This is my personal blog, and has zero relationship to the day job as Jewelry Group Technical Editor of Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist.

I am formally educated as an illustrator, however my need to explore science, the natural world, and 3D object creation has inspired me to enter the alchemical world of the metalsmith. I fabricate my metalwork from raw materials and do the lapidary work and cutting for most of my own stones.

I have studied independently with some of the most talented metalsmith/jewelers of our time: Michael Boyd, Michael Good, Jim Dailing, Harold O’Connor, Bob Ebendorf, Todd Reed, Alan Revere, Julie Jerman-Melka, Mary Ann Scherr, Betty Helen Longhi, Cynthia Eid, Michael David Sturlin and Marcia Lewis. I owe them the debt of honor and gratitude for their teachings.

Thank You is not enough.


9 responses to “About

  • june bloye

    You mention that it’s very damp where you are, so I’m curious where you live. I’ve been looking for a great teacher in the north west. If you teach up here, or in Tucson in the winter, please let me know.

    thanks so much. I love your videos.

  • Ron

    Hi, Helen,

    Your column is my favorite feature of the Jewelry Artist. Have learned many cool
    tips and bought quite number of the tools you showcase. Many times the company you feature is out of stock. Understandable as we read your article jump on the web and the tool. Just now went AmeriTool for the stone vise and diamond hand laps. Guess what there not even on their site. In their search box I typed the as we have them on the printed page. Both searches come “no results”. As you wrote..”catch as catch can”…diamond hand laps ” sporadically” to me “no results” means not on their web site. Do you search the companies sites of any tool maker to see what the results are?? Maybe in the future you might do that for each tool. Or best would be to showcase tools that are available to us, your readers. Otherwise what’s the point of Cool Tools? If we don’t have access to them and only you do. Seems a waste of your time and effort to help us out. Waste of my time trying to buy these tools. Maybe feature companies who you know does have the tool. And we can go to their site and buy this tool. Not get “no results”.
    Take care,


  • helendriggs

    Hi Ron!
    Boy do I understand your frustration. Believe me, I make every effort to alert a manufacturer/vendor when I write about a particular tool. But, that said I can assure you that back in August 2011 — when I wrote my column for the February issue, those laps were available. Did you try calling AmeriTool? 530-223-2031. Sometimes, a call works way better than a click, especially for small supply tools.
    Or follow this: http://lopacki.com/files/ and scroll to the bottom right of the page — there are similar flat laps available there as of right now.
    Thanks for the comments. And, btw, this is my personal blog, not the magazine’s so, I rarely check the comments here. Email me at the magazine for a faster reply! HDriggs@interweave.com.
    Good Luck!

  • Donna

    Love your work Helen – but I have been trying to get someone to address my issue, can you please help? I have your one hour rings video BUT One of the rings requires wire riveting and you do not show how to finish it. Just do regular riveting techniques…. Right. Since the ring example uses a glass bead how do you make the wire rivet without breaking the bead?  Too hard the bead is broken, too soft the rivet does not form. That step should not have been eliminated. Many broken beads later – I still have not successfully completed this ring. HELP! Or please post a short video on how to finish this ring.

    thank you, thank you 🙂

  • helendriggs

    Hi Donna!
    I am teetering on the brink of adding video content to my blog. Please be patient as I overcome some technology hurdles to get this accomplished.

  • Donna

    thanks a bunch – I can wait patiently 🙂

  • Laura Leiden

    I am signed up for your Color on Metal class in Tucson and have some questions about the materials list. Could you please email me so I can ask the question?
    Laura Leiden

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