Winding through the steep cobbled streets and whitewashed houses with red tile roofs, you will pass many white WV beetles zipping people around the mountainous village of Taxco - Mexico's silver capital.
When arriving into Taxco, I was taken aback by the sheer number of people dedicated to creating exquisite silver jewellery in such a variety of designs. Not one to waste an opportunity I spent some time with master silversmith - Gustavo, who taught me how to craft a silver ring. I passed the blow torch section without any casualties. But using the electric sander was obviously beyond my capabilities, as my new silver band shot off across the room with a 'ping'. At least I gave Gustavo and his daughter, Betsa a good laugh.
They showed me the whole process, from melting the silver into a mould, annealing (keeping the silver soft using heat), filing, hammering and then polishing to make the finished piece shine. I was left in awe of his expertise and his love for this age-old craft. With 34 years of silversmith experience, Gustavo truly is a master who could create beautiful pieces with his eyes closed.
Taxco has had an abundance of silver for hundreds of years, though the local people have not always benefited from it. Spending time there and feeling the passion the artisans have for the craft makes me honoured to play a small role in helping to support some of the silversmiths dedicated to creating beautiful silver jewellery.
Don't worry, the ring I made is not for sale - it's only for me. But you can see some of the incredible pieces created by the master silversmiths of Taxco in our collection below.