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Your Jewelry Fairy Godmother™
Estelle Vernon is a resident artist at the Torpedo Factory Art Center, which opened in 1974 on the waterfront in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.
Her jewelry journey began in high school in the late ’60s when she took an art metals class. She made rings, chains and even cut a few cabochon stones. Estelle’s college education steered her to a career in Audiology. Still, her passion for metalsmithing continued as she learned more advanced jewelry-making techniques and worked hard to perfect her craft.
In 1987, Estelle was introduced to the keum boo technique by her professor Komelia Okim, who was primarily responsible for teaching the Korean technique to artisans in the US.
Keum boo involves applying an ultra-thin piece of 24k gold to silver (and sometimes iron, steel, or copper) with heat and pressure to produce a permanent diffusion bond.
“I love the contrast between oxidized silver and keum boo. The gold really “pops” when the silver is darkened.”
Estelle’s work is influenced by nature and the unique textures she’s captured in her photographs while traveling. Through etching, texturing, and keum boo, or incorporating pearls and gemstones, Estelle can create elegant, modern pieces that are distinctive and versatile.
“My process is very detail-oriented and maybe even a bit obsessive. Excellent craftsmanship is non-negotiable for me. I want the finished piece to be as perfect as I can make it.”
Honorable Mention, Washington Guild of Goldsmiths, 2018- Biannual Show | Pine Needle Shell Pendant
Honorable Mention, Washington Guild of Goldsmiths, 2018- Biannual Show | Pine Needle Leaf Pendant
Honorable Mention, Washington Guild of Goldsmiths, 2018- Biannual Show | Pine Needle Pendant
Creative Craft Council 28th Biennial Exhibition, June 2011 | 2nd Place in Metal
Yellowstone Pendant with Keum Boo
Honorable Mention Fusion, 2001
Confetti Brooch-PMC with 24k Keum Boo Accents
Equal Merit Award the Art League Student Faculty Show, 2000 Pearls in Motion- Ring
Equal Merit Award the Art League Student Faculty Show, 1999
Fine Silver PMC Pendant with 24k Keum Boo Accents
ESTELLE VERNON DESIGNS
METALLUM at THE TORPEDO FACTORY
105 North Union St
Alexandria, VA, USA