“Let the Circle be Unbroken”

~ my personal collection of organic, hand carved  jewelry and adornments~

~  wandering monk’s new shop on Etsy ~

~my Elk antler jewelry and adornments are listed there~

              “Let the Circle be Unbroken” is the complete recycle of all the Elk & Mule Deer sheds I use for a multitude of purposes. The first part of my “cycle” after initially finding them in early spring is for use with my bamboo fly rods I make. Then with all the pieces left from them I craft the items you see on this page. All these items are an attempt to portray the respect and values of the Culture that inspires them…the connection of man to” The Creation”…

            All my life I have had an interest in this remarkable part of Nature. The way they grow, their part in the lives of my favorite animals, and how they tell a story for years to come after the animals that grew them,  and discard them every spring to grow a new set.

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             Some Cultures give magical powers to the antlers of ungulate species  like Elk(Wapiti), Moose and Deer…for me its more of a secret thing I can touch, that normally is reserved for a very wild world. Elk are a totally majestic creature, ruling the Rocky Mountains & Great Plains for multiple millennia  with the Buffalo, Deer and Pronghorn among other creatures…revered by Native American Culture, and anyone that has experienced them in the wild is never the same. The awe inspiring “Bugle” of the adult male in autumn is a sound like no other in Nature…one when heard for the first time is never forgotten…the harbinger of a season change in the Rockies, and another part of the big cycle called the “Circle of Life”

~click here to hear a sample of this special cry of the wilderness~

             Like with my bamboo fly rods, the antler I carve by hand for the accents on them, has an even more prominent display with this collection. Everything here is done completely by hand, with only materials lending themselves for the natural beauty they hold intrinsically. From the sinew for the wraps, the elk & deer leather for the straps and of course the shed antlers I carve and polish to the final shapes and designs I come up with…

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~some pendants , medallions & earrings laying on my favorite elk jacket~

            When designing & crafting all these items I have tried to be as unique and original as possible, not intentionally copying anyone else’s work..but in this genre that is not entirely possible since Native Americans have been doing this for untold thousands of years…some of My Native friends and I collaborated on many of these items, and some I just let my own creative juices flow…most importantly being true and sincere in this all, unlike the flood of items made in china or similar sold at many of the shows & Pow-Wows I attend. Items that are strictly for commerce and have no connection to the respect of a culture or creation…I avoid any man made materials whenever possible , and like my bamboo rods all is done by hand with a lot of elbow grease…As with all my other items I offer on the site contacting me on the tab at the top of the pages will get us in touch, where I can answer any questions …thanks…wm

 

sun_5…after cutting, filing and polishing the antler rings by hand, then I cut & tie all the tassels with 7 twists of sinew and 3 knots to secure…then I attach a length of waxed hemp to place around your neck, or even as some have done, hang it on the front mirror of their vehicle…proving a pretty interesting statement to say the least!

 

Here is my Collection of handmade jewelry , adornments & some of my other art…all the elk antler adornments are cut, carved & polished  by myself from shed Elk and Deer antler…almost all the antlers I use come from the ranch in Colorado…8,000 feet above sea level in the middle of the ancestral migration routes of “Wapiti” (translates “white butt”  in Lakota Sioux) also called more commonly Elk…and the “Mule Deer” that also travels the same range. These are items I usually promote more on my road trips and shows I set up at…but decided to share them on my website as well now.

~scroll down to view all the items I make, and their prices~

 

rings_1~a diverse bunch of carved and polished elk antler rings~

 

  I like wearing and giving these sort of items myself since they are something a bit less of the ordinary, to say the least. They also reflect my own personal appreciation of Nature and “The Wild”… I have always looked forward to September in the Rockies and all the colors , sights and sounds that accompany that season…the sound of Bull Elk bugling while I am either fly fishing or just witnessing the incredible beauty of The Creation…this collection is something that shares some of those feelings, and I hope there is something here that will find a special spot for you too.

~I also make items on a custom order  basis for entirely unique items~

~I will be regularly posting new items as they are made~

 

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 ~the eye of the “Blood Moon” pendant viewed directly at the sun, even though its core is solid with resin, the sunlight passes through showing of all the incredible pores ~

                  Elk & Mule Deer grow their antlers every year from about April until the following March, when the drop or “shed” them…starting the cycle all over again. growing through the summer months and finally when they are full grown harden by September, and are an integral part of the mating rituals of these species.

 … I sign with my initials every one of the items I  create…

 

 

circle_2~the “blood moon” pendant’s has a smooth surface, but when exposed to light it glows!~

 

               I try and use every bit of these special finds my Yellow Lab “Dakota” and I hunt for every spring for either my Fly Rods, or other things folks can use. The way antler grows is very special…with the blood vessels feeding nutrients to for the “Bone” and then once the pr0cess of growth is completed they harden. The antlers have a covering of “velvet”, a furry substance that the deer or elk “rub off” on small saplings in preparation for the “rut”, their breeding season. the outer shell left after this rubbing is the exterior shell we all see, covered by an intricate network of  channels and galleries now hardened, that use to be the travel route of the enriching blood.

 

circle_3~ an elk blood moon pendant ($75)above an elk breastplate w/ teak & mule deer tassels ($ 185)~

 

                      If you look closely you can see the individual remnants of those channels you can see the intricate detail of the structure…when I carve the pieces I put up to three coats of clear resin to strengthen these inner walls, but also allow sunlight to pass through …more in the centers and gradually fading to the edges. This is most apparent in the larger “rounds”…and to lesser degree in the smaller branch sections.

 

After witnessing the recent “Blood Moon” this spring, I saw the close resemblance the large pendant pieces I make allow the same type of glow as the moon showed when in the shadow of the earth. In Native Culture the “Blood Moon” was a very powerful symbol, meaning some special event was about to happen…in” New Age ” & Biblical circles they both attribute a power to these events from different perspectives. Whatever your belief, it was and will be a spectacular occurrence taking place 3 more times over the next  18 months with a total eclipse of the Sun in the middle…this series of astronomical events has only take place a handful of times in modern history…each time was a monumental occasion to say the least ! the first one of this series left me in awe witnessing it, and I’m looking forward to the next!…

“all the heaven’s  shout, let the future begin!”

 

 

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 1. “oval elk pendant”…1 & 3/4″-1 &7/8” tall……$45

2.”tear drop elk pendant”…2-2 & 1/8″ tall……$55

3.”large elk oval”…2″ X 3″…….$75

4. “large elk oval” ( with tassels) …….$80

5.”large elk blood moon pendant”…2 &1/4 X 2 &1/2″…….$75

6.”large elk blood moon pendant” (with tassels)…….$80

~all pendants can come with either waxed hemp or leather straps and attachments~

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~closer view of elk blood moon pendants~

~ waxed hemp or elk leather straps…can come with or without lower tassels~

 

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 ~closer view of large elk ovals~

 

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~elk breastplate with osage orange tassels & matching ear rings~

$170….w/o earrings $145

 

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 ~closer view of the osage orange ear ring tassels~

 

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 ~elk breastplate w/ mule deer ear ring tassels $185~

~w/ matching mule deer ear rings $150~

 

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~ darker version of the one above~

 

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~swoop style ear rings~

7. matched elk “swoop” $55~

8. matched mule deer “swoop” $40~

9.matched elk “swoop” $50~

10. matched elk “swoop” $45~

11. matched mule deer ear rings $25~

12. matched mule deer ear rings $25~

13. matched elk ear rings $35~

14. matched elk ear rings $25~

~the swoops are 2 & 1/2 long, the ear rings 1 &1/4-1 &1/2″ long~

~all ear rings come with sterling silver finding’s w/ catch…14K gold add 35$~

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 ~my hand carved & polished elk antler rings, all $35 each under 3/4″ diameter, larger $45~

            Making these rings all happened by accident. I was polishing a ring accent for one of my custom bamboo fly rods when I accidentally made it slightly too big…it looked like a perfect fit for myself where I wear my wedding band…after trying it out I decided to switch after my wife agreed to one of these rather than my traditional band I have worn for years. Of course that was me, these rings are perfect for anyone that loves the feel and beauty of natural things. Antler is also a very durable material…not as strong as Gold, but plenty strong for even someone like myself who works with his hands everyday.

           After making quite a few for friends, I decided to include these in my collection. Every one is a bit different, since antler is not perfectly round the  carving & polishing process reveals some special things. Either remnants of the exterior cover that was created when the antlers hardened and the Elk rubbed them on saplings, parts of the incredible canal system where the life blood flowed in their growth…the colors ranging from ivory white to dark browns and even black.

            I make these from equivalent of a ring size 15/16 down to a 5/6…for requests when I cant actually let someone try the rings on(which I normally do at my shows or road trips where I set up a table), I ask them to measure a ring the wear comfortably now…example…5/8″, 3/4″ etc…measurement to withing a 1/16″ of an inch are the best. since elk rings are slightly thicker than gold or silver rings I recommend getting a slightly larger size.

           When I make rings in matched pairs etc I always make them from the same section of antler so they are similar. I have also made special boxes for them too…just contact me for more details.