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A New Ring From Family Gold

Sally lives on an island off of the north coast of Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 . She called Louise to discuss the logistics of us hand-making a ring for her, from her own family gold.

Louise was able to reassure Sally that we partner with a private courier company called Malca Amit; this means that we can offer different collection and delivery services to transport family gold and sentimental gemstones.

During their conversation Sally explained that she could send Louise some photos of her sentimental rings, she was also able to supply an image of a design inspiration for the style of ring that she was after.

Sally had three sentimental family rings. She wanted this old gold turned into new jewellery. One of the diamond’s was missing from her swirl-style ring, this left us with two different sized diamonds to work with.

Louise explained that these rings are very fine (thin) and that there isn’t enough gold here to make an entire new ring, that could house all of her gemstones.

Louise suggested that Sally’s sentimental gold could be used to form the band of her new ring, and that the settings and head (top part) could be created in CAD (Computer Aided Design) and then cast in new white gold, to complete her ring.

Our first job was to unset all of her gemstones to accurately measure them for the CAD design. Sally had four diamonds and one aquamarine. Her diamonds are all round brilliant cuts, and her aquamarine is square cut. Her two larger outer diamonds are different sizes.

Louise suggested using grain setting to disguise their different sizes. The white gold outer setting would be the same size, and the small grains would create texture that would lead the eye away from comparing the diamond sizes.

Louise showed Sally her first CAD sketch to check she had understood the design brief, and that Sally was happy with the overall design concept.

Sally liked the design, but she didn’t love it! The beauty of using CAD means that we can make design changes within the computer before any precious metals are cast. Sally asked for her central square aquamarine to be rotated 45 degrees.

You can see the difference this makes to the overall look and feel of this ring. Sally loved how this design now looked.

In the CAD images above, you can see how this design accommodates Sally’s different sized diamonds in the outer settings. Using this grain setting disguises her diamond sizes well.

When you look at a CAD image, it is exactly how the finished ring will look, (what you see is what you get) we can then 3D print a resin version from the CAD computer file. This is the grey version in the first image below.

A resin print is a great way for you to try your ring on and see a copy of it in real life, before it is cast in a precious metal. This gives you complete peace of mind, as changes can still be made to the computer design at this stage.

In the third image above, you can see how the grey resin print is exactly the same as the white gold casting next to it.

Once Sally was happy with her CAD design, we cast this for her in new white gold. The head of her ring and the settings are cast as one piece, this makes for a very strong profile.

Sally’s own sentimental gold was re-worked to form her band. Her gold was melted and poured back to an ingot. This is then hand rolled into a band, and soldered onto the head of the ring.

Mark did such an expert job of hand-making Sally’s band and of hand finishing this ring, he seamlessly fused her family gold with new. You cannot see where the join is.

The next job was to check the finger size was correct, and then for our stone setter to set her sentimental gemstones. Her square aquamarine is rubover set (also called bezel setting), this is where a fine ring or edge of gold is pressed or ‘rubbed’ over the outer edge of the gemstone, holding it in place.

Sally’s four sentimental diamonds are grain set; grains are tiny claws that are shaped by our stone setter to hold Sally’s gemstones in place. In this design we added a few extra grains to disguise the fact that her diamonds are different sizes.

It was time for this ring to have a final polish. Mark uses our polishing wheel to bring the white gold up to a high shine. With the outer gold gleaming, it was time to switch the large polishing mop for a fine bristle.

This finer bristle gets into all of the nooks and cranny’s , meaning that all visible parts of this ring was brought up to a high shine.

After passing a final quality control check by Louise, this ring was ready to be couriered back home! It was a complete delight to receive a photo of Sally wearing her new creation!

The finished ring is a combination of new white gold and old family white gold, fused together. It has a band that was made by hand, and a head that was created in CAD and then cast. Sally had two different types of setting for her sentimental gemstones.

This creation is a fusion of traditional Goldsmithing and modern day computer programming with 3D printing. We think the results are just lovely – and Sally agrees! – ‘It’s here, I love it. Thank you so much’.

Her diamonds are set with small claws, down into the outside ‘leaves’. There are two diamonds in each side setting.

I adore the overall vintage look and feel of this ring.

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