Last summer I took part in the well-known Whiteknights Studio Trail in Reading. During showcasing my work on the trail, I met Kate, a local who has a huge appreciation for craft and contemporary design. Kate really liked my modern aesthetic, and that I was a local jeweller who also worked to commission – we exchanged details as she was keen to discuss using some inherited diamonds for a bespoke piece of jewellery.
Towards the end of the year we met up to discuss some ideas and I began to sketch up some designs for how we could use Kate’s diamonds she’d been given by her Mum. Kate had a lovely selection of round brilliant cut diamonds of varying sizes that she wanted to use.
We settled on a sporadic set full eternity ring in 18ct yellow gold, to contrast and stand out from Kate’s current platinum rings. However, soon into the design process we had to press pause as Kate and her family had put an offer in on a house and it was looking good for completion.
Nearly a year since our first meeting (unfortunately after one failed house move for Kate, and with my first baby due in about 8 weeks time), Kate got back in touch to get the ball rolling again. We arranged to meet once more to discuss the design ideas in more details, including the layout of the diamonds, and to check the dimensions and size requirements. Kate also had lots of old, unloved silver and gold jewellery that she was keen to scrap in to go towards the cost of making the new ring, so during our meeting I was able to weigh it to then work out its scrap value. Using old and unloved jewellery towards a project is a great way of recycling and financing the project, helping to produce a piece of jewellery you’re really going to love and wear.
Once the final design had been confirmed and after I had some figures for the scrap jewellery Kate was happy to go ahead.
With this design and the tight timeframe (with baby vw on the way) I went straight into gold. As with all the bespoke designs I create, I try to work with Fairtrade or recycled materials wherever possible. For Kate’s ring I acquired recycled 18ct yellow gold to produce the ring, and of course her inherited diamonds.
The first step was to make up the shank in gold, and meet for a fitting before it could be hallmarked and the diamonds to be set. After a little sizing adjustment, the chunky gold band was then sent to the London Assay Office for hallmarking. On its return it was flush set with Kate’s diamonds and finished with our signature satin surface.
I’m pleased to say the ring was completed and delivered 5 days before baby vw arrived, and Kate was thrilled!
Though, about 6 weeks later Kate got in touch to explain she’d lost a diamond from her ring! Upsetting but unfortunately common with jewellery, especially with full set diamond rings as they are a more delicate design. After discussing the loss of the diamond Kate decided that the full eternity design might not suit her and her lifestyle so well, and asked if it would be possible to make the full eternity into two half eternity rings. With this design, and some more gold it was possible and I remodelled the one ring into two half eternity rings in the same style.