A while back, my mom gave me her diamond engagement ring. She said she wanted me to have it now so that I could enjoy it sooner than later. I was very touched, of course, but given that it was several sizes too large for any of my fingers there was no way I could wear it. So…it sat around in a box for over a year. Clearly I wasn’t enjoying it as my mother had intended, and I’m sure she was quietly wondering if her gift would ever see the light of day again.
Since I’m not really a ring person, I decided to turn my heirloom into a pendant and I knew just where I wanted to have it done: the Christensen Heller Gallery in Oakland. I love going into their store on College Avenue, because it’s cozy and intimate, their display cases are filled with lots of distinctive jewelry, and their staff is incredibly easy to work with.
When I sat down with gemologist Baird Heffron, I asked him to design something simple, elegant and not too pricey. He not only satisfied me on all counts, he and Jan Christensen Heller, the owner, were able to use some of the settings from the original ring, which made my pendant even more affordable. Angela Prieto stepped in to help me select a chain, and Baird even did an appraisal of the completed necklace. What more could a woman ask for?
Whether you come to the Christensen Heller Gallery to snap up a pair of earrings you saw in the window or to order a custom-designed piece, these very talented professionals will take care of you. They’re knowledgeable, patient, and will make your whole experience a pleasure.
Your wedding day is a perfect excuse to breathe new life in your family’s heirloom jewels. For inspiration to help you turn your “something old” into “something new,” check out their gallery.