​​​Wear a Piece of the Past

Artist Statement

Mary-Ann Wood

Many children are fascinated with fancy dinnerware and tea sets, and I was no exception.
I always wanted to help set the table for Sunday and holiday dinners with my grandmothers’ “best china” and silver. It was then I started my personal collection of china.

In later years I started to play with cups and saucers in a different way. I had a lot of broken pieces, and wanted to do something with the pretty designs on them.

Through a lot of trial and error, I taught myself how to cut the plates, carving out the bits I liked most. Not satisfied with simply making broken-looking shards, I concentrated on enhancing the intricate details of each pattern. I was hooked on the challenge!

So there I was, with piles of beautiful little designs cut from my damaged china. But what to do with them? I decided to design them into wearable jewelry.

This all started in 1997. My work has become more refined over the years, and my jewelry selection has steadily grown. I strive to add new items to the DinnerWear Jewelry collection, keeping it fresh.

Now I am always hunting for new patterns. I look for the most variety in floral motifs and color themes, and I want to represent as many countries as possible.

I love to take old items and re-purpose them- bringing the past to the present. The older the dinnerware is the more I enjoy it! I am always checking out the placement of the ridges, interesting borders, and cool looking cup handles.

Oh yes...everyone asks how it is done. The process involves many tools - different ones used for cutting different materials. These include saws, grinders, files, and drills. The process is delicate and can be slow. Each piece is cleaned in between steps of hand carving, and final detailing enhances each piece before it becomes jewelry.