Blackthorn pendant


For this exhibition, Abbie Dixon used a Blackthorn leaf to create a wax model which was then cast in sterling silver by the lost wax process.

Blackthorn grows in the hedgerows close to her home and is widespread in Ireland. There are many old stories regarding the Blackthorn. It is considered a symbol of protection and overcoming obstacles. In Celtic folklore Blackthorn is associated with Cailleach the goddess of winter, who emerges at Samhain (Halloween) to take over the year.

To suggest some autumnal colouration, Abbie has applied 22ct gold leaf by the Korean Keum Boo technique. The gold becomes permanently bonded to the silver by heat and burnishing. For further colour variation the silver has been oxidised.

Artist Bio

Abbie Dixon is a self-taught jewellery designer/maker working from her home just outside Belfast. She studied graphic design at the University of Ulster Belfast however she realised she was much happier at a workbench.

Her jewellery collection explores plant growth – the shapes and forms that occur in nature. She finds inspiration on frequent forest walks and is particularly excited by small details such as mosses and lichens.

Fossils and natural mineral formations, which often have a plant like structure, also fascinate her. She has always found these organic shapes appealing and enjoys finding ways to create them in metal.

Abbie crafts little jewellery sculptures in wax before they are cast in precious metal by the lost wax process.