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Wooden Jewelry

Posted by Laurie Zeiden on

With wood being readily available and easy to manipulate, it's no wonder woodchucks chuck it and artists use it to make jewelry. This blog post is all about wooden jewelry - from novelty to collectible. So let's get to the photos.

This is a gopher, not a woodchuck, but it's a relative and it chucks wood too. He's carved and painted with leather ears.

This wooden dog is wearing a felt hat.

This mule has multi-colored rhinestone accents.

A grid of 9 or 16 wooden pins like the examples above could easily be framed for a one-of-a-kind art piece. Novelty wooden pins like these are readily available at flea markets, antique and collectibles shows and second hand shops.

The following vintage pieces from the 1920s to 1940s combine wood with Lucite.

The necklace below combines wood and metal. The set is mix of wood and Bakelite.


Perhaps the most famous name in wooden jewelry is Takahashi. Takahashi painted wooden birds are collectible, desirable and hard-to-find. These little beauties were carved by Yoneguma Tashahaki and painted by his wife Kiyoka using skills they learned during internment at the Poston Camp in Arizona where they were held for over three years during the years of WW II. The next three photos are of authentic Takahashi birds and I thank my friends at Jennifer Lynn's Timeless Jewelry for providing these examples.


There are many small wooden birds available through online sales sites, but buyer beware: Most are not authentic Takahashi birds. They are adorable, but they are fakes. In fact all six birds which follow are fakes. 



This sensational patriotic brooch also dates to the years around WW II. It's a wonderful combination of Bakelite, wood and and string / fabric.

Fashion and jewelry designer Miriam Haskell frequently worked with wood. Her pieces are highly collectible, especially the earliest dating from the 1920s through 1940s.

Mid-century and contemporary designers also worked with wood.

Studded bangle bracelet by Kenneth Cole.

Scuptural bracelet by Patricia von Musilin

Two necklaces from Aarikka, Finland.


Unsigned abstract pin with gold metal.

Two simple designs. An abstract fish pin from Denmark and an unsigned ring.


Note both the intricacy of the carving and the pretty clasp on the reverse of this wonderful wooden pin from Japan.


 And if you were wondering, how much wood would a woodchuck chuck If a woodchuck could chuck wood? A woodchuck would chuck as much wood as a woodchuck could chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.


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