When: February 6, 2015
Where: Portland, Oregon
Who: Robyn Engleking

The aim of the Real Gems Real Stories contest was to showcase the true power of jewelry. We asked you to submit your stories to tell us how your jewelry connects you to the people and places you love. We received so many wonderful entries, but eventually managed to narrow it down to five winners, who each received a $500 gift card and the chance to have their story featured in our national advertising.

We recently had the pleasure of meeting our first Real Gems Real Stories winner, Robyn Engleking, when she came into our studio for her photo shoot. Here is her winning story:

“This ring is a family heirloom. In the roaring 1920’s my Great Grandmother won this platinum ring in a cake baking contest in Montana. The ring contains a diamond, flanked by blue sapphires with detailed flowered etchings in each of the four corners and band. My Great Grandmother had a passion for education and wanted her daughter to have that same priority. She started the family tradition of this ring being given to the eldest daughter upon her high school graduation. It first was given to my Grandmother in 1939, and in 1963 she gave it to her daughter, my mother upon her graduation. I received the ring in 1984 upon my graduation, and now I await the next generation female in our family to graduate college to continue this family tradition. I love this ring for what it represents; strong, educated and intelligent women in our family.”

The Photo Shoot:

Robyn arrived bright and early and kindly bought along several photos of her Great Grandmother along with a card detailing the winning Angel Food Cake recipe.
We first shot the ring while Robyn was in hair and make-up. The ring is a beautiful example of Art Deco jewelry and encompasses many popular ring trends from the 1920’s, like the fine flower engravings, the European-cut diamond and the inclusion of colored sapphires to frame the setting.

ring-3  ring-1

Once Robyn was ready, we jumped straight into the shoot. We tried a couple of different photo compositions, one with an Angel Food Cake and the other with a photo of her Great Grandmother and the recipe card. Robyn was a real natural, very easy to shoot, and all the photos turned out great.
Robyn’s poster will be on display in our stores from April 6. You’ll have to wait until then to find out which was the winning style!