Monday, April 8, 2019

10 Famous Autistic People in History

This post is the continuation of #Puzzled with Autism campaign, which will be running until end of April as it was extended due to highly positive response and demand.

In the first case of autism, Dr. Leo Kanner used the term to diagnose a social and emotional disorder.  Though it wasn't until 1943 that “autism” was used as a diagnostic term, it is certainly not anything new. Indeed, history is full of people who many consider to be or have been somewhere on the autism spectrum. I have picked 10 famous people who most likely you know, but may not have known them as autistic.

Michelangelo (6 March 1475 – 18 February 1564) – Sculptor, Painter, Architect, Poet
Michelangelo’s artistic genius may have been a symptom of autism.  Michelangelo had obsessional behaviour, a fiery temper, and tendency to be a loner which could be signs of autism.   Michelangelo was also obsessive and followed repetitive routines.  If he did not follow these routines, it would create great frustration.   Michelangelo has been described as strange, without affect, and isolated, as well as being “preoccupied with his own private reality. Such characteristics, all of which were determined through dozens of contemporary notes and letters, are consistent with those with high-functioning autism and may have helped him become the creatively artistic individual he is famous for.

Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726) – Mathematician, Astronomer, & Physicist
Evidence from researchers at Cambridge University suggests that Isaac Newton had Asperger’s Syndrome. Newton isolated himself as much as possible and was notoriously awkward when it came to typical daily conversation. He was not good at keeping friends, and relied strongly upon routines. Lastly, there are a number of reports that suggest that he was often so focused on his work, that he went for days at a time without eating or sleeping.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791) – Classical Composer
Most scholars agree that musical maestro Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was somewhere on the spectrum. Mozart was allegedly extremely sensitive to loud noises, had a notoriously short attention span, and could fly through a cycle of facial expressions within seconds. In one well-documented incident, a bored Mozart began doing cartwheels and vaults over tables while meowing loudly like a cat.

Charles Darwin (12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) – Naturalist, Geologist, and Biologist
Trinity College professor Michael Fitzgerald, a leading psychiatrist, researched and published a paper concluding that Charles Darwin had Asperger’s Syndrome. There are records from Darwin’s childhood that state he was a very quiet and isolated child, who avoided interaction with others as much as he could. Like so many others with Asperger’s, he sought alternative ways of communicating, such as writing letters. He had fixations with certain topics like chemistry, but was a very visual thinker — all traits of someone on the autism spectrum.

Albert Einstein (14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955) – Scientist & Mathematician
Perhaps the most famous scientist and mathematician in history, Albert Einstein had a number of interesting and possibly telling characteristics. For one, he had trouble socializing, especially as an adult. As a child, he experienced severe speech delays and later echolalia, or the habit of repeating sentences to himself. And of course, there is the fact that Einstein was incredibly technical. Such characteristics have led many experts to conclude that he appeared somewhere on the autism spectrum.

Woody Allen (1 December 1935 – present) - American Director, Writer, Actor, and Comedian
Though it has never been explicitly stated that three-time Oscar winner Woody Allen is on the Autism Spectrum, both Allen himself and various experts seem to agree that that’s likely the case. The writer, director, actor, and musician is well known for his quirky ways. As Allen has stated, “I am a neurotic in a more benign way. I mean, I have a lot of neurotic habits. I don’t like to go into elevators, I don’t go through tunnels, I like the drain in the shower to be in the corner and not in the middle.”

Sir Anthony Hopkins (31 December 1937 – present) - Welsh Actor, Director, and Producer
On a list of the greatest living actors, Sir Anthony Hopkins would almost certainly be included. The actor, who won an Oscar for portraying Hannibal Lector in 
The Silence of the Lambs, has been diagnosed with high-functioning Asperger’s Syndrome (though Hopkins hasn’t said at what point in his life he received the diagnosis). When talking about the way being on the Autism Spectrum affects him, Hopkins says, “I don’t go to parties, I don’t have many friends, but I do like people.”

Temple Grandin (29 August 1947 – present) - Professor of animal science and autism Spokesperson
Temple Grandin, who revolutionized the livestock industry with her focus on the humane treatment of animals, was diagnosed with autism as a child. Grandin earned countless accolades, including a doctoral degree, and her life inspired an Emmy award winning HBO film starring Claire Danes. She is one of the first individuals on the autism spectrum to publicly share insights from her personal experience of autism. She also invented the "hug box" - device to calm those on the autism spectrum. In fact, Grandin is one of many women diagnosed with autism who have gone on to break down barriers across fields ranging from entertainment to anthropology. 

Susan Boyle (1 April 1961 – present) – Scottish Singer
In April 2009, Susan Boyle, a middle-aged church volunteer from a small town in Scotland, auditioned for Britain's Got Talent with her favourite song "I Dreamed a Dream"—and more than 200 million video views later, she had captured the attention of the world for her soaring vocals and humble personality. Though she didn't win, Boyle went on to release seven albums, including 2009's I Dreamed A Dream, which became the fastest selling UK debut of all time and skyrocketed to the top of the Billboard charts. The rise to fame came as a surprise to Boyle, who was often bullied as a child. It wasn't until she turned 51 that she was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome. Boyle has gone on to headline her own international singing tour, appear in everything from a musical based on her own life to Zoolander 2, and has even performed for the Queen.

Jessica-Jane Applegate (22 August 1996 – present) - British Paralympic Swimmer
When she was just 15, Applegate became the first British woman with Asperger's to win a gold medal at the Paralympic Games. She brought home the gold for the Women's 200m freestyle at the London games and went on to win three more medals the following year at the IPC World Championships in Montreal: gold in the 200m freestyle, silver in the 200m medley, and bronze in the 100m freestyle. Applegate dipped into a pool for the first time when she was just a few months old when her mother took her to a local swimming club. By age 10, Applegate began competing regularly, and she has gone on to shatter records, all while visiting schools and swim groups across the UK to share her inspiring story.

These are just a few famous people among thousands of talented autistic. Who do you find the most inspirational? Always happy to hear your thoughts in comments.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Autism Myth Busting

Our Autism Awareness fundraising campaign is running and the word about it is spreading. I'm delighted so many people responded to it and expressed their support. Here is our next blogpost relating to autism discussing the myths surrounding it.

There are so many myths circulating about autism it’s sometimes hard to be sure what’s true, or what autism actually is. But I think that Autism Awareness Month is the perfect time to correct some of people’s misapprehensions—so here’s a handy list busting some of the most common myths about autism:

Myth: Autism is a bad thing.
Truth: Autism isn’t bad or good - it is a condition. While there are some aspects of life that are harder for autistics to deal with, there are also some benefits and positive aspects.

Myth: Autism is an illness.
Truth: Autism is a condition that is present from birth. No one is quite sure what causes it yet, but they think genetics have something to do with it. However, it is most certainly not an illness and can’t be caught from vaccines either.

Myth: Autistic people are unintelligent/stupid.
Truth: Autism brings with it just as many exceptional abilities as challenges. Many people with autism have normal to high IQs and some may excel at math, music or another pursuit. Lots of autistic people have highly intelligent and innovative ways of thinking, just have a great deal of difficulty communicating with the world around them or little interest in doing so. You shouldn’t judge a person based on their autism, just as you shouldn’t judge someone based on their gender or race. And just because someone’s mind works in a way different to yours, that doesn’t mean they are stupid — instead, you could make an effort to understand.

Myth: Only men can be autistic.
Truth: Autism is more commonly diagnosed in men, but it is thought to be equally prevalent among men and women. The reason women are less often diagnosed because autism has traditionally been seen as an extreme form of the male brain, and have lots of male coded traits. Often, autism and women manifests itself differently, including social masking of autistic traits.

Myth: Autistic people are bad employees.
Truth: Autistic people are fantastically innovative and valuable additions to your workplace. They help bring in new perspectives and ideas. Autistic brains work differently, not worse, than neurotypical ones; employing neurodiverse workers can bring lots of fresh potential into your workplace.

Myth: Autism only exists in children.
Truth: Children with autism grow up to become adults with autism. Autism affects people of all ages. It’s previously been ignored in adults, particularly those who have grown up masking their autistic traits. Previously, if you got through childhood without being diagnosed, your autism would go unacknowledged. Now, however, there are more opportunities for late diagnosis becoming available, and many say finding out that they are autistic has changed their lives.

Myth: Autism is caused by bad parenting.
Truth: In the 1950s, there was a theory suggesting that autism was caused by mothers who lacked emotional warmth. This has long been disproved. So far there isn’t explanation what is the cause of autism.

Myth: Autistic can’t feel or express emotions
Truth: Autism doesn’t make an individual unable to feel the emotions you feel, it just makes the person communicate emotions (and perceive your expressions) in different ways. Autism often affects an individual’s ability to understand unspoken interpersonal communication, so someone with autism might not detect sadness based solely on one’s body language or sarcasm in one’s tone of voice. But, when emotions are communicated more directly, people with autism are much more likely to feel empathy and compassion for others. Also, autistic are able to learn ‘reading’ emotions and face expressions.

Would you like to add any more? Which myth affects you most? Share your views in comments.

And... another treat for you from our dedicated Autism Awareness Jewellery Collection -

 Sterling Silver Jigsaw Piece Stud Earrings


UPDATE - we have a winner!

Thank you all for taking part in my giveaway which was my first, but certainly not the last!  Keep checking my blog for more competitions coming.  

Silver Puzzle Piece Studs

Monday, April 1, 2019

Puzzled with Autism campaign

Raising the awareness through jewellery

It is an awareness campaign run by House of Silver to raise  awareness about autism. Autism’s complexity and the difficulties of dealing with it in modern society can make it quite difficult for many people to handle, whether it’s themselves or a family member who is affected.

About us 

House of Silver is an online family run jewellery shop specialising in affordable Sterling silver jewellery. We are also passionate inclusive employers with our own dedicated autistic staff, and autistic family members. We want to help raise awareness of and fundraise for autism, and we are doing this through our very special Puzzled with Autism campaign.

We’re proud of being a family with autistic members as well as employees, and we want to let the world know that it’s not something to be ashamed of. And it’s not just a token for one day awareness of the year. Autistic people are here. They are valuable. And they are around us. We want everyone to remember that.

Puzzled with Autism Campaign: Autism Awareness Jewellery Collection

We are excited to launch a dedicated jewellery collection that was specially selected and crafted by our team of designers. The inspiration came with the idea that so many people get puzzled with the autism just because they are not aware of it. This collection aims to draw non-autistic people's attention and provide them with awareness as well as support autistic and their family members. We believe that jewellery is a powerful mean of spreading the word. The puzzle piece has been chosen as the main symbol for a number of reasons: it is international symbol, it has versatile meaning which can be personalised and most importantly it shows that autism is a part of the 'big picture' where all of us are interconnected. We have also included awareness ribbon and infinity symbol to acknowledge a variety of autism perceptions.

But what makes this collection particularly important?

With lots of awareness campaigns, they take up one day of the year — but we’re here to remind you that autism is for life, and that we should be proud about it. That’s why we’re creating our awareness symbols from solid Sterling silver, making signs that won’t just be thrown away after one day. Moreover, we want to emphasise that our items are all special and valuable in themselves—just like everyone with autism. We hope that with them, we can promote being proud about being autistic.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Awareness Giveaway

Hello, all! Today, I have a super exciting announcement about something my colleagues and I have been working on for a while, and to top it off, there's also an exclusive giveaway to share. It feels like I've been sitting on this news forever, so I'm glad that I'm the one who finally gets to reveal...

The 'Puzzled with Autism' Awareness Campaign

Over the past few months, we at House of Silver have ben working on a very special project. We've been keeping our cards fairly close to our chest, but now, with a week, to go, we are thrilled to finally reveal our Puzzled with Autism Campaign.

Puzzled with Autism is a campaign we're running for World Autism Awareness Week, which takes place 1st-7th April worldwide. Autism is a topic that's very close to our hearts, and we're looking forward to sharing more about it and the campaign in the coming weeks. But for now, there are only a few things you need to remember: House of Silver are launching an exclusive Autism Awareness Jewellery Collection to celebrate and raise awareness of autism in all its forms.

The collection and campaign are officially launching on the 1st April, so make sure you come back then to take a look at the complete range. But for now, we're giving you an exclusive preview of some of the solid Sterling silver jewellery that's available--and we're treating you to a giveaway while you're at it.

 Autism Awareness Silver Ribbon
The Awareness Ribbon is a universal symbol that is not exclusive to autism, but celebrates all difference and diversity across the board. That's why we've picked this clip-on charm to give away to anyone who wants to show their support for a family member or an important cause. You can clip it on to a bracelet, necklace or even clothing in a way that I think is beautifully symbolic.

If you're too impatient to wait a week, you can check out some sneak peaks of what we've got on offer on our official Autism Awareness page and enter the giveaway for our the Awareness Ribbon. We'll open it up on the 1st April to include the highlights of the collection, including some beautiful and specially designed Autism-specific awareness jewellery, so make sure to add that to your calendar. There will also be more giveaways, exciting blog posts, an announcements--keep you eyes peeled!

For now, though, spread the word, and enjoy this exclusive giveaway.


To enter, all you need to do is follow the instructions on this handy form.  The competition is running from 25th March to 1st April and is open to UK residents only!  Good luck!

Silver Awareness Ribbon Charm

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Blogger Rewards

Calling all bloggers, writers, and jewellery lovers!

Since we’ve become a more active part of the online jewellery community, we’ve come aware of all the different ways that bloggers and jewellery businesses work together to make our community a better place. That’s why we’ve put together this rewards list for all the hardworking bloggers out there, with things that you can do to take an active role in the industry, while at the same time snagging some brilliant deals and freebies for yourself at House of Silver.  By working with us, your readers can benefit from discount vouchers/codes and also FREE valuation service provided by our shop.

  • Link to us. It’s not much, but this sort of thing really helps — a simple "do follow" permanent link will do. And in return, will give you a special gift: you’ll get the same amount of credit at House of Silver as your DA (Domain Authority) score. How's that for a sweet deal?
  • Reviews: if you’re interested in any of our mouthwatering collection of solid Sterling silver jewellery, then this is an easy way to get your hands on some. Write a review for us and we will send you item of your choice for free! And if that’s not enough, you’ll also get an extra bonus on us: 2.5 times as much credit as your DA score.
  • Reviews plus competitions: all of the same terms as a simple review, but additionally, for this you get an extra item completely for free in order for you to run a competition on your blog. Competitions like this are a great way to generate traffic for your blog — and we'll be providing the prize at no cost for you. 
  • Spread the word: spread the word about this exclusive offer for bloggers so others can share the reward! If you link back to us, we'll give you 2 times the amount of credit as your DA score.

Those are just some of the simple ways to get access to all our exclusive deals and blogger rewards at If you're interested, simply pop us a line at, and get ready to enjoy your rewards!

*To be eligible for the offer, your website's Domain Authority must be 25 or higher, or, have high number of visitors on your website..
**Reviews must include 'do follow' links and the website must be UK based.
*** Free items eligible for reviews and competitions must be under £25 original price.

Sunday, March 3, 2019


Pinch and a punch! March has come around, and not a moment too soon. The birds are singing, the trees are budding, and I for one am more that ready to welcome in the spring. If your weather has been anything like mine, you'll have been enjoying the glorious sun we've been blessed with. While it's a little unexpected, far be it from me to complain--in fact, I thought I'd celebrate with a giveaway of this Tree of Life necklace, which I've cheekily picked out from our newest stock at House of Silver 😉.

 Tree of Life pendant
The Tree of Life is an ancient symbol of rebirth and new life, with roots in mythologies as diverse as old Norse and Ancient Egypt. It symbolises strength, growth and knowledge, representing a return to our roots as well as hope to grow into the future. I love it because it puts something as transient as spring into an immortal symbol that's lasted for millennia. With spring springing into the world, it's the perfect time of year to add this to your wardrobe!

Tree of Life Pendant
This necklace is a personal favourite of mine. There's a lot of Tree of Life jewellery out there, but not much of it is this elegant, usually tending towards a more 'festival' style. This one, however, is gorgeously sophisticated - perfect for distinguished evening wear.


To enter, all you need to do is follow the instructions on this handy form. The competition is running from Friday 1st March to 15th March and is open to UK residents only. Good luck!


UPDATE - we have a winner!

Thank you all for taking part in my giveaway which was my first, but certainly not the last!  Keep checking my blog for more competitions coming.  
And for those who really liked this necklace here's a special treat - 25% Off this necklace valid for next three days (until midnight 18th March 2019).  To receive the discount, enter code  TOL25 at the checkout.
You can find the necklace here.

Tree of life necklace giveaway

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Jewellery Secrets Q&A

The jewellery world can be confusing at times, so I've taken the chance to answer a few commonly asked questions. If you have any more, ask me in the comments or pop an email to!

Related image

Rhodium Plating - what does it mean?

Rhodium Plating is used mainly on pieces made from white gold (usually 9ct or 18ct) to give the jewellery a bright cold white colour. This is because natural white gold is not white; because it contains gold, which is naturally yellow, it has a yellowish tint. Rhodium plating gives it the characteristic white shine that is more appealing.

Rhodium plating is very thin and applied with electroplating (which only takes  few seconds!). Unfortunately, this means it wears off, particularly in the places where it is handled or where it touches clothes or other surfaces. The only way to solve this is through re-plating, a service which is offered by a few places - but overall, if you want your jewellery to stay that colour, you're better off going with platinum or palladium.

How do I clean my jewellery/stop it from tarnishing?

In general you need to take care of your jewellery and not expose it to any harsh environments or be careless. You should always remove any rings for household chores, for showering, or if going to the pool - exposure to sulphur or chlorine is bad for silver and will quickly tarnish it. Silver is more reactive than gold, and tarnishes more easily, so you should keep it from chemicals of all kinds, even perfume - remember to apply perfume before you put on your jewellery to reduce contact. 

As for cleaning jewellery, there are lots of tips and shortcuts online - a polishing cloth is one of the best investments you can make to clean lightly tarnished silver, or silver dips for more affected items (however it needs to be noted that not all items containing gemstones, like pearls, shells, etc. could be treated with dipping solutions). 

What is a carat?

A carat actually has two meanings:
  • Gemstones: when talking about gemstones, carat is literally a measurement of weight. 1 carat is 1/5 gram.  So, 5 carat diamond weighs only 1 gram and costs thousands of pounds.
  • Gold: when applied to gold, carat refers to quality and purity. It indicates the ratio of pure gold to the whole mass of the alloy. Thus 18ct gold contains 18 parts of pure gold out of 24, and 9ct gold contains only 9 parts out of 24.

Is diamond jewellery a good investment?

The long and short of it: no. Diamond prices are hugely inflated, meaning that they're very hard to resell; you would be lucky to get more that 1/4 of the original price. It may be pretty, but diamond jewellery's greatest value is sentimental - it's nearly impossible to sell it on at anything over scrap price.

How much is my jewellery really worth?

Of course, every piece of jewellery is different, and there are no hard and fast rules. But you can usually estimate the actual value with a few insider tips, such as those found on our bargaining blog post

And if you want more info, House of Silver offers free valuations for any and all jewellery - definitely something to consider before splashing out on that pricey engagement ring!

End of Autumn Competition

Competition is now closed. Congratulations to the winner - Claire from Yorkshire! As usual, choose one prize from below and enjoy thes...