Meet the Neolithic-inspired jeweller hammering away in a historic city lane

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Neolithic-inspired jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Norwich's Stoned & Hammered in Elm Hill. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

Lying tucked away in the heart of Norwich is a hidden gem of a jeweller determined to encapsulate the city's landscape and stories in its handmade pieces. 

Lisa Bambridge owns the Elm Hill business named Stoned and Hammered and has always been interested in jewellery.  

She said: “Around 18 years ago I found myself with a bit of time,so I started making jewellery for myself. I invested in some tools and just experimented.”  

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered uses leaves from UEA to create some of her pieces. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

Everything changed when Lisa had been looking for a certain kind of bracelet.  

The 54-year-old said: “I wanted something which was silver and plain but I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I decided to make my own.  

“I must admit the first one was a complete disaster but I truly believe we learn more from mistakes.” 

And before long everyone Lisa chatted to wanted to buy her bracelet.

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

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She said: “I started making them for my friends and then I started attending craft fairs. Before I knew it I was even featured in some high-end jewellers.  

“I think people like my jewellery because I am more attracted to quirkier things. My diamonds look artisan - as though they have been hand cut.” 

Stoned & Hammered jewellery shop. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Stoned & Hammered jewellery shop. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

And Lisa's methods are unusual too: "I find some Neolithic hammers in my grandmother's garden when I was younger so I started using them to add some texture to my pieces. 

“It’s incredible to be using a tool and method that someone would have been holding in their hand thousands of years ago.” 

Lisa has customers from all over the world, with many people coming to Norwich to visit her shop in person. 

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Neolithic jeweller Lisa Bambridge owner of Stoned & Hammered. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

She added: “I felt so happy when the shop on Elm Hill came up for rent because it is just as quirky and unique as my jewellery is and it feels like customers have to walk off the beaten track to find me.” 

She added her work is often inspired by stories of the Fine City - from acorns to represent Kett's oak and leaves from the University of East Anglia's park.

To find out more visit @stonedandhammered on Instagram

Stoned & Hammered jewellery shop. Pictures: Brittany Woodman

Stoned & Hammered jewellery shop. Pictures: Brittany Woodman - Credit: Brittany Woodman

What are some other examples of historic jewellery? 

For those interested in Stone inspired jewellery there's plenty of pieces which have come to light recently which reveal more about historic accessories. 

In 2013, evidence of a necklace was found in Croatia in a Neanderthal cave.  

That necklace could date back to around 135,000 years ago and is made out of eagle talons.  

Finding this jewellery challenged what scientists thought they knew about Neanderthals, as before this it was thought they had very limited mental capability.  

Before this discovery though, the Nassarius shell beads were considered to be the oldest jewellery in the world.  

The Israel piece dates back to 100,000 to 75,000 years ago.  

The shell jewellery has been found throughout northern Africa and even further afield, and it shows the early signs of trading as they have been found up to 200km away from the sea. 

Elsewhere a chlorite bracelet was found in a cave in Siberia with a woolly mammoth skeleton and remains of a seven-year-old girl.