a plant that grows on a heath
(like my namesake flower, Erica).
an artisan who shapes metal
(like the ancestors who gave me the surname Hammerschmidt).
I find heather-flowers very beautiful. Delicate and refined, they are made up of many small pieces, coming together to form a complex and intricate whole.
My favorite jewelry is the same way.
I love jewelry that reminds people of fantasy movies, of fairy tales and Renaissance festivals. The jewelry I love is detailed and sparkling, and evokes thoughts of flowers and vines and new leaves. Let me share it with you.
From challenged child to fanciful artist
I was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome as a kid in the 90’s. I have many obsessive fascinations. In college I majored in both German and Spanish. I also accidentally minored in art, just by taking so many art classes for the fun of it. I love growing plants, keeping pet birds, and doing all sorts of creative projects.
When I was a kid at summer camp, there was an art activity that involved making rings out of beads and wire. It took a long time and a lot of frustration for me to grasp the process, but once I did, I felt like doing it forever.
As a jeweler, my sense of aesthetics leans more toward fantasy than science fiction, but I still love to incorporate geological oddities like meteorites and fossils into my pieces, entangling them in shiny wire and surrounding them with sparkly gems… because who says space rocks and prehistoric monsters can’t be pretty and feminine too?
Over the years I have fine-tuned my jewelry-making process a lot, and made up many new techniques out of my own imagination. I’ve sold at a Renaissance Festival and several science-fiction and fantasy conventions.
Besides making and selling jewelry, I have created a webcomic, a memoir about my life, a science fiction novel, and a collection of short stories. My husband John Ricker and I give speeches about our experiences to schools and support groups.
I also have an Etsy shop:
and a website about my books, speeches and other projects:
And check my calendar for times when I’ll be selling at local art events!