Equinox I - spring.

The Vernal equinox will be here on Wednesday, March 20, and mark the beginning of spring. Night and day will be equally long, and then it will shift - the light is eating away on the dark, bringing with it leaves and flowers, seeds growing, new things beginning. Things that have been dormant. Things like ELK market metal. When I decided to take a break I said, until spring. Spring. It was November then, the Baltic sea was biting cold and grey and in the forest, the leaves were covering the ground in a brown, wet blanket. Spring felt far, far away. And now… now we are here, in the middle of March, the oxen weeks (as we call them in Sweden - the time between epiphany and easter) are drawing to an end, light seeps through the curtains already before it’s time to rise in the morning. Yes.

The lavender in my garden is coming back to life; it’s barely visible, only as a light change in colour. It’s there if you look closely, through the chill winds and icy rain.

The lavender in my garden is coming back to life; it’s barely visible, only as a light change in colour. It’s there if you look closely, through the chill winds and icy rain.

And as spring is coming back, I am too. My time of hibernating is over, again, and I’m carefully watching my own creative energy take up more space in me than it has in a long time. I say carefully, because I know it easily turns from flow to flood, drowning the little boat I’m trying to navigate the ocean in. So I’m repeating, to myself and to you, my dear reader, follower, customer or friend, that ‘careful’ is the word to take by hand. One step at a time. Nothing good gets away.

The waxing gibbous moon of March 17, playing hide and seek between wisps of white clouds.

The waxing gibbous moon of March 17, playing hide and seek between wisps of white clouds.

I have decided to stick with the equinoxes and solstices as the basis for my shop openings. There will be more openings of course, but these four celestial events seem fitting to use as a cutter for my creative year. We all know that one season follows on the other, but somehow it’s easy to forget - that spring will come after a grey and dreary winter, and that it will once again be winter after summer and autumn have passed. And for the first equinox of this new year, I will focus on the Halo pendant. It’s one of my personal favourites and working with it feels both soothing and strengthening. The circular shape lies lightly in my hand and the process of transforming half of it into a rough and darkened version of the bright and smooth original form is powerful. I hope they can mark something for you too, a shift or a cycle or the easy but hard truth that without darkness… yes, yes, you know it; no light.

The two circles of the Halo pendant - half of each is hammered and oxidised to a rough, dark grey finish, while the other half is shiny smooth silver. Entirely hand made from 100 % recycled Argentium silver, hallmarked with LHL and 925 stamps.

The two circles of the Halo pendant - half of each is hammered and oxidised to a rough, dark grey finish, while the other half is shiny smooth silver. Entirely hand made from 100 % recycled Argentium silver, hallmarked with LHL and 925 stamps.

There will also be the very first and very few Barkskin rings. I am currently on a collision course with my gold for some reason that’s completely above me, and have now a whole set of rings with a slight colour variation. One half redder, one half more yellow - or one third in some of them, or even less. Only visible in clear daylight, these rings have had me question my eyesight more than once. So they aren’t perfect. Something must have gone “wrong” in the process - I might have used the wrong solder, the wrong gold alloy, contaminated and compromised the metal in some chemistry based, unknown-to-me way. And you know what? I decided they indeed are perfect. They are not as I originally intended, and I do not understand why they aren’t, but I’m going to fly with that. I hope you will too.

Let’s say this is as much of a rainbow as gold gets! Plus, nothing makes you feel more like a troll than wearing a full stack of gold rings…

Let’s say this is as much of a rainbow as gold gets! Plus, nothing makes you feel more like a troll than wearing a full stack of gold rings…

The Barkskin stacking rings are based on the Dungeons and Dragons spell Barkskin, which druids can cast to enhance their natural armor (since they can’t wear metal armour, because druids, because D&D, because… I’m not making any sense if you haven’t played D&D but that’s fine! You should try it!). I played a lot (a LOT lot) Baldur’s gate when I was younger and I’ve been wanting to do a Barkskin something for a long time. So this is it - three silver rings textured to call on the bark of the grained and tectonical oak tree, the jarred bark of the rowan tree and the silvery smooth bark of the beech tree. Plus and 18 K heavily textured troll ring, I mean gold ring, to mix it up.

The Barkskin stacking ring set - from the bottom up; oak, gold, beech and rowan.

The Barkskin stacking ring set - from the bottom up; oak, gold, beech and rowan.

I have made just a few Barkskin sets but think these might be better of as made to order items in the future. If you know you want one in a specific size, please shoot me an e-mail at demonstrate@elkmarketmetal.com and I’ll out you on my list.

I also have a few March pendants ready!

I also have a few March pendants ready!

There may also be a mirror pendant or two…

There may also be a mirror pendant or two…

Until then - see you on Wednesday, March 20, at around 21.30 CET.

Lotta H LöthgrenComment