at me at info at wendybrandes dot com. You can choose between a white or black diamond and also select your metal: 18K yellow, rose, or white gold, or platinum, like mine. And if you really need a size 7 ring right this minute, don’t be shy. Really. While I’m sentimental enough to create my own mourning pieces, I’m still a jewelry designer, so I’m practical enough to know that I can always make another piece. That’s how I wound up selling my mourning ring for my dog, Mr. Chubbs, to Lindsay Lohan back in 2006 or so.
That’s a great story, actually. As I wrote years ago:
“Shortly after I made the buckle ring, I visited a Los Angeles store that carried my line for several years. The manager REALLY liked the ring and convinced me to leave the original with the store as a sample while I made another one to replace it. After I got over the trauma of leaving the ring behind, I got practical and said, “Look, if someone wants it that bad before I send you the new ring, you can polish out the name and I’ll make myself another Chubbs ring.” While the new ring was still in the works, Lindsay Lohan came into the store. This was in 2006 or 2007, before things really went downhill for her. She’d bought several of my designs, including the Medici poison ring, at this store. Lindsay was very taken with the buckle ring. The store manager said, “We’ll polish out the name for you,” but Lindsay said no thanks. She wanted it immediately and would take it as is. So off she went with a ring that said “Mr. Chubbs”! I got a lot of pleasure out of this. Mr. Chubbs was a very quiet dog. He spent most of his time, especially in his later years, snoozing under the coffee table. I felt like he’d been reincarnated as a party animal. I pictured him living her glamorous life: going on shopping sprees, posing on the red carpet, dancing on tables, getting pulled over for driving under the influence — all the things young Hollywood types enjoy. I imagine that the ring was lost during one of Lindsay’s many (mis)adventures years ago, but I think Chubbs had a lot of fun while it lasted. Thanks, Lindsay!”
Over the years, I’ve made other hinged buckle rings for gorgeous clients — for non-mourning occasions, only — but interestingly I never remade the Chubbs ring for myself. It still gives me a lot of satisfaction to think that a one-of-a-kind Mr. Chubbs ring is out there in the world, living its independent life. If someone chances upon it one day, hopefully they’ll read this post and get in touch with me. Things like that do happen!