The League of NH Craftsmen 37th Annual Ornament


Hand crafted by Katherine Rudolph

The League’s 37th Annual Ornament, Unfolding, was created by metal jewelry artist Katherine Rudolph, of Merrimack, NH. Inspired by architecture and the  geometric repetition of origami, Katherine developed this stylized reindeer ornament which has been cast in pewter. 

After moving from Nashua to the dream home she designed and built in the woods of  Merrimack this past year, Katherine was greeted with an array of ever-changing wildlife. The glint of an eye or the flash of a tail was often the most she could glimpse of New Hampshire’s abundant, yet ever elusive, white-tailed deer. 

Allowing the possibilities to unfold and employing her favorite metalworking techniques,  Katherine began designing the 2024 ornament with paper models. These paper models translate well into thin gauge sheet metal, which she then scores and folds. “This is a  favored technique as it allows for voluminous, crisp, geometric forms through which I  explore the possibilities of pattern & repetition.” In line stylistically with her jewelry, and with a nod to elements from both her Leaf and Sail jewelry collections, the face of the deer took form and the antlers emerged with architecturally inspired elements from her Origami collection. From lightweight sheet metal, the ornament was cast in pewter. Through a delicate process of adding and carving away, she was able to give balanced weight to each ornament. Honoring her namesake, Rudolph, a light catching, high polished nose completes the designs minimalist and elegant aesthetic.  

The 2024 League ornament comes gift-boxed and sells for $26. This annual offering is an annual fundraiser for the League that helps support local artists and affiliated League Fine Craft Galleries. The ornament is a thoughtful keepsake to mark any special occasion, milestone, or holiday. Each of these cast pewter ornaments, which capture the light with a flash of silver, is hand polished, numbered and inscribed by the artist.

About the Maker: Katherine Rudolph 

Katherine was raised in New Hampshire, and some of her fondest memories are of time  spent at the Annual Craftsmen’s Fair during summers at Lake Sunapee. She graduated from the Jewelry and Metalsmithing Department at the Rhode Island School of Design  (RISD) in 2009. It was not until 2017 that she finally took the leap, scheduled a jury session, and was accepted as a member of the League. 

About the Annual Ornament Program

Since the program began, in 1988, the League’s Annual Ornament has become a New Hampshire holiday tradition. Each year, juried members of the League submit a piece to be considered for the Annual Ornament competition. Their work is reviewed by the managers of the eight League of NH Craftsmen Fine Craft Galleries, and a winner is selected. Now in its 37th year, these ornaments have become a holiday collectible and a must-have holiday treasure.

About the League of NH Craftsmen

The League of NH Craftsmen is a non-profit, craft education organization that represents the signature of excellence in fine craft, through the work of its juried members, and its rigorous standards for self-expression, vision, and quality craftsmanship. Its mission is to advance, cultivate and champion excellence in fine craft. The League pursues this mission through educational programming, leadership initiatives, marketplace strategies and support services.

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