Since first opening our doors, Era Design has specialized in custom design. We are unusual in that we handcraft all our jewellery. We do this because we love what we do. In an industry that increasingly reduces staff, outsources work and buys semi-finished goods from catalogs, we've done the opposite. We've hired more top-notch craftspeople, have expanded our workshop and invested in new technology to achieve the best results. Even so, at the heart of the process is twenty years of experience as designers. You can make something that isn't thoughtfully designed right from the start. We're not talking about simply doing a 3D mockup on the computer. We're talking about the ability to envision a wearable custom designed wedding or engagement ring from concept to completion — one that not only fits perfectly on your finger, but with your lifestyle. As time allows, this will be the first in a series of case studies we'd like to share. MISMATCHED INHERITED DIAMONDS OR COLOURED STONES I'd like to highlight a common scenario that custom design jewellers are called upon to find creative solutions for — mismatched inherited diamonds and stones.
This first post is something that arises every week: What to do with inherited and mismatched stones. Because origins of stones vary, most jewellery stores have guidelines on what they can accept — here is a link to our ethics page http://eradesign.ca/ethics/. Mismatched stones can be differing sizes, differing cuts, colours and shapes. Finding the best way for our clients to enjoy them is our goal. THE SOLUTION For this exercise, we will design several rings, a pair of earrings and a pendant — all with two diamonds that are different sizes. One is a .10ct and the second is a .21ct. How do you make something that you will love with these stones? In this case, you have three basic choices on how to proceed:
1. Use one diamond only save the second for another project.
2. Hide the size difference. Quite often, it is possible to disguise the differences between the stones with some setting tricks!
3. Highlight the mismatched stones.
This week we have focused on rings. Here are three distinct computer renderings of some design ideas. Please note these are not photos of finished work just CAD works in progress.
If budget allows, a great solution is to create two or more stacking rings in contrasting, but complementary styles and metals • Priced from $750* each depending on final ring size, metal choice and weight
This Edwardian style ring compensates for the size difference by utilizing different setting details for each stones. Vintage inspired bright cuts, lines of millgrain or hand engraving are perfect for this purpose • Priced from $1700* depending on final ring size, metal choice and weight and engraved details.
A timeless figure eight or infinity symbol is a sophisticated, clean and simple way to create a unified design that does not attempt to hide the disparity • Priced from $1150* depending on final ring size, metal choice and weight.
If you find yourself in the fortunate position of having multiple diamonds to work with, then you need to start with the basics. Before you speak with a designer, prepare yourself by thinking about what your tastes are and what circumstances you want to wear your new jewellery. Do you want to wear it every day or just for special occasions? Do you have a very active lifestyle? Can you accept an asymmetrical design, or must it be symmetrical? Many people bring in photos of pieces they like or send us links to their Pinterest boards. It's also helpful to try on a few pieces of jewellery, you may love it in a photo but another design may look amazing on you! Check back for our follow-up post or follow us on Instagram to see the next installment where we design some earrings and pendants. You can also sign up here for season newsletter to find out what's new at Era.
* Price to be confirmed upon order. Variance depend on final ring size, metal choice and weight, and finishing details such as engraving and millgrain.