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  • Size matters !

    I was talking to a customer last week about the subtleties of volume and proportion when it comes to wedding bands. Quite often when it comes to mass-manufactured bands the makers are very conscious of the weight of the band in terms of the retail price point and the cost of the material. Therefore by common denominator, bands tend to be dictated by width and will be as thin or shallow as possible in the height off the finger, usually ranging between 1.3mm and 1.6mm deep. But I have even seen rings that I have repaired which have been 0.9mm to 1.1mm !
    To go the opposite way, if you leave a small fraction of extra depth, it can have a considerable effect on the feel and heft of the ring. We really like to make our standard rings a minimum of between 1.6mm and 2.0mm deep. You would be surprised how little extra it takes to make an appreciable difference and also how short a time it takes wearing something for your hand to assimilate the weight and become accustomed to it.

    It reminded me of a wedding band I made last year. This was really simple, but very effective, and a really gorgeous feel. It is 3mm deep and has a very pronounced curve on the inside and is a real statement of simplicity. As soon as you pick it up you know that it is something special.



    Our tip is never to scrimp on weight if you can manage it, especially with wedding bands. After wearing it every day for 20, 30 or 40 years, you won't regret it.

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  • Embrace no:2 part 2

    just got a sumptuous new photo taken by Trevor Harte of Embrace 2, which we previously wrote about here.
    It was part of a shoot for our listing in a new site dedicated to designers and craftspeople in the capital; DesignerDublin.ie


    There is going to be lots of events happening over the coming months as part of the Year of Craft 2011.
    The World Crafts Council AGM will be in Dublin Castle in the first week of June.
    One interesting talk that I'll be definitely going to will be "Lunch With The Masters".
    Paul Costelloe, Peter O'Brien & Deirdre McQuillan will give a talk on June 10th at 51 St Stephens Green from 12.30 to 2pm. You can book a place here while they are still available.

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  • more pink sapphires

    There is something I really like about pink sapphires,

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  • Embrace 4

    Another set from the Embrace series.
    This one was built around the starting point of a very large and beautiful Topaz. It is a very stunning cut; a flat top with a broad girdle and concave facets underneath. It was a very deep stone so was going to sit quite high in a ring. We really wanted to respect the minimalism and cleanliness of the stone and didn't want to detract from the gems impact/impression. At the same time we wanted to play with the idea of the extra ring providing a wrap-around or colour accent to change the emphasis when worn together.


    The main ring is in white gold to compliment the clear Topaz, and is very geometric and crisply defined.
    The second ring is in yellow gold with a channel of Pink Sapphires to add a contrast of warmth and softness.
    The height of the Topaz actually ended up being a good thing as it allowed the yellow and pink line to climb and wrap around the setting without over powering the main focus or detracting from the centre of the composition. It really works in the flesh as it is being worn, so from different angles you get different glimpses of colour peeking out past the shards of white light.





    And it is always nice to play with the idea of a ring from one side of the finger crossing over to the other side. An artist friend of ours has used a principle of off-setting printed colours in his work so you get a slipped line of colour along the outline of a shape. I am always reminded of that effect when I see these rings put together.



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  • Little Back Ring 3

    This is another of the series "Little Black Ring".
    It has a large Hematite, again facetted, along with a border of 1-pointer white diamonds, and a border of 1-pointer black diamonds. It is in 18karat white gold, which we have left un-plated.



    I love framing the negative space around the culet of a gemstone, even if most of the time you don't get to see it.




    Rather than coating with a Rhodium finish like most of manufactured jewellery, we have left the ring with the natural colour of the white gold. This is something that we do a lot and something that I may post about in greater depth at some point in the future. There is a warmth to the colour tone of 18karat white gold which can compliment a lot of jewellery and gemstones instead of artificially masking it to look brighter, and then having it erode and wear off.
    This is a good example, I really think that the white gold compliments the subtle warmth of tone in the Hematite, which has a very slight metallic green hue to the "black".

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  • New Titanium Ring : Gaia 1

    Hot off the press, a brand new ring using brand new technology.
    This is a design that we have made previously,
    (it is actually a variation on Sé's own wedding band).
    Up until only a few weeks ago, something like this would have been virtually impossible, or at the very least prohibitively expensive. Technology is moving so fast now, and when we hear about what is happening it makes us drool with anticipation of what we can do and what it makes possible.





    This ring has a continuous, unbroken pattern covering the entire inside of the ring.
    It has a flat outer surface, measures 6.8mm wide by 2mm deep, and the inside is a pronounced curve (an inverted D-shape).



    This use of pattern originally came to us as an inspiration from looking at how suits and tailoring would have very understated external presentation, while having something of a flourish or sumptuous detail on the lining. This approach allows us to be very decorative, whilst still having a finished ring that is wearable every day and understated.  This pattern was across the wedding bands and was also applied to a wedding set of cufflinks, bracelet and pearl catch.





    We love finding these details that personalize a persons jewellery. Every one has a story.
    The titanium ring is on sale here

    The titanium printing is done over here;
    their blog is very informative and a good resource for hearing about what is happening in technology innovations;
    & their site;

    At our talk that we gave in Trinity during last years Innovation Festival, we touched on emerging production methods and the gap in application between the process, the initial idea, and the technical finishing and surface quality. We think that now more than ever it is relevant to have hand skills and some knowledge of traditional technique in order to properly realize the potential of one's ideas.
    For anyone who is interested in the debate on technology and craft check out these links;

    ps: Gaia was one of the titans from greek mythology, and Klaproth named Titanium after them in 1791.

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  • Solitaire

    Simple alterations of a small parameter can change the look and feel of a ring substantially. Here we have a variation on the elegantly minimal solitaire that we posted previously.
    Changing the shape of the centre stone naturally suggested a "push" through the side wall and gave a lovely new detail to the side of the ring.



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  • How little is just enough ?

    As the antithesis of the previous post, how much can a design or shape be reduced so as to perform it's function, and still be refined, or elegant, or have integrity as a design?
    We asked ourselves how much could a diamond ring be reduced to a pure form? How many steps in designing and making a ring were adding degrees of complication that could be removed?



    So working from a plate of metal, why would/(should) we need to build any additional structure when it is possible to set the diamond directly into the plate?
    This sets the diamond sitting at a 90degree angle, facing out (or in if you want to look at it yourself). Interestingly, it actually works quite well, the diamond is really no less visible than in a classic position.
    We considered bending the plate so that the stone would appear upright or in its "correct" position, but this was nicer and cleaner I think. The other direction is a ring that is still there to be made.
    Another thought was to shape the outline of the plate to be an egg shape and to flow from the base of the finger to the top of a centered diamond, like an orbital outline. Again that is another ring for the future, here we decided in the end to play with the purity of the plate and the assymetric offset of the stone to sit neatly in the corner.
    In the end the only concession that we made to the structure was to place a round bar at the rear of the aperture for the diamond, this guards the culet (point of the diamond at the base) from getting damaged, and also happens to nicely frame the culet and draws attention to the negative space around it. Where it is possible and appropriate to do this, it makes a beautiful detail.
    I think it is always a sign that someone cared about the making of a piece of jewellery when they frame another aspect of the gem.





    On the reverse of the plate we decided to matte finish to highlight the polished edges and bright front.
    This gives it a subtle orientation and helps guide the viewer as to how to read the piece, and which is the intended back and front. The back at the base also was the natural place to hallmark as a visible detail.


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  • Embrace no:3

    Another ring from our Embrace series,
    It was a breath of fresh air to cut loose and make something extravagant.
    We thought we would have found the limit of how high a ring would be to be unwearable, a curious goal to pursue in itself, but were again delighted to find the enthusiasm and reaction of people when they put it on their hand.




    A ring for a diva.


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