Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The offspring of two beloved designs

My customer had fallen in love with the Amazing Amethysts and the Silver Flames ring here:

Since she lives in my vicinity, she grabbed the opportunity to take a real life look at both and just couldn't decide. Luckily, both were too big, and so I suggested to her that I created her very own, special version. Together, we arrived at this drawing:

It is, as you can see, the general shape of the Silver Flames, but using the sister from the Amazing Amethysts (I bought them as a pair) – and adding a few golden balls. Here is the process:

I split the ring shank in two in one end and cut the other to a slender tail, before filing and curving the whole thing. Here the basic ring is done

The main stone is rather high and in spite of trying to make a bezel which was as low as possible, there was a danger of the whole design tilting. Hence I had to work quite consciousely with various levels for the other parts of the ring in order to outbalance the primadonna. When soldering, that is a challenge! The solution is trying to build various supports using bits of soldering mat. Here you can see how I piled up some pieces in order to solder the small tube setting in just the right hight.

After the first soldering, fitting two of the small tube settings and the main tapered bezel, I carried on to attaching the last tube setting and the balls, again supporting here and there and trying to make it all fit into one go. The less often you solder, the less risk of something re-opening that was supposed to stay closed is my philosophy. I prefer to avoid soft solder and even though I have extra soft solder, I have never used it. It's not as durable and reliant as the hard!

Well, this is what it looked like after all the soldering. Now for cleanup and polish before setting

And here is the final result. Please forgive the less good photos – they were quickly taken in my kitchen before handing it to my customer. It's allways slightly nerve wrecking to do that and allways a relief when they love it – as was the case this time too.

Phew ;-)


  1. Gorgeous as usual!!! I love your soldering mat trick, I'm forever finding strange things to prop things up with and would love something small that doesn't present a heat sink. Where did you get it?
    Also, would you be offended if your rings 'inspired' me to try splitting a shank of double half round?

  2. Sikke dog nogle vidunderlige smykker du laver:-)

  3. Thank you Clarity and Hanne :-)

    I just use some of the soldering mat that I am soldering on already (I have a few used and broken ones) and cut them into pieces with my saw. It's very easy and somewhat brittle to work with, so you can basically shape anything, unless its very tiny. In this case I had just sawed very thin slices off and broken them into pieces.
    And by all means: I didn't invent the split ring shank design. That is a classic seen already in bronze age jewelry, so can't take credit for it. I'm looking forward to seeing how your version comes out!

  4. Ohhh Karin I adore your rings ~ they just amaze me ~ maybe one day I will own one ;) They are very ethereal looking with an organic look which ~ as you know~ I love lol!!!

    What is the mandrel shape solder ~ I haven't seen those before ??

  5. Thank you Jo :-)
    The mandrel soldering peg is homemade from the same mat as I created the small bits for support (and what the whole thing is rested on). Keine hexerei - very simple to work with. You don't use this for soldering? It's very lightweight and a tad brittle...

  6. Skønne smykker du laver....
    Der er kommet flere af dine ting på min ønskeliste(-:

  7. So I tried to copy you today, which just illustrates our earlier discussion about plagiarism. I saw your method, liked it, and set out to make it my own, and believe it or not THIS was what came out you would never in a million years know it started with your work, lol, but it did! I was kinda annoyed b/c it also looked nothing like I intended it to, so I tried again and got this Still nothing like your work, much more me than you.

    Anyway, just found it amusing and thought I'd share :D

  8. I rushed to see your rings Clarity, and they are so lovely!
    I'm touched, really!

  9. love the rings! your work is beautiful!