Posts

Graduation Gift Ideas

graduation gift ideas

Graduation Gift Ideas

With summer rapidly approaching, or at least it feels like that in Charleston due to the rising temperature, graduation season will be here soon at the end of spring. Unfortunately due to the coronavirus crisis, many traditional graduation commencement ceremonies have been cancelled or postponed. However, even with the absence of a cap and gown event, giving a special gift to celebrate your graduate’s achievement is still very necessary. My silver objects, jewelry, and men’s accessories are very popular graduation gifts, so in this Blog post I have highlighted some of my favorite graduation gift ideas for both guys and gals. The majority of these quality, lasting pieces can be hand engraved for a personal, memorable touch.

Graduation Gift Ideas for Her

silver cuff bracelet hammered silver bracelet torc jewelry
Silver Torc Twist Cuff Bracelet I by Kaminer Haislip

A young lady would appreciate for everyday wear a simple pendant, delicate stud earrings, or elegant cuff or bangle bracelet, especially if she will have a professional job that requires a more conservative attire style.

Silver Torc Pendant III by Kaminer Haislip

My pendants come with the choice of a 16″, 18″, or 20″ length silver cable chain.

silver oyster pendant oyster jewelry charleston
Silver Oyster Shell Pendant by Kaminer Haislip

Bangles and cuff bracelets are also a nice jewelry gift, because she can stack them with other bracelets.

hammered silver bangle bracelet graduation gift ideas for her
Silver Torc Bracelet II by Kaminer Haislip

All of my bangles come in two sizes, medium and large, and can be custom sized. My cuff bracelets are adjustable and are flexible to form over the wrist for personalized comfort. Additionally, one size fits most.

hammered silver stud earrings torc earrings graduation gift ideas for her
Silver Torc Stud Earrings by Kaminer Haislip

Simple, yet elegant stud earrings are always a great gift for anyone, because they can be worn everyday for a delicate touch and are conservative in style for a professional environment.

oyster shell earrings silver oyster earrings jacket style earrings versatile jewelry
Silver Oyster Shell Double Earrings in
Small (pictured) or Large
by Kaminer Haislip

My jacket style Oyster Shell Double Earrings are very popular, because they can be worn as just stud (small option) or post (large option) earrings for minimal style or with the back component added for a statement look. These earrings transition effortlessly from day to night.

jacket earrings stud earring post earring
Deconstructed silver Oyster Shell Double Earring
by Kaminer Haislip
hammered silver dish silver torc earrings post earrings graduation gift ideas for her
Silver Poppy Bowl (small) and Torc Post Earrings
by Kaminer Haislip

A lovely silver dish to hold small items, pretty silver vase she can put flowers in for her dresser or vanity, or an elegant silver box to store jewelry or other small things all make thoughtful graduation gifts for her.

silver vase etched silver cloud design learning to fly hollowware
Silver Learning to Fly Vase by Kaminer Haislip

The etched design for this silver vase from my Learning to Fly Series was inspired by clouds seen from a plane receding into the distance. The concept relates to graduation by the metaphors of flying the nest, being independent, and moving forward.

silver boxes bird box chorus handcrafted silver box
Silver Chorus boxes by Kaminer Haislip

My round silver boxes come in a variety of sizes, so you can add to her collection as her life progresses.

Graduation Gift Ideas for Him

oval silver cufflinks engravable cufflinks hand engraving graduation gift ideas for him
Silver Oval Cufflinks by Kaminer Haislip

Cufflinks add sophistication to a man’s attire and are a creative way he can express his personal style. Jewelry options tend to be limited for men, so cufflinks are a fashionable accessory to spruce up his look. Most of my cufflinks can be personalized with hand engraving and custom initial cufflinks are also a unique, thoughtful gift option.

initial silver cufflinks personalized cufflinks custom cufflinks
Silver Initial Cufflinks by Kaminer Haislip

Contact me directly at kaminer@kaminerhaislip.com to commission custom, initial cufflinks if you do not see your letter in my Men’s Accessories Shop category.

silver collar stays hand engraving graduation gift ideas
Silver Collar Stays by Kaminer Haislip

Silver collar stays are another professional gift idea that also can be personalized with hand engraving.

A silver box is a very useful gift for a man, because he can put it on his dresser to store cufflinks and other small items or on his desk. My husband has several silver boxes he uses and it is a classy way to store things and keep your desk tidy.

etched silver boxes graduation gift ideas for him
Silver Learning to Fly Boxes by Kaminer Haislip

These silver boxes are from the same Learning to Fly Series as the vase highlighted above and the same metaphors apply to them as well. Also, just as with the Chorus boxes also featured, they come in a variety of sizes, so as he moves forward in life, you can add to his collection.

Hand engraving on top of round silver box for a recent graduation gift for him

Visit my website Hand Engraving page for more engraving samples and styles as well as pricing and details.

silver dish silver oyster dish contemporary silver design charleston
Silver Oyster Dish by Kaminer Haislip

A silver dish like my Oyster Dish above (available in two sizes) is wonderful for a dresser or desk as well. They can be used to hold small items, such as change or keys, and function as a pen tray.

silver tumbler contemporary silver cup hand engraving
Silver Sounding Series Tumbler by Kaminer Haislip

A final graduation gift idea is to start him on a collection of silver cups. My Sounding Series cups come in two sizes with the shorter tumbler cup shown above and a taller, Mint Julep sized beaker shown below. Both styles can be hand engraved to commemorate each date he receives one. I have several clients who have started special people on collections and it is fun to hear for what each occasion the cup is gifted. Many have started out as graduation gifts and progressed to wedding gifts.

silver beaker silver cup silver tumbler graduation gift ideas for him
Silver Sounding Tumblers and Beakers
by Kaminer Haislip

Hopefully I have given you a wide variety of thoughtful, special gift ideas to commemorate your graduate’s momentous achievement! I received a lovely array of beautiful silver gifts for each of my graduations and think fondly of the person who generously gifted it to me when I see it in my home or wear it. They bring back wonderful memories, which is the purpose of a lasting gift. Silver is just that!

Church Communion Tray Commission

church communion tray commission custom design flagon chalice
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography

Church Communion Tray Commission

In October 2019 the silver communion tray pictured above was dedicated to First Presbyterian Church in Aiken, SC. The entire process from designing it to making it to the dedication was a great experience I so enjoyed! This Blog post highlights this very special commission project for a church my family has been members of for four generations.

silver tray commission custom design flagon chalice
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography

The church contacted me in the spring of 2019 and asked if I could make a custom, silver communion tray for them. The current tray they were using was not the right size or shape for the communion bread loaf, so they needed a more appropriate, oval shaped tray. During the communion ceremony the church also uses a silver chalice and flagon, or pitcher, both shown above, as well as small round silver bread trays to pass the bread throughout the congregation. All contributed to the design elements incorporated into the tray.

ecclesiastical church silver communion tray

I worked very closely with the church’s committee on the design and met with them to discuss the project in depth and look at the existing church silver together. One extremely important item was the size and shape of the bread, because it would determine those elements of the tray. I did several rounds of drawings with numerous options for them to choose from. The existing silver pieces were so gorgeous they provided a lot of beautiful design inspiration!

silver tray design drawing design rendering designer maker
Top view drawing of tray by Kaminer Haislip

The drawing above was the final rendering of the top view. I also provided other renderings of additional angles of the tray and all were drawn to scale of the actual object.

silver communion tray first presbyterian church aiken sc church silver
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography

The chalice and some of the small, round bread trays have a bead rim in their design, so that element influenced the bead rim on the tray. Both the chalice and the flagon have very curved, flared shapes as part of their surface design that include on the chalice a chased floral pattern and on the flagon around the spout, so the tray handle design is a combination of those two motifs. The tray plate has a very slight curve, so when seen from the side angle it looks like angel wings lifting up. The dimensions of the tray plate were based on the size of the bread loaf used for communion.

silver communion tray bead rim

The chalice and flagon both have an interesting past and during the Civil War they were hidden from the Union soldiers in a cistern. During both the Revolutionary War and Civil War, silver was frequently plundered from churches and private residences. Now it is not uncommon for historic silver pieces from the American South to show up in auctions in the American Northeast and England.

The chalice was made by Rogers Brothers Manufacturing in Hartford, CT between the dates of 1853-1861 and has the date 1856 hand engraved on the front of it. The flagon was made by Reed & Barton in Taunton, Massachusetts with the date unknown. Reed & Barton was founded in 1824 by silversmiths Henry Reed and Charles Barton, so we know if was made after 1824. I am still researching what the numbers stamped on the bottom mean and likely they hold the key to the date it was made.

ecclesiastic silver church silver bread tray

Once the design was finalized and agreed upon, I created the tray out of sterling silver sheet and wire. It was an extremely challenging piece to make! The dimensions are 15.5″ length by 9″ width, so it is a very large and heavy object. The shape and curve to the tray plate required a lot of attention to detail and many rounds of hammering to get it in the correct shallow curve. The bead rim was a careful application on top of the flat, rectangular rim. In order for the slightly curved tray to stay stationary on the alter, I added a silver foot. The handles were the finishing touch to a very complex design.

oval silver tray bead rim

The interior and exterior of the tray has a high shine, mirror finish, which to achieve over that large of a surface required many, many hours of sanding and polishing. The end result is stunning and worth every minute of time!

silver communion tray First Presbyterian Church Aiken, SC
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography

The perfect finishing touch was the gorgeous hand engraving on the back done by the very talented Kristina McClure, the only hand engraver in Charleston.

silver tray hand engraved inscription
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography
silver tray hand engraving commemoration
Photo credit: Joanna Hamilton of JLHamilton Photography

The inscription commemorates the dedication of the tray in celebration of First Presbyterian Church being located on Barnwell Avenue in Aiken, SC for fifty years. The worship service on October 27, 2019 was the church’s Jubilee celebration and the tray was dedicated then. It was a lovely service and a special day enjoyed by many. It was an honor to have created this silver tray to commemorate this momentous occasion. I love the idea that it will be used and enjoyed for many generations past mine and likely by my future family members.

script hand engraving
Hand engraving by Kristina McClure
hand engraved silver tray
Hand engraving by Kristina McClure

If you are interested in commissioning a custom object or jewelry piece from me, then please check out my website Commission page that has examples of drawings and finished pieces. My Commission Policy outlines the details of commissioning me to make something unique and special for you. Thank you for your interest in my work!

Night of 1000 Lights – December 2019

night of 1000 lights silver lucky horseshoe christmas ornament holiday decoration

Night of 1000 Lights – Downtown Aiken, SC

Kaminer Haislip is participating in the annual Night of 1000 Lights in historic downtown Aiken, SC on Thursday, December 12 from 6-8pm. Sponsoring businesses will stay open late, thousands of gorgeous luminaries will line the streets of downtown Aiken, and there will be wide variety of fun holiday activities taking place. This exciting event, organized by the Aiken Downtown Development Association, is a tradition not to be missed!

True Value Aiken SC

During the event, Kaminer’s handcrafted silver jewelry, functional objects, and Christmas ornaments will be displayed for sale at her family’s business, True Value Hardware & Appliance, located at 121 Laurens Street.  Stop by True Value to see her work and enjoy some holiday cheer!

aiken

http://www.visitaikensc.com/whattodo/detail/aiken_downtown_development_association_adda

http://www.downtownaiken.com/

Silver Showing with The Charleston Silver Lady – November 2019

The Charleston Silver Lady silver exhibition Lexington SC holiday shopping

Silver Showing with The Charleston Silver Lady

Dawn Corley, also known as The Charleston Silver Lady, is an antiques historian and expert on silver. She will have a special showing of Kaminer Haislip’s contemporary silver objects and jewelry at her Lexington, SC location on Thursday, November 21 from 4:30pm-6:30pm. In addition to Kaminer’s work, she will have on display antique objects and silver pieces from her own private collection.

The event will be hosted at 212 East Main Street, Lexington, SC 29072. Please use the side door as a private entrance. Parking is available for guests in a parking garage across the street as well as at a BB&T bank next door.

This fun holiday shopping event will be very shiny and bright!

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 Travels to Museum in Freiberg, Germany

schoonhoven silver award 2018

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 Travels to Museum in Freiberg, Germany

The international silver object (no jewelry) exhibition Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018, which Kaminer Haislip’s silver vessel Gradual Erosion is included, will travel to the City and Mining Museum in Freiberg, Germany. The exhibition began at The Netherlands Silver Museum and was on exhibition from December 2018 – May 2019.

The exhibition will be on display at the City and Mining Museum in Freiberg, Germany from June 29 – October, 2019. Learn more about their showing of this exceptional exhibition on their website.

etched silver vessel

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 includes a wide variety of silversmiths from all over the world and its goal was to inspire artists to test and explore the boundaries of their traditional art and craft. The Netherlands Silver Museum sought objects that bear a direct relationship with the museum’s policy of stimulating the exploration of new technologies and uses, and innovative art forms. Innovation, as envisioned in the Award’s present edition, centers on the rejuvenation of past, time-honored techniques and on the preservation of this heritage through injecting dynamic new life into the art of silversmithing.

silver vase

The international Schoohnoven Silver Award exhibition began in 2001 and 2018 is the seventh edition of this unique silversmithing focused exhibition. Kaminer Haislip’s silver and ebony teapot Perched Flight was included in the 2009 exhibition Poetry in Silver, so she is excited and honored to exhibit again with her new silver vessel Gradual Erosion.

etched silver vessel

Gradual Erosion is currently available for sale, but will not be available for delivery until after the exhibition travels to two other European countries and ends in September 2019. Gradual Erosion will be returned to Kaminer Haislip after the exhibition and you can contact her directly for details at kaminer@kaminerhaislip.com.

To learn more about Gradual Erosion, visit its product page on this website’s Shop at https://www.kaminerhaislip.com/silver-art-jewelry-baby/gradual-erosion-silver/

Handcrafted Silver Spoons

Kaminer Haislip’s silver Flight of Fancy Serving Spoon

Handcrafted Silver Spoons

Serving up silver spoons for this Blog post! Since silversmithing has become an obscure craft, I have decided to write a series of posts that feature various traditional silversmithing processes I use to create my silver designs. As often as I am asked how I make my pieces, I have come to realize how little most people know about silversmithing. I took my first jewelry and silversmithing course over twenty years ago, so it has become extremely normal to me since I have done it practically every day since then!

The majority of the time, people only see my finished works and not the process, so they have no idea the amount of time, labor and skill that goes into making them. Through sharing some of my silversmithing techniques, I hope to give some insight into what it takes to craft my functional works of art.

silversmithing hammers jewelry hammers silversmith workshop jewelry studio
A selection of Kaminer Haislip’s silversmithing and jewelry hammers.

My journey to becoming a silversmith began long before my first college course and you can read about my background in detail on a former Blog post titled “How did you get into silversmithing?”. During my BFA studies at Winthrop University under Alfred Ward, an internationally acclaimed English silversmith, the first functional object I made was a silver spoon with laminated ebony handle. The spoon form has much significance to my functional work and I have continued to explore it since that first creation so many years ago. To view a selection of spoons I have made over the course of my career and the aforementioned first spoon visit my website Portfolio Spoons page.

silversmithing tools silversmith stakes metalsmithing workshop steel stake
Several of Kaminer’s steel silversmithing stakes

As covered in my previous Blog post on my forged silver cheese knife, all of my objects begin as sterling silver sheet and wire. For hollowing and forming silver sheet into functional objects, I hammer it over steel stakes that are the precise curve I need for an item, such as a silver spoon. The stake is held in a sturdy steel vise as shown below.

spoon stake silver spoon silversmithing technique handcrafted silver spoon
Spoon stake in vise

I use a rawhide mallet to form the spoon bowl, because it does not stretch the silver or leave marks in the surface.

traditional silversmithing technique handcrafting a silver spoon silversmith studio
Silver spoon bowl being formed over steel stake
sterling silver spoon charleston rice spoon serving spoon

Once the spoon bowl shape is formed, I planish it with a steel hammer to set the form precisely and work harden the metal, so it has strength when used to serve food.

Kaminer Haislip Charleston silversmith contemporary silver functional art
Silversmith Kaminer Haislip planishing the silver spoon bowl.

With the planishing technique I use small, light overlapping blows as shown up close below.

silver spoon bowl planish silversmith hammer silversmithing technique
Overlapping planishing hammer marks on the silver surface

The planishing process is one of my favorite silversmithing techniques! It requires focus, rhythm, and precision to hammer around and around consistently over the entire surface. I really enjoy planishing my silver spoons, but a coffeepot or teapot is an extensive challenge that I so revel in!

The two spoons highlighted in this Blog post are from my Flight of Fancy Series in which the handle design was inspired by the shape of a bird’s wing. The serving spoon (first image) has a traditional serving spoon length handle, but the Charleston Rice Spoon has a longer handle. The silver Charleston Rice Spoon, derived from the English Stuffing Spoon, historically had a long handle. During the 18th and 19th centuries rice was an immensely important crop to Charleston’s economy and the rice spoon was created due to it. My contemporary design is based on the historic form and gives a nod to tradition while still looking forward.

Both spoon styles are very popular wedding gifts, so be sure to check them out in my website Shop Home category. A handcrafted silver spoon certainly serves a purpose when stylishly entertaining!

Charleston Gallery Representation

Helena Fox Fine Art Charleston art gallery
silver coffeepot with purple heart wood handle
This silver and purple heart wood coffeepot is now sold exclusively through
Helena Fox Fine Art.

Charleston Gallery Representation

I am extremely excited to announce Helena Fox Fine Art is now representing my handcrafted silver designs in their stunning downtown Charleston art gallery! They are now carrying on an on going basis a curated selection of my silver hollowware, flatware, home objects, and jewelry. Some items, such as the silver coffeepot shown above, will be sold exclusively through them. Noted on my website Shop are those items, so you must get in contact with them or visit their gorgeous art gallery in order to purchase them.

They are formally welcoming me on Friday, March 1 from 5-8pm during the Charleston Gallery Association artwalk. During that event and on Saturday, March 2 from 11am-4pm, a wider selection of my silver home objects and jewelry will be shown. I hope to see you at one of those events!

Helena Fox Fine Art historic downtown Charleston art gallery South of Broad
Helena Fox Fine Art is located in the historic South of Broad neighborhood in downtown Charleston, SC

Helena Fox Fine Art
106-A Church Street
Charleston, SC 29401
www.helenafoxfineart.com

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 – The Netherlands Silver Museum

netherlands silver museum

schoonhoven silver award 2018

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 – The Netherlands Silver Museum

Kaminer Haislip’s silver vessel Gradual Erosion was accepted into the international silver object (no jewelry) exhibition Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018!

The exhibition is hosted by The Netherlands Silver Museum in Schoonhoven and opened December 7, 2018. Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 will be on display for three months before traveling to cities in Belgium and Germany until November 2019.

etched silver vessel

Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 includes a wide variety of silversmiths from all over the world and its goal was to inspire artists to test and explore the boundaries of their traditional art and craft. The Netherlands Silver Museum sought objects that bear a direct relationship with the museum’s policy of stimulating the exploration of new technologies and uses, and innovative art forms. Innovation, as envisioned in the Award’s present edition, centers on the rejuvenation of past, time-honored techniques and on the preservation of this heritage through injecting dynamic new life into the art of silversmithing.

silver vase

The international Schoohnoven Silver Award exhibition began in 2001 and 2018 is the seventh edition of this unique silversmithing focused exhibition. Kaminer Haislip’s silver and ebony teapot Perched Flight was included in the 2009 exhibition Poetry in Silver, so she is excited and honored to exhibit again with her new silver vessel Gradual Erosion.

etched silver vessel

Gradual Erosion is currently available for sale, but will not be available for delivery until after the exhibition travels to two other European countries and ends in November 2019. Gradual Erosion will be returned to Kaminer Haislip after the exhibition and you can contact her directly for details at kaminer@kaminerhaislip.com.

To learn more about Gradual Erosion, visit its product page on this website’s Shop at https://www.kaminerhaislip.com/silver-art-jewelry-baby/gradual-erosion-silver/

To learn more about The Netherlands Silver Museum or Schoonhoven Silver Award 2018 visit the two links below.

https://zilvermuseum.com/en/

https://zilvermuseum.com/en/4919-2/

Night of 1000 Lights – December 2018

Night of 1000 Lights

Night of 1000 Lights – Downtown Aiken, SC

Kaminer Haislip is participating in the annual Night of 1000 Lights in historic downtown Aiken, SC on Thursday, December 6 from 6-8pm. Sponsoring businesses will stay open late, thousands of gorgeous luminaries will line the streets of downtown Aiken, and there will be wide variety of fun holiday activities taking place. This exciting event, organized by the Aiken Downtown Development Association, is a tradition not to be missed!

True Value Aiken SC

During the event, Kaminer’s handcrafted silver jewelry, functional objects, and Christmas ornaments will be displayed for sale at her family’s business, True Value Hardware & Appliance, located at 121 Laurens Street.  Stop by True Value to see her work and enjoy some holiday cheer!

aiken

http://www.visitaikensc.com/whattodo/detail/aiken_downtown_development_association_adda

http://www.downtownaiken.com/

Helena Fox Fine Art – Charleston, SC

helena fox fine art

silver oyster bracelet

 

Helena Fox Fine Art – Makers Market

Kaminer Haislip’s silver jewelry, functional objects, and Christmas ornaments will be exhibited for sale at Helena Fox Fine Art for their first Makers Market Friday, November 30 and Saturday, December 1 from 11am-4pm. Shop this special gallery event for unique, handmade holiday gifts!

Located South of Broad in historic, downtown Charleston, SC, Helena Fox Fine Art specializes in fine American representational art featuring artists from around the country.

106-A Church Street
Charleston, SC 29401

www.helenafoxfineart.com

Portfolio Items