Our founder, Cindy Dempsey, shares her personal Fordite story:
"I came across my first pieces of this material in the mid 70's, when I was young. A friend of the family worked for american automobile manufacturers, and he brought a few chunks of this raw, hardened paint material over to the house. He called it 'paintrock'."
"At the time, I was into the pet rock phenomena, and was painting beach stones into psychedelic art objects with my Spinart machine, and having a blast making refrigerator magnets and paperweights out of them. I loved to make all kinds of things with found objects."
"As we lived a few blocks from the beach on Lake Michigan, there was always something to find there ... cool rocks, fish bones, beach glass, shells, pottery bits, industrial junk- you name it. It was a virtual treasure trove for anyone into 'found objects'."
"I had developed a love and fascination for mineralogy, and had begun really learning more about the subject while I was in school then. The thought that these beautiful chunks of 'paintrock' came from an auto factory, and not from the earth, opened a whole new line of thought for me and my art. These chunks didn't look like much, but when you cut through them, they sure looked organic, with those familiar stripes and concentric rings, just like real agates ... but the colors! Wow! Unreal ..."
"At that time, my favorite stone was malachite, which for those of you who know, is a soft stone with a delicious combination of banded and orbital greens. Much to everyone's dismay, I found some mild amusement in adding an extra 'd-i-t-e', 'l-i-t-e', or 'm-i-t-e' on the ends of other words here and there, just for the fun of it (Yes, I am a nerd). Subsequently, I came to name my paintrock, 'For-dite'. I thought it was funny, but it made sense too."
"I made some funky pet rocks, magnets, and pendants out of it, and sold every last one of them ... and my early love for this fabulous stuff was born ... Dy-no-mite!"
"Progressively, when I discovered that the general public had really opened their minds to accepting all kinds of materials and unusual items for use in jewelry, I focussed on collecting Fordite wherever I could. I knew how excited I was when I finished my first piece of art with it, so all these years later, I'm not surprised at the positive response I have received in offering it to the public in my finished jewelry."
"It was a natural inclination for my own use. True, it is not a real gemstone, but you can't beat gorgeous - and that is undeniably what Fordite is! Outta-sight! I was bitten by the Fordite bug, and I have loved it ever since!"
Our use of the descriptive term "fordite" in no way implies any relation to The Ford Motor Company. We are neither affiliated with nor endorsed by Ford or any of it's subsidiaries. We express no desire, nor do we attempt to represent our items as Ford Motor Company products. Our "fordite" inventories have been cultivated from many different manufacturers. "Motor Agate" is our registered trade name for this automotive enamel product.
Have you been bitten by the Fordite bug too? Can't get enough? If so, please visit our F.A.A. page.