I have adored the stunning animal rings made by Maine silversmith James Yesberger since the 1980s. I first discovered his work when I lived in the USA in the 1980s. His rings are solid and heavy (about 16 – 20g per ring), which I really like because I like weight and heft on my fingers. Heavy chunky jewellery is not for everyone I know, but I am not a fan of delicate dainty jewellery. One of my rings, bought in India, weighs almost 40g! It is an articulated tiger ring that wraps over the tip of my middle finger and goes all the way back over my knuckles. Not an everyday ring in other words…
My favourite Yesberger rings are the animal ones. He has such a feel for animals – cats in particular – and there are always little extra details on these rings such as cute little kitty paw pads, hippo teeth, fur on the underside of the leopard and (my favourite), a prince on the other side of the frog! Apart from his sleeping cats, his hippos always have such great expressions on their faces!
Unfortunately, because James Yesberger no longer produces rings, they are becoming increasingly rare, harder to find in good condition, and the prices have rocketed.
Here is the frog and prince one. It is my absolute favourite. As I mentioned though, pristine examples are becoming harder to find, and in many cases you find that the prince inside the frog has had all his coat details rubbed off. They are also often missing the artist’s mark and the hallmark.
And some of the other animals.