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Finding My Thrill at the Glass Slipper Lapidary Studios

Posted by Christine Barbour on

(All finished stones cut, drilled or polished by Pete Ehret, The Glass Slipper Lapidary Studios)

I have had a box of wonderful, edgy, curious, and funky rocks for a couple of years now that I haven’t exactly known what to do with.  Some of them were almost ready to be worn – they needed only a slice or a polish to let the light in.  Some just needed a hole drilled.  Some were intriguing as heck but I just couldn’t figure out what to do with them.


So what I did was toss them into the “Pete Box”– a carton of rocks that I have always intended to mail to Pete Ehret at the Glass Slipper Lapidary.  Pete has a magical way with rocky rocks – he sees the right angle to polish and the right side to leave rough. His stuff is gorgeous and I am addicted.


So I kept adding to the box until it got too heavy to contemplate the postage.

And there it sat.

Then, a few weeks ago, for reasons that make no sense under close examination, we had to drive from Bloomington, IN, to Austin, TX. 

The Glass Slipper is an hour from Austin and I couldn’t pass up the chance to meet Pete and Susan in person after doing virtual business with them for years – plus I wanted to see the place where they create all their gorgeous stuff.  So the Pete Box went into the car with us and off we went.

It is always a comfort to know that the people you have come to like and admire online are really the people you think they are. Pete and Susan are wonderful. He is incredibly talented and self-effacing, a patient teacher and a funny guy.  She bubbles with enthusiasm and hospitality and jewelry-making talent of her own.  Meeting them was a total pleasure.

We went through the “Pete Box” stone by stone and he created some masterpieces on the spot, showing me carefully what he does and talking through the process. 


We sorted and polished and debated and drilled, all rocks, all morning.  Susan made a Spanish potato tortilla lunch and it was a very perfect day.

Almost as perfect was the day just over a week later when the Pete Box was shipped back to me, full of treasure.  I was a kid again,on Christmas morning, unwrapping each amazing  piece, and dreaming dreams.  I have had to put the jewelry business aside for a while due to another pressing project and I was looking for some inspiration to jump back in.  I found mine at the Glass Slipper. 

Thanks, guys.  I really needed that.


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