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Photo and Fingerprint Heart Pendant

Marie wanted a large heart pendant made, she wanted it personalised with a photo on one side, and a fingerprint on the other. She lives quite far away from our Shaftesbury Design Studio, so she started her creation journey by booking a video call with Louise to discuss her ideas.

We agreed to create a piece that was a fingerprint engraving pendant on one side, and a photo pendant on the other side.

Fingerprints look lovely when they are laser engraved on silver or gold, Marie wanted yellow gold for her pendant. She had some copies of the fingerprint that she wanted lasered on there. She also had a selection of photos that she thought might be good for her pendant. She wanted some advice on what would look nice.

Marie wanted her pendant to be very large, she wanted the gold to be quite thick as well. Louise recommend that we create a CAD design for her to view, we offered Marie two different sizes of heart with different thicknesses of boarder.

Marie chose the larger version, she decided to set a diamond in the top of the heart and wanted some hair set underneath a clear stone at the top in the bail (the part that the chain slides through).

We 3D printed a resin copy to post to her (the orange version below), just to make sure the dimensions were correct for her. You can see the CAD (Computer Aided Design) photo-realistic images we showed to Marie, and the resin copy that we actually posted out to her.

Marie was thrilled with the resin copy and wanted us to cast this in yellow gold for her. She was undecided as to whether she wanted a plain black background to her photo pendant, or whether she should leave the guitars in place. Louise was able to show her what both would look like, and Marie decided to leave the guitars in place – we agreed, thinking this made for a far more personalised photo with real character and personality.

Casting a large flat piece like this takes exceptional skill. The size of this pendant is the biggest cast we can do in one piece. You can see the light texture that the freshly cast yellow gold has. We cast the setting for the diamond and the bail (the part that the chain slides through) as separate pieces. This is called a 3 piece cast; there are three individual pieces to assemble to create the finished pendant.

It took three days to file, sandpaper and polish this up to a high-shine with a mirror-like finish. Only when it was perfect could we start plotting out her engraving. You can see the actual fingerprint that we used for this engraving, the yellow proof (with the grid background), and the actual fingerprint engraving – shown underneath.

It took a few attempts to get all of the words exactly as Marie would like them. We always show a proof of the engraving before it is carried out, this way our customers can see exactly what they are getting.

At the proof stage, changes to the engraving are easily done, we can change fonts, enlarge or decrease the over size of the engraving, and we can choose to engrave the detail away, or the background away – leaving the details standing proud. In this case we engraved the details of the fingerprint away.

It took a whole weekend to laser engrave this pendant! Once the laser engraving was complete, we could start working on the photo pendant side of this piece.

You can see the photo pendant proof on the left and the actual printed photo on the right. Once again, what you approve in a proof is exactly what you get in real life afterwards. The photo pendants are made by fusing the photo onto the gold (or silver) and then overlaying the highest grade of enamel on the top. This protective enamel is scratch proof and water proof, it can be worn everyday.

Marie’s diamond was set into place and the hair was set underneath her clear gemstone. We hallmarked this beautiful piece and hung it from a solid gold chain.

It was a complete delight to be able to deliver this amazing creation to Marie, she was over the moon and very emotional when she received it. One side is a fingerprint engraved pendant, and the other side is a photo pendant. Her bail (the part the chain slides through) is double sided – with hair set on both sides under a clear gemstone. Plus one beautiful diamond set into the top of the gold border.

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