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Emotional plea - engraving in the UK

I apologise from the start that this is a very emotional plea, and
hope that it does not offend anybody.

Basically, my lovely daughter is 31 weeks pregnant with her first
child, and at the beginning of March, her beloved boyfriend and
father of their baby girl took his own life. Obviously it has been a
tremendous shock to all who knew and loved him, including myself as
I had grown to love him as a son. My daughter’s world has been turned
upside down. I don’t want to mention names as I don’t want to upset
his family by mentioning him openly on a public forum.

Anyway, my daughter’s boyfriend was cremated about a month ago and
his parents have sent her some of his ashes so that she can
incorporate them into some jewellery. She has bought a lovely little
sterling silver, heart-shaped urn, specially designed for the
purpose, and would really like his name on the front and a few words
engraved on the back.

Unfortunately, as she has now been left to bring up their baby girl
by herself, she cannot afford to pay for it at the moment, as she has
so many baby things to buy. She has moved back in with us so that we
can help her look after her baby, but we’re tight for cash at the
moment too, as we have had to convert and decorate a room for her and
baby, and have had two long-distance funerals to attend in the last
month (the second of which was her favourite grandmother who died a
couple of weeks ago too).

My question is: is there anyone in the UK who does engraving, who
would be prepared to engrave her urn pendant for free? I know it’s a
big ask and probably very cheeky, but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to
ask. She’s keen to get it done as soon as possible, as she wants to
put his ashes in the pendant once it’s been engraved. She said that
she wants to do the same for her daughter, ie buy the same urn
pendant for her daughter, to give to her when she’s older, but that
she will gladly pay for the engraving on the second pendant, as she
will hopefully be in a better financial position then (she’s planning
to buy the second pendant and have it engraved within the next year).

I am sorry if this request has upset or offended anybody, but I felt
I had to ask, as my daughter is really going through it at the
moment and desperately wants to have him close to her as soon as
possible, by wearing the urn pendant, engraved, filled and sealed.

Thanking you wonderful Orchid folk in advance,
Helen Hill

Oh Helen,

I am so sorry to learn of the tragedy you and your family are now
dealing with. I send you all my deepest sympathy. How heartbreaking
for your lovely daughter as well as all the people who loved her

I do hope that someone will engrave the urn for her. It is so hard
to lose a loved one.

Best wishes to all of you, Alma

Helen, I live in the U.S., but if you can get the piece to me, I
would be proud to engrave it and ship it right it back. E-mail me
direct and I’ll take care of it.

Tom Arnold

Helen, prayers and love for your family. I hope you find an angel
who can take care of the task for you.



This is such sad news. You are always a bright spot here on Orchid.
I’m so sorry for your daughter’s loss and yours. I hope someone
comes to help you two quickly. It will be a warm and lovely way to
remember your “son”. Our thoughts are with you.

Sending a hug from across the pond.


If no one in the Uk comes forward send it to me. Ill have it engraved
and send it back to you. I don’t do engraving but can get it done.


Dear Helen,

There are a no of issues here,

1stly your and your daughters loss, I do understand and can only say
that as someone that has been through what you are going through now,
the pain of loss is hard to bear.

however as the tree over time grows its bark over where a branch has
broken,so this wound in your lives will heal in time.

2ndly, anything that helps you all to cope with each day is a good
thing, so having some of this young man’s ashes near can only help.

3rdly, theres the issue of engraving.

hand engravers skill is very high and his time consequently most

However all is not lost, In our local town we have a heel bar,
drycleaners key cutting shop that has a 3d computer controlled
engraving machine for work that is for your needs. I know the man
there ill get a price per letter for you from him tomorrow…

as money is currently a problem for you, if your daughter isnt up to
it right now, perhaps you could find a similar shop near you. then
offer to for example clean their windows as many times as they want
to cover the cost.

Needs must the devil drives, so to speak.

On a final note, there is light at the end of the tunnel, you and
your family can look forward to all those lovely days in you new

That will bring pleasure to you for ever.
Nr Corfe Castle

Dear Helen,

Please accept my condolences for the loss of your grandchild’s
father. It is always a tragic loss when a precious life ends too
soon. I am sure that this warm and supportive community will assist

I have said a few prayers tonight for you, your daughter, her baby
and your grandchild’s daughter.

Betsy Lurey, Atlanta, GA

Hi Helen,

I’m in UK (Midlands) and would be proud to do it for you. Please
contact me for details.

Regards, Gary Wooding

Dear Helen,

I am so sorry to hear of your daughter’s (and yours) loss. I don’t
live in the UK so I really can’t help you, but I do have a

If no one steps up to volunteer engraving the urn piece, perhaps you
can acquire a Dremel Engraver tool and do it yourself as a gift to
your daughter. The engraver costs about $23.00 US- does anyone in the
UK sell Dremel equipment? If not, and no one locally can help you,
let me know if that is what you wish to do. If necessary, I will
purchase a Dremel here in the States and ship it to you directly.
Wish I could do more…

Ruthie Cohen

Checked today in Wareham shoe repairer/engraver.,
He can do 20 letters for UKP 15.00
more pro rata.

This will give you a guide as to what can be done. Youll have to
check what the window cleaning rate is in your area to work out a
trade off.

Keep us up to date as to progress.

Hi Ted,

This will give you a guide as to what can be done. Youll have to
check what the window cleaning rate is in your area to work out a
trade off. 

You have made it clear how valuable your skills are. I agree. We
should all be well paid for our work. However in some circumstances
(these) charity, openness of heart and generosity of skills and
pocketbook might be the order of the day. God forbid such dire and
tragic circumstances should overtake any of the rest of us.

Applause for all who have stepped up with their gifts. I would offer
but the regrets on acceptance would be endless. I am a dreadful
engraver. My kindest thoughts are with the family.

Lisa (Back from a week in Paris and London. Still waking up at 4:30
am. What is with that??) Topanga, CA USA

Byzantia Jewelry


Our heart felt condolences & prayers to you & your family.


Dear Orchid community,

I am delighted to announce that the wonderful Orchid folk have come
up trumps once again. I have had many emails, both on and offline,
with wonderful messages of support, thoughts, prayers, suggestions,
etc. The majority of people were not able to help in the practical
sense, with the engraving, but were of enormous help, offering their
emotional support.

I have had two offers from engravers, both of whom said they would
be honoured to do the work for me. So many thanks to Tom Arnold from
the States and Gary Wooding in the UK. I have decided to go with
Gary, due to lower shipping costs and quicker turn around time, but
I hope to perhaps put some work Tom’s way in the near future too. I
also had a number of American members offerto do it if I couldn’t
find anyone in the UK. Many thanks to them also.

My daughter’s and my thanks to:

Neil, Jo Haemer, Alma Rands, Betsy Lurey, Marty Hykin, John Rasmussen,
Jamie King, Ray, Brian Meek, Kerry, Karen Trimble Shell, Ted Frater,
Ruthie Cohen, Norman Kimes (Tienson Manufacturing and Engraving), Tom
Arnold, Gary Wooding

I am humbled by the magnitude of support we have been shown. Many
thanks again.

Helen Hill

You have made it clear how valuable your skills are. I agree. We
should all be well paid for our work. However in some
circumstances (these) charity, openness of heart and generosity of
skills and pocketbook might be the order of the day. God forbid
such dire and tragic circumstances should overtake any of the rest
of us. 

Its not in any way as a defence of my Ist post on this delicate
subject, but I have had a couple of emails saying in effect my
suggestions were out of place.

Fortunately, Helen has has an offer thst resolves her problem, and
thats all to the good.

however, when i posted my reply there hadnt been any offers of help
so there were only 2 options open to Helen.

Wait till she had the funds to pay for the engraving, or find some
other way to cover the cost. My suggestion was what I would have done
to get the result I wanted.

Needs must the devil dives.

This brings me to the other point you make how much I value my time.
All of us who work for ourselves have to decide how we charge for
our time and how we allocate each hour of the day.

There are lots of occasions where I give my time for free,as is my
choice, wether its to do something Ive not done before so consider
it a learning curve, or just because I want to.

The other poster in this batch of posts is from Brendar, re one of a
kind pricing is relevant to this matter.

Only you can decide what your time is worth, and that depends on how
confident you are in your work.

If its something thats nor been done before in your trade, then ask
what it really cost in time and materials.

You can always reduce the price!!

To give you an example, I developed a technique to forge titanium
some 1/4in thich by 18in dia bowls.

I knew that had never been done before so asked $5000.00 for it. And
yes, they sell…

So to put my cards on the table, perhaps its time to say I do have a
somewhat out of date web site.

If you google for Ted. Frater Bronzesmith and minter youll find a CV
and more on the work ive done.

The little monologue for the spirit of Creativity medal was a high
point in my minting work.

My work therefore has to speak for itself.
Judge it as you will

In Dorset

Continue from:

I’d just like to report back regarding my plea for someone to engrave
my daughter’s urn pendant to commemorate her beloved late boyfriend.
Gary Wooding offered to hand engrave the pendant for her, at no
charge. I sent him the pendant, and after providing details about
what my daughter wanted, Gary proceeded to to the engraving. He sent
it back in short order, and I am thrilled with what he did for my
daughter - it is absolutely beautiful! My daughter is over the moon
with the result too, so a huge THANK YOU to Gary from my daughter and
myself (she emailed you from a hotmail account to say thank you, but
spam filters may have weeded it out, but she did write). Her baby is
due in three weeks. We’re hoping she looks like her daddy, but she’ll
be beautiful whoever she looks like. She will be one very loved and
special little girl.

Thank you SO much Gary. Orchid is full of wonderful people.
Sometimes it truly is like a family.

Helen Hill

Helen Hill*

“We are family, but from different Parents” All you need to do is to
ask! Can’t imagine the joy and sadness you folks are going
through…May G-d give you strength!!!

Good for you Gary Wooding, maybe we can all get to see the final
engraving results sometime.

Gerry Lewy, from Toronto!

We are family, but from different Parents" All you need to do is
to ask! Can't imagine the joy and sadness you folks are going
through..May G-d give you strength!!! 

Thanks very much Gerry. I don’t know if Gary took any photos or not.
I haven’t yet, but every time I’ve tried to upload photos to Orchid
by following the instructions regularly posted, it hasn’t worked.
Don’t know if it only works for windows machines.


I took some photos but am not at all happy with them: they are
certainly not good enough for general display. Sorry.

Photographing small, curved, shiny silver items requires time and
equipment that I don’t have.

Regards, Gary Wooding

Yes, I can appreciate the difficulties of photographing such forms.
I’m doubtful that my other half will do any better, but I’ll ask him
to have a go anyway and see what he comes up with. You’ve done such a
beautiful job, that it would be a shame if it couldn’t be