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Hand-cut Snowflake Topaz with Rubies

Penny’s Snowflake Topaz was hand-cut by our Lapidary Artist Martin, and set with special cut bright red rubies!

Penny had seen a snowflake blue topaz that our Martin had hand-cut for a different customer of ours. She wanted a slightly different cut to the one Martin had created before, with some special cut rubies incorporated into her design. This was because this ring was a 40th Ruby Wedding Anniversary present from her husband. These rubies would also be hand-cut, to fit into the recesses of her topaz exactly.

You can see a rough stone layout above, and then the first design with claw setting. Penny chose a rubover-style setting in the finish, you can see the difference between the first design and the 3D printed resin copy below.

Here are videos of Penny’s Snowflake Topaz in the process of being hand cut by Martin, our Lapidary Artist. Hand cutting patterns into gemstones in an exceptional skill that takes years of study and training to get right. You can see how a lump of rough blue topaz is transformed into a sparkling gemstone. Martin starts by cutting the Pavilion Facets – these are the individual sides to the bottom half of the stone. The widest part is called The Girdle, the Crown Facets – the ones on the top, are cut last.

One of the great advantages of being able to use CAD (Computer Aided Design), is that we can show photo-realistic images of the final piece. And we can 3D print a resin version from the computer file. Louise posted a 3D printed resin version to Penny for her to try on; this was to ensure she was happy with the fit and feel of it. Penny wanted to wear this ring alongside another sentimental band, so it was important to ensure the two rings fitted together perfectly.

Penny was thrilled with her final design! It was now time to cast her ring in 18ct yellow gold. You can see this rough cast; there is a slight texture on the gold from casting that needs ‘cleaning up’ and polishing to a high shine. This ring was cast in two pieces, this makes cleaning up and polishing easier. Often, there are small parts that are difficult to reach if the ring is cast in one piece. The next steps were to solder the two pieces of Penny’s ring together, and then to finally set her stones.

Once Penny’s Snowflake Topaz was hand-set by our Paul, more 18ct yellow gold was lasered onto the main setting, this enabled him to set the rubies into their pointed settings, and push the gold over the edges to keep them in place. This was one of the most complicated setting jobs we have undertaken. This ring has the illusion that the topaz and rubies are just ‘resting’ next to each other – but there is a complex structure underneath to hold all of the gemstones in place.

Here is Penny’s finished hand cut snowflake topaz, with special cut rubies, in 18ct yellow gold, – a truly bespoke ring, crafted for their 40th Ruby Wedding Anniversay!

You definitely won’t find another ring like this one!

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