Susan Mahlstedt

There is a joy in hand fabricating with metals. Solving technical challenges in order to create the look and vision I want keeps me constantly intrigued. My current inspirations come from the forms and textures of leaves, sand dollars, shells, bamboo and pebbles combined or individually.

Some of the techniques used to create texture are carving with burrs and stamping with different shapes of steel stamps. Materials include sterling silver, 18k and 14k gold with precious and semi precious stones as accents. The finishes include depletion gilding (a heating process that makes the silver a white color), oxidizing, satin and polish highlights. I spend a lot of time with a design so that it flows or has the shape I’m looking for. While using a variety of textures, patterns and finishes, I hope to create unique jewelry that the wearer finds graceful yet strong, artistic, and comfortable to wear.