Irish jewelry designer creates a contemporary Ring of Kerry
By: Susan Byron | Published Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 8:34 AM | Updated Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 10:02 AM
No doubt you have all heard of the Ring of Kerry the that famous scenic drive around the Iveragh Peninsula on the West coast of Ireland.
1000‘s of people ‘do’ the Ring of Kerry every year taking in its wonderful sights like the golden strand at Rossbeigh looking out over the Dingle Peninsula, the prehistoric stone forts at Cahirciveen and the picturesque little fishing village which is the gateway to Valentia Island where dinosaur footprints are etching in the mud flats or you can catch a boat out to to the dramatic Skelligs Islands.
On then perhaps to Waterville and Derrynane House in Caherdaniel, home once upon a time to Daniel O’Connell the liberator and then on via Sneem to Kenmare where you will find master goldsmith Paul Kelly working away in his shop on Henry Street.
An enterprising jeweller by day and organic mussel farmer by night Paul Kelly lives with his young family of redheads on the beautiful Beara Peninsula. Originally from Kilkenny, he was apprenticed to Rudolf Hletzel, he has come up with the novel idea of a contemporary Ring of Kerry. Inspired by an Irish mythological tale of love and war recalled by the druid Amergin in the 15th century, it tells of the Princess Sceine whose people where the Milesians who crossed the oceans following a star to be the first inhabitants of Ireland. Intertwining Torc style bands of silver and gold finish with a brilliant cut diamond and a green emerald combine to symbolize the green, white and gold of Ireland in what I imagine will become a new classic similar to the Claddagh ring of Galway.
Available in sterling silver, 9 or 18 carat gold this new Ring of Kerry is a stunning piece of jewelry that would make a fabulous gift, engagement ring or special anniversary present for anybody with a love of or connection with Ireland.
You can tell Paul lives and breathes Ireland, Kerry in particular, each piece is lovingly hand made in his workshop behind the counter although he is more than happy to take a break and chat with customers who pop in while on holidays to browse or perhaps choose a very special momento of their trip. 2013 being the year of The Gathering he has created a special version of his Ring of Kerry to mark the occasion, incorporating red (ruby) and blue (sapphire) stones so that both American, English or French nationalities can be included, very clever and beautiful.
And in case you are wondering how these rings feel, in the interests of research I tried each one on and of course I liked the18 carat gold and white gold version best and was delighted how well it sat on my finger, being solid gold it is quite chunky but the design is so good it sits very comfortably, hint, hint darling...... American buyers have the advantage of being able to purchase these rings tax free which represents a 23 percent saving on the retail price of $499 for the silver Ring of Kerry. For further information, pricing and availability visit Paul F Kelly's own website http://pfk.ie