This customer wanted a vintage look with hand engraving for this remounting of her sapphires and diamonds. I love using stones with sentimental value in new designs. It can carry on memories and stories.
I have really enjoyed learning hand engraving techniques. It has always fascinated me. I hope to continue to learn and explore this facet of jewelry making.
We stepped up the quality of the classy engagement ring with VS clarity stones and 14k super white gold that does not require rhodium plating.
I carved the wax model and used round burs that were slightly smaller then the stones being used. The reason why is because I knew that I was going to redo the micro prongs once it is was in metal.
I had to make the halo 3 times to get the right combination of size of diamonds to number of diamonds to go perfectly around.
I cast the pieces separately so I could nicely polish the gallery before assembly. I set the diamonds in the mounting. I stuck the blank halo in shellac to hold the piece while I set the stones. I sanded and polished it up and soldered it to the mounting.
I cut the bottom off a thick basket head and polished up before soldering it in place. I set the major stone and gave it a final polish.
This ring’s princess cut diamond channel has worn out.
The points of the princess cut stone is quite sharp and can break.
I laser welded a square wire to the end of the channel. I filled in, with the welder, as needed. No gold solder was introduced, just 14k white gold.
This ring was a fun challenge. Since most of the work of stone setting and graving is done in metal, it would seem that the wax carving would have been easy. However, keeping good symmetry was very challenging. I did most of the carving under 6x magnification.
I used tacky wax to stick the diamonds on the wax model to plan out the bead setting and to show the customer.
Because of all the cut outs, the wax required extra sprues to ensure a complete casting.
After I cut the seat for the center oval, I used dividers to score evenly spaced marks on the bezel. Then I used a jeweler’s saw to cut through the bezel. The hammer hand piece seemed to effortlessly move each little prong over the girdle to tighten the diamond. Whereas with a solid bezel, the tends to be a lot of hammering.
Thank you Fred from Uncommon Design for the nice bright cutting on the bead set diamonds.
I get to enjoy challenging myself making jewelry for the show case sometimes. This one was pretty fun. I started with carving two identical bands, cast them up in 14 karat yellow gold and micro bead set 1.3mm diamonds. The assembly of the different length bars came next. Each one was cut to length and soldered in place. Lastly, the bezel set 3/4 carat round brilliant cut diamond was set then laser welded in place.
I carved the wax model of this engagement ring to match the existing wedding band that was her mother’s. Using her stones, this new ring carries all the sentimental value and it looks like these two rings were made at the same time.
The issue with this ring was that the halo was sharp and catching. The solution that we came up with was to add a wire frame to the halo. The stones would be more protected (a few missing) and the edge would be smooth.
I laser welded 20 gauge white gold wire from the bottom which kept clean lines from the top view. I made the bottom seamless where the ring looks like it was made this way to begin with.
This custom remount pretty much kept the same classic design as the original (not pictured) but the goal was to do a more lighter, feminine version in white gold. The micro prong set diamonds helped lightening up the feel of the ring from the original bulky 3 channel design. We also opened up the shoulders of the ring to make it more airy. We did a cool square shank and cast it in super white 14k gold alloy that does not need rhodium plating.
We refinish rings to like new condition all the time. But I always love refinishing an engagement ring right before the wedding day. It is rewarding to make it look it’s best for that special day.
This classic platinum ring required some prong work and needed to be totally repolished for the big day. Instead of sanding out the light scratches and small dings, I used a tungsten burnisher to move and manipulate the malleable metal back into the dents. Much less material is removed. And the best part, the surface becomes harder when you work the surface with the burnisher, which makes it more scratch resistant.
Here are a few of my favorite custom tanzanite rings that I made.
This bad boy started with a 12mm wide platinum band. I added two platinum “tree trunks” to support an 18k yellow gold trillion bezel that floats above the ring. I was always amazed how heavy this ring felt. Platinum is considerably more dense then gold.
This irregular shaped trillion tanzanite had awesome color. It screamed in this super white gold mounting.
Tanzanite also looks fantastic in yellow gold.