When the Carr Fire Got Tough, Janine Hall Made Jewelry

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I’m not usually a covetous person. And I’m usually not much of a jewelry person. I’ve owned one diamond in my life, a little speck inside my antique-style engagement ring when I was a 19-year-0ld bride.

But when aNewsCafe.com subscriber Janine Hall of Janine’s Jewelry in Redding brought this pendant by my house as a donation for aNewsCafe.com’s online auction, I suddenly experienced a strange sensation.

I absolutely fell in love with it. I wanted it with every ounce of my greedy little heart.

Hand-crafted by Janine, the pendant is 14-kt. yellow gold, and features 2.5 carats of gorgeous opal – which is October’s birth stone – and .22 carats of three diamonds. It’s absolutely exquisite. Hall even special ordered an exotic-wood box to contain the pendant. The entire package is a work of art.

Alas, no matter how much I lust after this pendant, it will go the highest bidder during aNewsCafe.com’s online auction next month. I will tell you that the retail value of this pendant is $2,400, and unless a minimum bid is reached, the piece will be returned to Janine.

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Janine Hall created this pendant especially for aNewsCafe’s upcoming auction to benefit Carr Fire graduating seniors.

Janine’s Jewelry has been the go-to place for people with jewelry that’s been burned in the north state fires, such as this set of rings from one customer whose home was lost in the fire.

Here’s what the burned jewelry looked like before Janine tackled the rings.

Dare I mention the holidays are coming, and this exclusive Carr Fire pendant would make the best gift ever for some lucky woman?

To understand this pendant, you have to know a little about Janine Hall, its creator, someone who’s had a lifelong passion and fascination for metal and torch work. Her early jewelry fabrication and repair education started in Burbank in 1974, and she made her way to Redding a few years later.

In 1979, Hall was given the opportunity to purchase a tiny kiosk type jewelry shop inside of Dicker’s department store in the Mall in downtown Redding. Dicker’s is gone, and most of what was known as the mall is gone, but Hall and her shop are still there.

Over these decades Janine has fabricated from scratch thousands of one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry, and has repaired countless other pieces. Her style is clean and sometimes leans slightly to an Art Deco look. She has also become one of the most trusted jewelers in the north state, with customers on the East Coast, in Paraguay, and even Australia. Janine’s Jewelry has a Facebook page, which you can find here. She also has an Etsy store, which you can check out here.

In Hall’s almost 40 years in business, she’s contributed to countless fund raisers with donations of jewelry and gift certificates, supporting her community.

And now, she’s gone above and beyond by creating this incredible piece for aNewsCafe.com’s online auction.

The Carr Fire left so many of us feeling helpless. We wanted to do something to help. Nearly everyone did what they could. I remember sitting at my keyboard for sometimes 15- 18 hour stretches writing and posting about the Carr Fire, the Delta Fire, and the Hirz Fire. I kept hearing about the fun activity at Sizzle’s downtown, where meals were being prepared and delivered to fire fighters and first responders. You know how much I love to cook. I wanted so badly to help out at the World Central Kitchen project, but my place was at aNewsCafe.com. That was my job.

In Hall’s case, what does a jeweler do when her city is in danger of being annihilated by fire? Yes, she is now restoring charred jewelry, but she wanted to do more. So when she heard about aNewsCafe.com’s upcoming online auction to benefit a graduating senior whose home was destroyed in the Carr Fire, she knew what she’d do.

She designed and created a custom pendant, just for the auction. She made it with the Carr Fire in mind. Notice the slightly melted looking edges of the yellow gold. Notice the flame beneath the opal, and the different textures; smooth and rough.

Janine Hall designed and created this pendant specifically for aNewsCafe.com’s upcoming online auction. Retail value: $2,400.

Hall’s camera shy, so she didn’t want her photo taken, but she’s not shy about the pendant. She knows it’s a fine piece of work; a thing of beauty.

This angle of Janine’s pendant shows the side detail of the opal and the “melted” edges.

This piece will join other donations that we’ll feature in aNewsCafe.com’s online auction next month.

I give much credit for this entire auction idea to aNewsCafe.com’s Deborah Segelitz, who started the ball rolling by commissioning from her home in Scotland a custom-made Phoenix by the Welsh glass-blower, Paul Jones, whose company happens to be called Phoenix Glass, and 2018 happens to be his 10th anniversary.

Click here to read about what led Segelitz to make this bold move. 

Just a heads up that Beverly Stafford, one of aNewsCafe.com’s most loyal readers, and first paid subscribers, already has placed an unofficial bid of $100 on the Carr Fire Phoenix.

The Carr Phoenix glass sculpture, commissioned by Deborah Segelitz, created by artist Paul Jones. This is the auction’s first item.

Hall’s Carr Fire pendant and Jones’ Carr Fire Phoenix are just two of the incredible auction items that have been donated for November’s auction by ANC subscribers. In the coming weeks I’ll feature a few pieces at a time, in addition to information about the subscribers who contributed the item.

The timing for this is perfect, because November is aNewsCafe.com’s 11th birthday, and 11 is one of my favorite numbers.

Stay tuned for the exact auction dates, and details about how the auction will work.

Until then, one thing I’m considering is hosting a small gathering at my home for ANC staff, auction contributors and winning bidders, so they can meet, and so the winners can take home their items. It’ll be part ANC birthday party, part auction celebration, and a wonderful way to start saying goodbye to 2018, a year that many of us will never forget.


Doni Chamberlain
Independent online journalist Doni Chamberlain founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke. Chamberlain is an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, California.
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28 Responses

  1. Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

    What a spectacular piece! I imagine all of the female ANC readers feel just as covetous as you did. With this type of talent offering up their artwork, ANC may be able to benefit two deserving students. Local talent and from across the water – all pitching in to help . Maybe Deb has a pen that wants to join the Phoenix.

    • I’m hoping we can have enough in our first-year scholarship fundraiser for more than one student. I’m hopeful.
      And Deb has already done so much already (I should have taken a photo of the box the Carr Fire Phoenix arrived to show how thoroughly Deb wrapped it for shipping …. and mailing. I laughed when I saw how much bubble-wrap she used. Even so, I held my breath as I unwrapped it, because this was such a delicate little piece. Also, mailing anything between Europe and the U.S. is expensive. Maybe for next year’s auction we might be graced with a Deb pen … but this year I’m just so grateful to her for all she’s done for this event. As far as I’m concerned, the credit goes to her for kick-starting it.)

    • Deb Segelitz Deb Segelitz says:

      I’ll have to keep it to just the Phoenix this year, Beverly, but that means I have a year to look for a suitable pen to donate to next year’s auction 🙂

      Doni, I held my breath when I unwrapped, and then re-wrapped, the Phoenix! I just about sketched a diagram of how Paul had wrapped it so that I could replicate it… but I do think I went a bit mad with the packing tape! I don’t think I really fully exhaled until I knew it was safely in your hands :-).

      Though I’ll only be able to ‘see’ the auction from afar, I am so excited to be a small part of it!

      • I think I have a little Carr Fire Phoenix-mailing PTSD because my heart beat a little faster just reading about you unwrapping and wrapping the Phoenix. You did NOT go mad with the packing tape! It was just right. My hands were literally shaking a little when I opened the box, because in my mind’s eye my nightmare was I’d open it and see a little glass wing in the bottom of the box. That didn’t happen, but still … I will be greatly relieved when the Carr Fire Phoenix is safely with its winning bidder.

        (And you don’t have to donate anything next year, Deb. Really. You’ve done so much already.)

        • Deb Segelitz Deb Segelitz says:

          Hahaha oops, sorry Doni! I got a few palpitations writing about that just now, too, so I understand your Carr Fire Phoenix-mailing PTSD 😀

          If, in the next 12 months, I find a pen that somehow embodies this project/auction/effort, I will buy it and restore it and keep it safe for the next one. It would have to be something special!

  2. Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

    That is spectacular. I can vouch for Janine’s work. I lost my engagement ring in my wood stove, where it was found one year later by the chimney sweep. It had gone from gold to burnt, but she restored it to beauty. And when I took some vintage jewelry to her, she created a beautiful Art Deco-y pendant. Her work is exquisite and worth every penny.

    • I’d never heard that story, Barbara. I think most people would have just considered the ring a lost cause (I would have). You’re right that her work IS exquisite. That’s the only word I can think of to fully describe it.

  3. Avatar Timothy Yee says:

    Thanks for the inspiring article. Please do keep us in the loop on the auction. Good cause to support!

  4. Avatar Marilyn Medley says:

    My son and daughter in law and 2 year old lost their home in the Carr fire. (Had their new baby yesterday) Wonderful group Samaratans Purse sifted their ashes, all all they could find was a little play tea pot and my d-in laws favorite silver bracelet, engraved and slightly melted, but definitely burned. I took it to Janine and she restored it beautifully. I know she spent much time on it. She refused payment. So while I was there talking to her, I saw a pair of beautiful opal earrings, which I purchased. Then I came home and opened News Cafe and saw the matching necklace. Needless to say, I’m excited.

    • First, Marilyn, congratulations on the birth of a new grandchild!

      Second, I’m so sorry for the loss of your son and daughter-in-law’s home, but what a great story about Janine’s work on your daughter-in-law’s recovered bracelet.

      Third, I have a hunch some people who are wanting this pendant may have you as a contending co-bidder. If you have a pair of Janine’s opal earrings, then this pendant is an obvious choice for you. 🙂

  5. Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

    And already the bidding begins!

  6. Avatar Marilyn Medley says:

    I will most definitely bid on it. And I’m so glad my husband does not know how to use a computer.

  7. Avatar Judith Salter says:

    What types of items are you still needing for the auction? I’d love to contribute something

    • Thank you for the kind offer, Judy. I’m the worst auction coordinator ever. I’m not going out and beating the bushes for donations. I haven’t asked for one. Every item so far has been volunteered by someone who’s part of our family of subscribers.

      So whatever cool something you’d think would be interesting and desirable, I’d accept it with a grateful heart.

      We’ll have at least one experience item that I’ll talk more about later, but it’ll be a dinner for eight at my house, with Chef Cal and Christa DeMercurio as part of the cooking team. And we’re open to more of those kinds of auction items.

      We have some really nice art pieces, and a gorgeous hand-crafted afghan, and many other things that I’ll write more about in coming posts.

      • Deb Segelitz Deb Segelitz says:

        I would like someone to please build one of those Star Trek transporters so that I can win a seat at your table, Doni! Any scientists/engineers in the ANC readership? 😉

  8. AJ AJ says:

    I saw those rings before they were taken to Janine and I am totally in awe and amazed at the resilience she is able to elicit from what anyone else would throw away. I think this auction is going to be so exciting!! Yea us . . . . Yea this community, . . . . yea for all the generous artists. . . . and yea for Deb’s inspiration and Doni’s actualization!

  9. Deb Segelitz Deb Segelitz says:

    What a spectacular piece! I love the care and sentiment that went into the beautiful design. The auction is off to a good start, I think!

  10. Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

    I’m certain there’s no way to do it, but I have an expensive ($3,000+), VERY heavy (360 pounds), commercial-quality treadmill that is just too large for my bedroom that someone might want to bid on and enjoy as much as I have. It was assembled on site and would probably have to be disassembled in order to move it. Just a thought . . .

    • Such a generous offer, but yeah, I can’t figure that one out, either. Whoever got the item would have to go get it (Redding or Fall River Mills?).

      • Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

        Fall River, of course. Were it in Redding, a moving company could handle the transfer. In fact, I was thinking of selling it, called a mover in Redding, and found it would cost at least $600 for them to come here and transport it to Redding. So it has stayed in my bedroom, allowing me to trudge away on it. At least my bone density results increase every year thanks to it, calcium, and Vitamin D.

  11. Avatar Janine Hall says:

    Thank you Doni. And just to be clear the reserve price is not the retail value. A pendant like this would probably sell for much more in Carmel or Ashland. But there is a minimum price is should go for or I will buy it back. I hope the Carr pendant finds a wonderful home.

  12. Joanne Snyder Joanne Snyder says:

    I have seen this piece of jewelry and I love it. Janine restored several of my pieces that were damaged in the fire and I will be forever in her debt. This may sound crazy, but to me, the pieces of jewelry I own represent people and events in my life. One piece she restored was a gift from one of my best friends and another was had equal value…..and a great story behind it. I’m so excited about this auction. I hope I have something to contribute soon!