Sending Elements

All new orders will now include the cost of a kit. We will send these usually within a week of receiving your order and they will include the return address. This may be longer over the holidays

Don’t send it all in case it’s lost in the post or we need you to send more!

Feel free to send us a photo of what you have so we can advise you how much to send. You can send it on our Facebook page or on our Instagram.

cremation ashes

adult and pet ashes
We promise we will have absolute respect for your loved one’s remains and return any amount that is unused. Half a teaspoon in the little pot we send is plenty for most pieces, at most 2/3 of a teaspoon for a family order and we can always request more if necessary. Ashes from two or more people and pets can be combined, but if you prefer to send them separately please let us know their names so we can send a separate kit for each. Please never send all you have just in case, and we may need to ask for more from time to time. You are more than welcome to bring in person, we have studios in Bristol and Nikki is in South Wales at least once a fortnight.

*Trigger warning*
baby ashes
If you are sending in your baby’s ashes we require even less. Ashes from miscarried and stillborn babies and younger children are often quite dark, like volcanic sand. We will do our best to get the colours in your memorial jewellery right but please remember that each piece is unique. See our baby loss jewellery page here for more info and a gallery.
stillbirth hair, cord and placenta
We have instructions on our baby loss jewellery page that help you to know what to ask for. It’s important that anything we work with doesn’t have formadehyde or other chemicals on it, and that cord and placenta are frozen ASAP. You can show your midwife the page and gallery or the people who are caring for your baby after they have passed away.

lock of hair and fur

We try to only use 1/3 of what is sent, leaving room for us to do remakes if we aren’t happy with how the pieces turned out. You are required to keep back some hair or fur to send us, just in case it’s needed. You can tie the hair with a bit of cotton thread to help keep it together, but NO SELLOTAPE please. Place it in the small labelled orange pot and then the bag and return according to the instructions.

If you have a lock from somebody who has passed away, feel free to send us a photo on our Facebook page or on our Instagram so we can advise. We might only need a quarter of it but sometimes ask for two thirds.

Children
example of the ideal amount of hair to send for lock of hair and fur keepsake jewellery from Tree of Opals
With a comb, section off a thin slice of hair at the back of the head and weave in and out. Then cut a few of the strands at the root, so as not to get a bald patch. You can send us some of your baby’s first curl or hair from the first haircut. If your child is having their first haircut, ask the hairdresser to remove some hair as if they were doing a colour strand test (they will know what that means) instead of sending the split ends, it’s easier for us to work with if possible.

fur
example of the ideal amount of fur to send for lock of hair and fur keepsake jewellery from Tree of Opals
This is an ideal amount of fur to send us but you must keep some back in case we need more. If you only have a small amount please send us a photo on our Facebook page or on Instagram before posting and we will advise you. The shiny, outer hair is easier for us to work with and gives the best results, although we can work with downy underfur. A lock the length of a finger is ideal, but we will do our best with shorter hair… please browse the galleries on all of our lock of hair pieces. If your companion is with the vet after being put to sleep, you can ask them to take an amount for you. Show them this page if you like, so they know you need enough to keep back and enough to send us.

horse hair
We are happy to work with mane or tail but will only need a few short strands, the finer they are the easier they are to work with. Please don’t send strands longer than the width of your palm. If possible please wipe each strand with an alcohol wipe or a little vodka on a cotton wool ball, or pop a note in with your kit to say you would prefer us to do that for you. It keeps the hair looking its best inside the resin.

umbilical cord and placenta
Just one piece of your cord stump, 1cm of dehydrated cord or one capsule of dried placenta is enough. Do not send the whole cord, just cut off a piece the size of an orange pip. You may send by signed delivery. Please use a small pair of scissors to remove a little at the end. Place it in the labelled pot then bag and return according to the instructions in the box.

breastmilk
We recommend you store an ounce of milk in your freezer until your kit arrives. There’s a guide to expressing here; please send around 15ml (1/2oz). Nikki suffered chronic low supply following breast surgery and knows this might sound daunting but please get in touch to discuss your options. If you’re worrying your supply is going down then express and freeze as much as you can straight away and keep adding to it a few times a day.

Flowers
Dry your petals with some cornflour (corn starch) in a warm area. Only send a portion of what you have, a few petals is enough for any piece. We can always ask you to send us more. For delicate flowers please use a small plastic tub (a clean moisturiser tub or takeaway container is great) layered with cotton wool or bubble wrap, add your full name and order number then send this in a box as a small package.

Prints with the Inkless Wipe Kit

Follow the instructions in the package and watch this video for information on taking fingerprints, nose prints, handprints, footprints or even taking noseprints and pawprints from pets or hoofprints from a horse. If your loved one is in the care of a funeral home, we ask that you get in touch first as it may be time sensitive to get the kit to them. If you have just delivered a baby they will often be able to take prints for you at a hospital.

You must add your full name and order number to all elements to adhere to our strict procedure for keeping elements separate!

Posting

  • The address for sending will be added to your order when you confirm you have read these instructions, just tell me about how you have packaged your elements. Log in at My Account to view your notes and see the FAQ’s if you don’t get the automated emails.
  • Please designate what you’re sending as “Jewellery Making Item” (you may struggle if you are too specific about what you’re sending!)
  • All responsibility for sending lies with you, but we’re happy to advise. There is always a risk of items getting lost in the post so please only send a portion of your elements (e.g. half a lock of hair) and keep the other half. If your item is not labelled we will do our best to identify it but if there is any doubt (e.g. two lots of ashes unlabelled) we would ask both clients to send again properly.Within UK
    Please post everything except breastmilk by whichever method you prefer. Again, don’t forget your full name and order number on the elements (not on a separate letter) and \ kits will include a Royal Mail first class large letter stamp and mustn’t be sent SD/signed in case we miss it. We prefer to work with fresher milk if possible.

    International clients
    Please choose the service you would like to use. For breastmilk we recommend no more than a week; even sour breastmilk works great with our method! If the services you use requires a signature please let us know when it may arrive so we can make arrangements to receive it, especially with breastmilk. For customs you are sending “jewellery making items”, which is the truth, but you may struggle to find a suitable provider if you are more specific. Please do not give a value of more than a few dollars/pounds otherwise we will need to pay import duty (VAT) and you will be invoiced – your elements are extremely valuable but not expensive!
    You don’t need to spend more than around $15USD and if the service costs more than that feel free to contact us. All responsibility for sending lies with our clients.

    you can view at My Account