Dad taught me everything I know, both stone working and silver smithing. I have a bachelors degree in Geology from Purdue, which is where I learned to identify most stones, and where to find them (though I find a lot in my fathers basement). I am the Shop Supervisor for the Des Moines Lapidary Society because otherwise I couldn't get into the shop every week to cut stones. I have cut, and polished over 500 stones, all freeform, and turned into jewelry over four dozen of them. Each piece is made to fit the stone and therefore is one of a kind. And since each is made by hand and not by a machine - it is not perfect. I have hundreds of slabs waiting to be cut, and hundreds of pounds of chunks of stones waiting for their inner beauty to be freed. I make pendents, ear rings, rings, key fobs, hat ornaments, sweater ties, and bolo type ties.