Gabrie’l Gonzalez-Bartels
Jewelry, Metal

Lafayette, LA

My goal is to create jewelry that shines a light on the beauty that Mother Earth offers. Each piece is One of a Kind, created with intention using hand chosen natural stones and inspired by nature. The creative process brings joy to my soul and ends with not only a piece of jewelry, but a piece of the earth that holds energy and power for the wearer.

All pieces include carefully chosen stones in their raw form. I also use natural stone cabochons and sea shells. After designing each piece, I begin with raw materials such as sterling silver, brass and copper sheet metal and wire that I cut, solder, grind and polish to create rings, cuffs and pendant that are each a home to a brilliant piece of the earth. Most pieces are finished with hammering for texture, hand stamped and hand aged.

Most of my copper/gold/rhodium work is made through the process of Electroforming or Electroplating, meaning the stone is plated onto a handcrafted ring, cuff or necklace – creating a unique and one of a kind setting for the gemstone. This process takes about 24-48 hours for each piece from beginning to end. It starts with cutting, molding, soldering and hammering a base for the stone setting such as a ring shank or cuff bracelet. The stones are then attached to the base with epoxy, allowed to dry, then a hard drying clay is used to mold the shape of the setting around the stones. Once the clay dries and is filed to the desired look, the stone is sealed. I then paint conductive copper paint onto the piece where I wish for the copper to plate. When the piece is ready, it is suspended into an electroforming solution with a copper source and connected to a plating rectifier. the amps and volts are adjusted according to the surface area to be plated. The piece stays in the bath and is monitored and constantly adjusted for 6-124 hours depending on the desired copper thickness. Once finished, the piece is neutralized, grinded, polished and hand aged for a raw and natural look or followed by Gold or Rhodium plating.

Everyday is an adventure as I learn more about metal working and the art of jewelry making. I truly believe in the energy provided by nature through the stones and consider them my inspiration for every piece I create.

I, Gabrie’l Gonzalez-Bartels, am a Registered Nurse and graduate of UT School of Nursing. I moved to southern Louisiana from Austin, Texas 8 years ago to reconnect with my heritage. Since then the culture of this place has taken root in my soul. It is here that I found my inspiration and passion to teach myself the art of jewelry making and start A Rolling Stone Jewels.

I learned about the healing power of crystals and stones at a young age from my grandfather, Timoteo. When he passed, my parents had a necklace made for me using one of his Amethyst that they tumbled, cut and polished. It is my dearest possession and has inspired me to create my own natural stone jewelry, in hopes of sharing the beauty and power of Mother Earth with others.