I have a jewelry tip for you today that may save you money and heartache. I'll share my latest project at the same time because I really like how it turned out :-) and it's the reason I have a tip to share.
The project challenge -- create a wedding band to compliment this unique and gorgeous white gold engagement ring:
This is the wedding band I made for the ring; a simple, matching curve of white gold:
And here is the set together:
And now for the tip.
There is a possibility the wedding band will tend to spin a bit on the finger, putting the curved part of the ring in the wrong position as it's worn. Because of this, I've suggested the rings be soldered together after the ceremony -- a common thing to do with wedding ring sets. This is not something I can do myself without damaging the stones, and I'll explain the reason.
So to get an estimate on the work to share with the bride, I visited two very well-respected, long established local jewelers who each have huge, beautiful stores. Both have high end jewelry and do their own bench work on site. Their responses surprised me -- hence, the tip.
The first store preferred not to do the work, BUT offered to try without guaranteeing the result, saying the heat might damage the stones. Yikes. When I asked about their process, they told me they use a flame torch similar to what I can affordably use at home. Why is that significant? Because in order to solder this way, both rings must be completely heated to temperatures well over 1000 degrees F. Some stones can survive that heat, but others definitely won't.
The next jeweler assured me the task would be no problem. Why? Because they use a VERY expensive precision welder. Jackpot! The rings are only super-heated at the bottom, where they are joined. No danger to the stones.
So when you need work done, ask your jeweler questions! Even the best skill isn't good enough without the right tools.
I'll close with the last piece of my wedding band project. This a keepsake pendant made from the gold left over from the wedding band, with Swarovski crystals to match the ring.
I'm still planning to post on Wednesday, so please stop by again!
Sue Lacy Wired
This began as a hobbyist's blog.
Over time it became a quest to support & connect metalsmiths around the globe who use foldforming techniques in their work.
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