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.