It’s no secret that I struggle to buy presents – I’ve mentioned it multiple times on this blog before. It’s not that I don’t want to buy gifts for my loved ones, I just struggle for inspiration – particularly after all the special occasions during our 11 years together as a couple.
As such, I always try to keep an eye out for retailers who make the present buying process easier. Be it by providing suggestions, bringing together a range of items or doing something that bit different. As a result, this helps to solve my gift purchasing dilemmas and makes me look a slightly better husband / dad / son / brother / friend.
One such place – Hand On Heart Jewellery – recently got in touch with me to ask whether I’d like to review their bespoke, handprint jewellery. We’ve done a couple of different handprint / footprint things before with Toddler L as presents for the grandparents, but I’ve not done one for the missus. As such, I was keen to see what kind of jewellery was available, how I’d go about immortalising my daughter in precious metals and what the missus would make of the surprise gift.
Below you’ll find my review of Hand On Heart Jewellery and the necklace that I ordered:
To start the process, I had a gander at the Hand On Heart Jewellery website. As you’d expect, I was able to browse through a range of different types of products including necklaces, bracelets, rings, charms and earrings. There was also golf ball markers which the missus doesn’t have, but I had a feeling that this gift would be unappreciated considering she’s never played golf before.
I spent way too long browsing the website for the right item. Knowing the missus – like only an 11 year relationship allows – I thought a necklace would be the best option. There were quite a few items I liked, but the quirky design of the Cut Out Heart Fingerprint Necklace (£110) stood out to me.
This necklace was an 18″ belcher chain, was made from sterling silver and included both a large heart charm and a small cut out one. I was also able to include an engraved message on the reverse (up to 10 characters) and was told that it would come with luxury gift wrap. All in all, it looked and sounded like it’d be a great surprise gift for the missus.
Making The Fingerprints
The first stage was to get Toddler L’s fingerprints over to Hand On Heart Jewellery. I was a little worried at this point – the last thing I wanted to do was chop off my daughters finger(s) and post them to the necklace makers. Not only would this be considered child abuse by the authorities, but it would ruin the missus’ surprise as she’d notice the missing digits.
Luckily, I didn’t have to worry as I received a fingerprint kit in the post the following day – this was free with my order, but can also be purchased separately. Rather than needing to send the actual fingers, they only needed a copy of the fingerprints. This made life so much easier. Or, at least in theory…
I’m not a big fan of messy play, and for all intents and purposes, this was like finger painting. Within the kit was an ink strip, printing card and instructions on how to take the prints. We then spent the next 15 or minutes trying to get decent prints. I started with her index finger, but soon realised it was a bit too small and bendy to make a print without smudging. I therefore moved onto using her thumb which provided better results.
The process was actually very easy – put a finger on the ink and then onto the paper – but doing it with a toddler had its challenges. Despite this, I was pretty sure that I’d got at least one good thumbprint to send back to Hand On Heart Jewellery. Toddler L seemed to have fun too, so win win.
Creating The Necklace
Once Hand On Heart Jewellery had the prints and had confirmed one was suitable, creation of the necklace began. Usually you don’t get to see how stuff is made – well, unless you watch CBeebies Do You Know? It normally just happens behind a curtain of magic, mystery and intrigue. However, with this being a review, they kindly sent me a couple of photos of the piece actually being made. Pretty cool, eh?
I was kept updated by email during the order process. For instance, when the item was in design and when it had been shipped. However, I could also login to my account to check out the progress at any point. Looking at my emails, it took 10 days from them receiving the prints through to me receiving the finished necklace. This was faster than I expected for a handmade item.
I received a box through the post which my great detective skills told me would be the necklace. On opening it up, I found a small, square presentation box (which I assumed contained the necklace!), another empty rectangular box, two tubes of Love Hearts, care instructions and a little card with details of who made it. I was expecting just a gift wrapped box, so these little extra touches were appreciated – particularly as it was a gift.
As nice as sweets are, the necklace was obviously the pièce de résistance – let’s take a closer look. As I hope from anything I get online, the necklace looked very similar to the design on the website. The only noticeable difference being that the print was bigger on my necklace, however I imagine that’s because I used a thumbprint rather than a fingerprint.
I really liked the look of the necklace – even more so than I did when choosing the design from the website. I was impressed with how clear the thumbprint was and liked how the engraved nature of the print gave the necklace a bit of texture. I also like how the small heart – which has been cut out from the big heart – dangles alongside the main pendant.
I’d mentioned about being able to get something engraved on the other side of the pendant. It might sound really odd, but I went with “Thumbs Up”. Why? Well, firstly because it’s a thumbprint and secondly because Toddler L does a really funny thumbs up which looks more like she’s holding a gun. The latter is something we’ll often laugh at.
As this is a personalised, unique gift, I wanted something similar with the message – rather than a “To Mummy” or something boring. I think – and hope – that this means the necklace will always bring about a smile and warm, fuzzy feelings for the missus.
All in all, I’ve been really impressed with both Hand On Heart Jewellery and the necklace we received. I think personalised gifts with handprints, footprints etc are a great way of recording memories as your baby / toddler grows so quickly. They also enable you to have something unique in a sea of mass produced tat.
It’s evident that a lot of hard work goes into the creation of the bespoke, handmade items, along with the service which keeps you updated throughout the process. I have no qualms whatsoever and wouldn’t hesitate to use again or recommend Hand On Heart Jewellery.
To end though, let’s hear from the missus as it is for her after all. As she sits next to me trying to watch Greys Anatomy, she says “I really like the necklace. I particularly like the simple design and it’s nice to have the thumbprint and message with it as it makes it that bit more special. I see they also do paw prints – maybe Dax can get me something next time!”
There you have it. A hit for her, which means a hit for me!
N.B. This review was written by me (Dave) and represents my honest opinion of the product. The fingerprint necklace was sent to me by Hand On Heart Jewellery with the purpose of writing an honest product review in exchange for the product.