By Robert Firth
A mum who swapped her ‘unfulfilling’ nine till five insurance job for making jewellery out of PET FUR and ashes claims she’s happier than ever.
Davina Green, 43, began making the unusual creations for animal lovers from the bedroom of her house in Glossop, Derbs, in 2014 after being made redundant from her office job.
The former insurance advisor now makes hundreds of pounds a month selling keyrings, necklaces and rings filled with dog hair, horse hair, budgie feathers and even hedgehog quills – as well as human hair, ashes, baby teeth and even an umbilical cord.
The mum-of-one sells her bizarre creations for up to £60 a piece and said she now has more time to spend with son Casper, eight, and husband Paul, 47, an IT worker.
She said: “I’m much happier than before. It’s definitely better than my unfulfilling insurance job.
“So far, I’ve done key rings, necklaces, wall hangings and rings with pet fur and ashes and I recently completed my first paperweight with dog hair.
“It’s generally hair from pets that have passed away, usually dogs and cats, but I also use birds’ feathers and hedgehog quills.
“Often people tell me how precious the pieces of jewellery are to them.
“I love that I can bring people a little bit of comfort in a time of sadness.
“Sometimes when I tell people what I do as a job I get weird looks and people asking me ‘is that not strange?’
“But when I explain to them what it means to my customers to have their pet close to them, most understand.
“People with their own pet tend to be more understanding.”
Davina started making jewellery five years ago after attending a course in resin jewellery making in Manchester, before creating her first piece of jewellery with ashes two years ago on the request of a local customer who wanted to put his dad’s ashes in a key ring.
After sharing some of her jewellery made with ashes online, she was soon inundated with people asking her to make keepsakes with their deceased pets’ fur and ashes.
Davina uses a toothpick to arrange the ashes and fur in her amulets and tries to keep the shape of the fur’s curls in the designs.
She said: “I get all sorts of requests.
“I have had people wanting ashes in key rings to attach to their dog’s collar, in cases where their other pet dog has died recently.
“I have done a human umbilical cord and cat’s teeth – I even had a request to make a bearded dragon’s skin into a keyring once too.”
Davina’s keyrings containing pet fur or ashes start at £12.50, with the necklaces and rings going for as much as £60.
She makes the unusual pieces in a spare room of her terraced house in Glossop during the week.
While Davina currently doesn’t own any pets, she used to keep dogs and a fish and would like to own another dog in the future.
She said: “People are close to their pets and they want their pet’s fur and ashes in jewellery to keep them close to them at all times.
“People love their pets so much and my jewellery allows them to wear their pets around their necks and keep them in a special place in their hearts.
“When I show them the finished item, they tear up because they are so happy.
“It’s not everybody’s cup of tea, but my customers love it.
“I would definitely buy one of my pieces with ashes or fur in if I had a dog again.
“Even if the dog was still alive it would nice to keep it with me at all times.”