Vases

One of the most versatile items in the JA Campbell range.

A vase is an ideal present for so many occasions, a birthday, a wedding, an anniversary or as a presentation piece. (Especially if engraved with a suitable message to remind the recipient of the sentiments expressed by family, friends or colleagues).

So many of the items we now sell are requested to be engraved.

A vase can be used in EVERY room in the house or at the office.

It can be used EVERYDAY of the year with either fresh, silk or dried arrangements to suit each season. Or even just look in your garden for inspiration.

On the JA Campbell website we change the pictures of both the silver and the silver & crystal vases to reflect the changing seasons.

Look out for Autumn ones any day now!

20 Medium Autumn med res

We offer two styles of vase, three with crystal bodies and a detachable silver base and three made entirely of sterling silver.

The choice is yours. Browse our website and order online or give us a call at anytime. We like to talk!!!

Improvised Egg Cup

If you think that the egg cup in the picture below is a bit unusual, you are correct.

Egg cup

It is not actually an egg cup (although it works very well as one). It is in fact a Silver Claret Jug component.

It is bad isn’t it when a silversmith has not got a proper egg cup and has to make do! It is a bit like the shoemaker’s children – usually poorly shod.

The good news is I am busy actually making a batch of Silver Claret Jugs – the real thing in which to serve your favourite wine.

 

 

Al fresco is coming

An essential piece of the al fresco summer table is the stylish sterling silver and crystal salad bowl. The sterling silver salad servers seen in action during one of my recent evening meals complement the bowl perfectly. Still in the dining room at the moment- but I have high hopes for some warm summer weather to come soon!!

Salad bowl

You may wish to add other important items such as the sterling silver oil and vinegar set and the sterling silver salt and pepper mills not forgetting a sterling silver and crystal decanter for your chilled Chablis.

Enjoy the summer soon to come!

Two wounded pieces of Silver

2018 got off to the usual start with some repairs. It is usually claret jugs or decanters before Christmas with people wanting to get their Christmas lunch table ready and everything else comes after. This year was no exception, although the claret jugs were a bit thin on the ground.

The two pieces so far are a worthless Britannia metal bottle frame and a 1930’s five light Corinthian candelabra.

First the Britannia Metal frame:

This is going to cost more to repair than it is worth in economic terms. The owner knows this but still wants it repaired. It is in quite a bad way and is going to take all our skills to repair. The bowls are suffering from metal fatigue which is obvious with the numerous cracks. These cracks will need to be soldered using a very low temperature solder. We will have to make this solder by alloying a high percentage of tin to some lead and rolling it into usable rods. The addition of tin will lower its melting point. Once the piece is all back together again and the cracks repaired the bowls can be gently rounded up.

3 bowl frame

Co-incidentally this item is from a local stately home where I had the pleasure to do some amateur archeological work as a teenager many years ago. The organizer Ken Marshall was undertaking a survey on Essex moated houses some of which had not survived. I and a team of youngsters from the Essex field club were the helpers.

Second the Silver Candelabra:

This is owned by a local freemason’s lodge which has several of them apparently. Being a rather poorly made palladium style piece made in the 1930’s in Sheffield it is not made for the regular use it has received and consequently is in rather poor condition. It has been made down to a budget from stampings and poorly assembled. It mainly needs a new finial making for the centre section. This would have been reasonably straight forward until it fell out of the car which delivered it. It now also has a broken arm as well.

Candleabra

Fortunately the workshop is not too busy at present so a slow and careful start can be made. This is by far the best philosophy with jobs of this nature which can often go from bad to worse if any attempt is made to rush the process.

Silver Alsatian Pendant

We have just completed an unusual job this week, which was actually a piece of jewellery. Not what JA Campbell are known for. The request was from a farmer friend of my son who wanted a little present. It was to be a silver pendant in the form of an Alsatian dog. I knew how to go about it, it was just a case of finding an image and getting it approved by the customer. The image was provided by Monica from R & M Engraving.

The next stage was to select a piece of silver sheet and polish one side and send it to the hand engraver couple, Mike and Freda Keen. Mike engraved the image onto the sheet and Freda (an extremely versatile Dutch lady, she even does sculpture) pierced the Alsatian profile along the line which Mike had engraved. On the collar of the dog was to be the name Lola. All I had to do when the newly pierced dog profile came back was to re-polish it, solder a ring onto the back, fit a silver chain, re-polish finally and place it in the presentation box.

The customer was delighted!

dog-tag

A serious consideration – to engrave – yes or no?

If the item is a present for say a wedding, a retirement, a christening, a birthday, even as a thank you then a short message is a must. Not a great long rambling story, just a few words and probably a date.

If you own a super yacht, hotel, restaurant or just an exceptional home you might like your family crest, logo or ship’s name engraved on said piece/s

If the piece is for your own personal use and enjoyment then the choice is yours – probably do not engrave.

Our engravers Stewart Morris for the silver and Richard and Monica for the crystal are all experts in their fields. They can advise and will bring to attention any spellings which they suspect are incorrect and advise on size, placement and layout of the engraving required. Both firms can re-draw (if necessary) from existing artwork into digital format.

Several items from JA Campbell are used as trophies and have been customised by engraving. Indeed we supplied Grand National trophies several years ago. The Zetland Gold Cup was made by JA Campbell.

Mahogany Hogget – Customer service!

Today – an unusual job! A regular Australian customer asked if the wooden base on one of our hogget decanters could be made from Mahogany. This one is usually made in Maple wood and is easy to “turn” and is light and modern in colour.

I tried to dissuade him by saying that mahogany is unavailable in the thickness that this base required and that the block would have to be made by laminating several thickness of mahogany together and hence an extra cost. He was not put off and ordered and paid for it there and then.

I glued several layers of mahogany together a few days ago and today did the turning and polishing. I have to admit it does look quite good. Not my taste – but I am not the customer and also I do not have a monopoly on good taste!!!

Hogget Mahog

The moral of this story is all about giving the best customer service possible.

A Different 21st Birthday Present

21st February 2016

A woman phoned yesterday saying that she was on the JA Campbell website and wanted to know the difference between our 2 Claret Jugs – the Chalice JC/137/F and the Grape and Vine JC/137/G

I explained that they were basically the same but with a different handle and different price points. She went on to say that it was her son’s 21st birthday present and asked about the delivery time of the chalice which was the one she preferred and also how to order on the website or over the phone. I said the latter method was the quickest and easiest.

At this stage of the conversation I said that I thought her choice of a Claret Jug was rather nice but unusual as a 21st. She agreed but said that her husband had been given one on his 21st and had enjoyed using it over the years and wanted the same for his son.

I went on  to tell her some of the details of this Claret Jug such as the option to replace the crystal body should anything untoward happen. The addition of a set of cleaning balls with each decanter and so on. Just a few extra touches that JA Campbell provide as a service to customers.

 

Wedding Gifts

August has become one of the most popular months for couples to get married here in the UK. So if you have got a friend of family members wedding this month you need to make sure that you have got them a gift. Many couples often do gift lists however the bride and groom do like surprises too.

If you are looking for a wedding gift that’s a little bit different and will stand the test of time why not give them a gift of silver. Here at J A Campbell we have a huge selection of silver wedding gifts that any new married couple would love.

A great wedding gift idea is getting a wedding picture. You can choose the best picture of the couple during the ceremony or during the reception and have it framed in a hand made hallmarked sterling silver photo frame. It’s the perfect place to keep those treasured memories. If you want to add that extra wow factor to the gift you could also add a personal engraved message on the frame, maybe the couple’s name and date they got married.

To see the whole collection of silver wedding gifts click onto www.jacampbell.co.uk

Silver Wedding Anniversary Gifts

Celebrating a silver wedding anniversary is a great achievement for two people and should be celebrated in style. Traditionally on a silver wedding anniversary a gift of silver should be given to the couple.

At JA Campbell you will find a selection of fantastic silver wedding gifts.
By choosing a sterling silver wedding gift from JA Campbell you are choosing a silver gift that will stay in the family for years to come and will be passed down from generation to generation.

If you are looking for a silver wedding gift that is practical and can be used regularly by the couple then why not look at the sterling silver tea set or the silver cake stand, photo frames are also a great gift idea too.

Here at JA Campbell we think the sterling silver and crystal decanters make a perfect wedding anniversary gift. All silver products at JA Campbell can be personalised too with the option of having the silver or crystal gift engraved. Why not add their names and the date of the anniversary; this would be a lovely reminder of the special occasion.

Whether you’re looking for a special anniversary present for Mum & Dad or looking for a special anniversary gift for a family member let JA Campbell  can provide you with the perfect gift and can personalise it for you too.