Hilary Finck designs and hand-crafts all of her jewelry in her sunny San Francisco studio. Her designs are an amalgam of modernism and art deco, the constant need to brighten things up with pops of color, and the desire to transform raw metal via hand hammering. One design influences another, and another…and so it goes. Hilary’s jewelry is unique, kinetic, has a feminine spirit, and feels great to wear.
Hilary studied jewelry design and metalsmithing at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO. Upon moving to San Francisco in 2000, she apprenticed with Peter and Dan Macchiarini at Macchiarini Creative Design for two years, and then went on to start her own studio. Hilary has taught jewelry design and metalsmithing classes at the Palo Alto Art Center in Palo Alto, CA and the Silvermine Art Center in New Canaan, CT.
Hilary’s plique-a-jour jewelry is a modern take on a centuries-old enameling technique. French for “letting in daylight”, plique-a-jour is a time-intensive process whereby transparent enamel is inlayed into open spaces and repeatedly fired in a kiln until the desired results are achieved.
Hilary’s plique-a-jour “dots” are her signature design. When illuminated by light, the dots provide a brilliant and surprising pop of color. When not captured in light, the pieces have a bold elegance that stand on their own. Hilary's plique-a-jour jewelry is fresh and unique. Each piece is surely a statement and has a classic aesthetic that never goes out of style.
Nearly every piece of jewelry that comes out of Hilary’s studio has at least one element that has been hand hammered. Hammering is not just a sculptural design technique, but it also gives the metal durable flexibility and strength. Hammering literally moves metal. Hilary’s trusty planishing hammer is her go-to for flattening and forging, while an array of cross peens create different textures and make fold-forming possible.
Hammering is essential to Hilary’s designs and it means that each piece is handmade and carefully considered.