That horse, a chestnut Standardbred mare named Goldie, was rescued by Button and her then-fiancé Shane in 2006, when the horse was slaughterhouse-
Unique, memorable options are frequently selected by modern couples for their special day, but this engagement ring is truly one-of-a-kind because the center gemstone is a ‘hoof gem’ created from Goldie’s cast-off hoof clippings. It might very well be the first horse hoof engagement ring in history.
“Heather sent us the ring and the hoof clippings from Goldie, but we had no idea that it was her engagement ring until she emailed us the beautiful wedding photos a few weeks ago,” says Robert Merkert, a Vermont-based jeweler, ‘horse dad’ and founder of Equinite™ Gems (www.Equinite.com).
The silver ring setting has 12 diamonds surrounding the center stone and was created by a local craftsman; the ring’s original center stone was an ‘ammolite,’
“I was devastated when the original stone was lost, as each one is very unique. It would have been impossible to replace,” says Button. That’s when Shane reminded Heather about an ad she clipped out of a horse magazine.
“I had shown the Equinite ad to Shane a few months back, and he was brilliant to think of it as a replacement. I then contacted Bob about whether or not he could make a stone and set it for us, and he thought it would be no problem at all,” says Button.
Merkert reports his customers often mail in a setting to fill with a custom Equinite gem from their own horse. “It’s a great way to personalize a much-loved piece of jewelry, or even a family heirloom.”
Button says she couldn’t be more pleased with the results. “The new Equinite stone is every bit as beautiful and unique as the ammolite one was, but it is so much more special,” she says. “It reminds me every day how much I am loved by my hubby and my pony. I am so very lucky to have them both in my life!”
About Equinite™ Gems
What is an Equinite™ Gem? It's a polished 'gemstone' hand-crafted from horse hoof clippings. That's right - the 'smelly discards' left behind after the horseshoer's visit, once sterilized and processed, become beautiful gem cabochons with the translucence and striations present in healthy hooves. These gems, which resemble tiger's eye or jasper stones, are then placed into precious metal settings of sterling silver and gold. Equinite Gems are available in rings, pendants, earrings, bracelets, cufflinks, money clips, and other options; custom orders are available. Equinite Gems are a 'green' renewable resource, requiring no mining or other environmentally-
Developed by Vermont jeweler, entrepreneur, and 'horse dad' Robert Merkert, Equinite Gems have been delighting equestrians and horse lovers of all ages. Visit www.Equinite.com for more information or to place an order.