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Finding Inspiration: Platinum At Its Finest

For many, Stuller’s precision die-struck platinum findings are the perfect way to show off its extraordinary beauty and strength. We offer die-struck findings that include a selection of settings and shanks for the perfect rings as well as earring backs and posts. Platinum’s excellent qualities make it the ideal choice for jewelry. When you understand its qualities, offering platinum in your stores makes a lot of sense. 

platinum die struck findings

Heirloom Quality 

The durability and density of platinum means that it will weigh the same in 50 to even 100 years as it does today. This makes platinum an ideal family heirloom that future generations can treasure and enjoy for years to come.  

Naturally White 

With platinum, you never need to worry about plating your pieces. Its color won’t change over time. It’s the hallmark of authenticity. As a bonus, platinum is hypoallergenic. When you purchase platinum products made by Stuller, they come with the benefit of being certified by SCS Global Services for having 100% recycled materials.  

Strength 

Platinum provides maximum security for diamonds and gemstones. Whatever metal your customers are trying to choose between for a shank, suggesting a platinum head to secure their stone can be the best recommendation. 

2000339:1004:S 311:47418:S

For more selling tips or any additional information about platinum, visit Stuller.com/PlatinumBenefits.




ever&ever® Features the Allure of Platinum

Ever&Ever Feature in The Knot Fall Issue

The Knot’s fall issue has hit the stands with the beautiful Jenna Dewan gracing the cover. In this sustainability issue, you will find the latest advertisement for ever&ever® in our ongoing campaign with the prominent wedding industry publication. This advertising opportunity provides one of many benefits to ever&ever® retail partners and is perfect to help promote engagement rings for upcoming fall proposals.

ever&ever® and The Knot

The Allure of Platinum

In collaboration with Platinum Guild International, the ad image features a three-stone style, oval-shape diamond engagement ring set in platinum (124157:412:P) along with its matching band (52052:412:P). The ad speaks to the strength and desirability of platinum, which is an exceedingly popular metal choice for securing diamond center stones.

124157:412:P 52052:412:P

While the rings featured in this advertisement campaign are platinum, all ever&ever® engagement rings are 3C flexible styles. This means that the metal quality, center stone size, and shape are all customizable so a bride can have her perfect, one-of-a-kind ring.

To shop these styles and more from Stuller’s comprehensive in-case bridal program, visit Stuller.com/ShopEverAndEver.

Why ever&ever®?

National advertising campaigns that expand the brand recognition of ever&ever® are only part of the many benefits of being a retail partner. Check out some of these other amazing perks.

High Quality and Customizable Styles

Whether you choose the Core Bridal Program, the Comprehensive Bridal Program, or you build your own program, the styles within ever&ever® feature high quality and customizable designs that allow you flexibility in creating the perfect ring. To keep your assortment fresh, we offer two product enhancements every year that each include six new styles.

Marketing Support

From ready-to-post social media content and hi-resolution imagery to print materials and signage, we provide our retail partners with everything they need to connect their customers with ever&ever®. We also maintain a brand website on EverAndEver.com, where your customers can explore the full product offering within ever&ever® and easily find you with our Find a Retailer listing tool. Finally, we offer e-commerce solutions that allow you to integrate and embed the EverAndEver.com interface into your website.

Influencer Marketing

Other than our current advertising campaign with The Knot, ever&ever® has also been featured in the popular wedding industry blog Wedding Chicks. We are always looking for unique opportunities to increase brand awareness and lead customers to your business.

Rapid Delivery

Delivery of ever&ever® styles comes with the same standards and quality you’ve come to expect from Stuller. We make sure you have the live styles you need as soon as possible with next-day delivery of all in-stock items and swift production of customized pieces.

Become a Retail Partner Today!

You become a retail partner as soon as you purchase the Core Bridal Program, which features 29 pre-merchandised prototype samples — all 3C flexible designs and best-selling styles. There are three other popular programs that allow you to receive retail partner benefits as well.

To learn more about the ways you can become a retail partner and to get started, visit Stuller.com/EverAndEver.

ever&ever® is your all-in-one solution for helping every bride create her own story. As fall begins and the holiday proposal season approaches, trust Stuller to be your bridal business partner in helping couples find rings they can cherish forever and ever.




Tie the Knot with ever&ever®

If you look at this season’s issue of The Knot — one of the nation’s most prominent wedding industry publications — you will see a familiar brand showcasing pieces you know and love. We have recently begun an advertising partnership between The Knot and our comprehensive bridal selling solution ever&ever®. 

“The Knot Magazine has strong consumer rapport and a substantial footprint in the wedding industry,” says Randi Bourg, Stuller’s director of marketing strategy and operations. “Couple that with Stuller’s constant drive to deliver the best in product assortment and quality and you have a natural partnership that makes perfect sense.” 

You can expect to see the ever&ever® brand continue to make an appearance within this publication throughout the rest of 2021, introducing a unique advertising opportunity for our ever&ever® retail partners. 

Crafted For Everlasting Love 

The advertisement itself features a stunning image of a popular accented halo-style engagement ring (124443) with matching band (124444). These rings are accompanied by a half round stepped edge wedding band (HRE8.5).

124443 124444 HRE8.5

While all of our ever&ever® designs complement any metal quality, we kicked off this campaign highlighting the durability and strength of rings made with platinum in collaboration with our partnership with Platinum Guild International. 

Senior director of bridal Alex Stuller explains the demand for platinum. “Platinum is naturally white and will never fade or change color over time. It’s naturally hypoallergenic, has a weighty feel, and holds diamonds and gemstones more securely than any other metal. People appreciate platinum due to its strength and rarity, which makes its value long-lasting,” Stuller explains. 

She further describes platinum as a metal that is perfect to be passed down through generations. “Even if you’re unsure about everything else in life you know platinum is going to last forever,” she said. “We take this precious metal and make it into an heirloom.” 

How does this benefit our retail partners? 

This advertising campaign provides several benefits to our ever&ever® retail partners. Primarily, the greatest benefit is the increased brand awareness. 

“Exposure in publications like The Knot develop brand awareness and desire. These advertisements put ever&ever® in the spotlight and drive foot traffic into ever&ever® retailers. We create demand through these publications and our retail partners take it to the finish line to make the bride and groom’s dreams come true,” says Stuller. 

In anticipation of increased demand for this brand, we are supplying our retail partners with marketing materials to help display the connection between their inventory and the major wedding publication feature. Retail partners can access these digital and print materials on the Marketing Asset Library

Create Your Own Story 

ever&ever® celebrates every bride and groom taking control of their narrative by building the rings of their dreams. Our retail partners play a key role in helping them tell that story. 

You can shop the advertised styles and more on our website right now. Start building your customers’ dream rings at Stuller.com/ShopEverAndEver




A Quick Look at Platinum Metal History

Platinum Metal History Blog Header

Today, we take for granted that platinum is a coveted precious metal. But how long have we actually known this? Only since 1751 — a mere 270 years. By comparison, Ancient Egyptians began using gold and silver to decorate sacred objects around 3,000 BCE. And from 2551 BCE to 2490 BCE, they capped the Pyramids of Giza with solid gold, the ultimate sign of the metal’s importance and value. So we’re curious about platinum metal history. Where was platinum through all this time?

Shop the Stuller Platinum Jewelry Lookbook

Incognito Platinum Metal

Platinum metal history slipped into human use as a by-product of gold and silver mining. Gold was found with platinum and the two blended as they were hammered into shape. Platinum was thought to be silver — even though it was much harder. Chemists have identified platinum mixed with gold in items dating back to Egypt’s Middle Kingdom (1991-1718 BCE). One example is the gold and “silver” cover on the 700 BCE Egyptian Casket of Thebes. An early examiner noted that while some of the silver was heavily oxidized, curiously enough, other “silver” was unaffected. In 1901, French chemist, Marcellin Berthelot, tested the metal and learned that the untarnished silver metal was a combination of platinum, iridium, and gold. 

White Specks and “Little Silver”

Across the Atlantic, archaeologists discovered Pre-Columbian sacred and decorative pieces made of gold with distinctive white specks. These were identified as platinum. In 16th century South America, Spanish conquistadors searched rivers and streams for gold and silver the Spanish King so desperately needed. In the process, they found chunks of platinum. Alas, they called it “platina,” meaning “little silver” and discarded it with no idea it was rare and valuable.

Platinum Metal History Grain

A Hard Fact

To call platinum “little silver” is insulting enough and that isn’t the worst of platinum metal history. In 1735, Antonio de Ulloa, a Spanish scientist, naval general, and explorer, visited Ecuador on a scientific mission. He encountered “platina” in gold mines where it was considered a gold “impurity.” Some thought it was “unripe gold,” and put it back in the mine or ground to “ripen” believing it would yellow with age. Intrigued, de Ulloa undertook to study it. He identified platinum as a separate metal that occurred with gold in alluvial deposits. Indeed, Ulloa found it extremely hard and invulnerable to heat which made it almost impossible to separate from gold nuggets. He observed that platinum was a “nuisance” or “hindrance” that interfered with gold mining. The Spanish abandoned some gold mines with high concentrations of this “nuisance.”

Precious Platinum Metal

In 1751, Swedish scientist, Henrik Scheffer, published the results of his platinum studies. He called it “white gold” and stated that it was —

1. hard but malleable with the hardness of malleable iron.

2. a precious metal with durability and corrosion resistance similar to gold.

3. unlike any of the six “old metals” because it is entirely precious containing no copper, tin, lead, iron, or mercury. Scheffer declared it a “seventh metal.”

4. fusible with arsenic.

Platinum Metal History Sheet Stock Findings

Workable? Well . . .

In 1786, Francois Chabaneau, a French chemist working for Charles III of Spain, developed a technique for creating somewhat workable platinum but the results were highly inconsistent. At one point, a story says he grew so frustrated with platinum that he trashed the lab given him by the king. That same year, Antoine Lavoisier, “the father of modern chemistry,” succeeded in melting tiny quantities of platinum, but not enough to work with.

Who Is Marc Etienne Janety?

Monsieur Janety was Louis XVI’s Royal Goldsmith. He created a platinum and glass sugar bowl for the king whose beauty caused Louis XVI to famously declare that platinum was “the only metal fit for kings.” In 1794, a year after revolutionary government executed Louis XVI, Janety prudently left Paris. In 1796, he returned to create the revolutionary government’s official kilogram and meter measures out of platinum because it was the most durable and corrosion-resistant metal.

Pure Platinum

Above, I mentioned Chabaneau’s efforts to create workable platinum. The results proved inconsistent because he didn’t realize that platinum ore contained other platinum group metals — osmium, iridium, rhodium, and palladium. In the early 1800s, an English chemist, William Wollaston, found a way to produce pure platinum on a commercial scale. He kept his technique secret until just before his death.

Platinum Metal History Findings Diamonds

The Heat Is On

In the waning years of the 19th century, new high-temperature blowtorches made it possible to work platinum into fine jewelry. Cartier in Paris and Tiffany & Co in New York took the lead, making platinum jewelry a status symbol. Many famous stones are set in platinum — including the Hope Diamond — are set in platinum. Nothing less will do for beauty, strength, purity, and natural white color.

Platinum Metal Strength

Today it holds its status as the elite precious metal chosen by celebrities. It has also become the symbol of the exclusive credit cards, programs, and so on. Yet thanks to advances in technology and techniques — not to mention that its price per ounce is significantly lower than gold — platinum is available to many more customers and very popular in bridal rings. Can anything match the platinum solitaire?

Platinum Metal History Findings Grain

Platinum: The Hypoallergenic Metal

Over the decades, we’ve learned much more about platinum. One discovery stands out: it’s hypoallergenic. This makes it a prime consideration for customers with sensitivities to nickel and copper.


Shop platinum and platinum jewelry on Stuller.com

 




What’s the Deal with Palladium Prices?

Palladium Prices Blog Header

Do you know how much palladium costs per ounce? If you answered “no,” you’re like most of us. It’s not a big a part of your business, but you appreciate it as a less costly alternative to platinum. End of story.

Whoa! Let’s back up.

 

As I write this post, palladium is $1318/oz while platinum is looking great at $815/oz.

You read that correctly. Palladium is $500/oz more than platinum. I found out about rising palladium prices the other day when I asked our Metals Product Manager, Katelyn Garrett, a question about palladium. Her answer referenced palladium prices and its significant rise over the past few years and that it was more expensive than platinum and gold. That got my attention, and I went back to my computer to see for myself.

As noted above, the evidence was striking.

Palladium prices metal wire grain

Investigating Palladium Prices

Curious to understand what was happening to palladium prices, I reached out to Harold Dupuy, VP Strategic Analysis, and Belit Myers, VP Compliance Inventory & Info. Both emphasized that the major contributor to the increase was the auto industry’s growing demand for palladium to use in catalytic converters. That’s probably not news to many of you, but here are a few details that account for palladium’s strong demand with no clear end in sight.Palladium Prices Rings on Tree

  • China’s growing demand for vehicles fueled by 1.4 billion people
  • The change from diesel engines, using primarily platinum in their converters, to gasoline engines, which mostly use palladium
  • The switch from cars to trucks/SUVs whose bigger engines need more palladium

On the supply side of this equation:

  • Palladium is a by-product of nickel and platinum mining. Prices of these metals drive investment in new mines.
  • Palladium can be recycled from the autocatalysts.
  • Some electronics (TVs and computer monitors) contain palladium that is subsequently unrefinable.

 

Where does palladium’s supply/demand bottleneck leave the jewelry industry? That’s simple. For now, choose platinum. At $815/oz, it’s a higher quality jewelry metal at an attractive price.




Stuller’s Top 5 Platinum Questions Answered

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What’s not to love about platinum? It’s the densest of the precious metals, can stand up to a lifetime of everyday wear, and is even hypoallergenic, making it a perfect pick for any bride. Take the time to become a platinum expert. As you master working with platinum, you can also teach the merits of why it may be the better choice for your customer’s lifestyle, earning trust and ensuring a return to your store.

Here are a few popular platinum questions answered–

platinum questions answered smelting grain

1. What is the melting temperature of platinum and popular platinum alloys?

Here is one of our top platinum questions answered:

Pure Platinum: 3215°F (1768°C)

Pt950/Ruthenium: 3236°F – 3263°F (1780°C – 1795°C)

Pt950/Cobalt: 3015°F – 3050°F (1657°C – 1677°C)

Pt900/Iridium: 3236°F – 3272°F (1780°C – 1800°C)

2. Which solder should I use?

Platinum melts at a high temperature, which may cause diamonds to frost over when exposed to such extreme heat. Because of this, we recommend that all stones be removed when welding or soldering with platinum solder on a platinum ring.

When Joining Two Platinum Metals:

  • Platinum iridium to platinum iridium – weld
  • Platinum ruthenium to platinum ruthenium – weld
  • Platinum ruthenium to platinum iridium  – weld
  • Platinum cobalt has a lower melt point than platinum ruthenium or platinum iridium, it cannot be welded to either PtRu or PtIr
  • If gold is melted into a platinum surface, remove the gold with a ball bur and fill it with platinum wire

Tip: When in doubt, solder

3. What type of fuel do I use when working with Platinum?

Propane or natural gas is the best option for working with Platinum. These fuels burn cleaner and will not contaminate your platinum. Acetylene fuel is not recommended.

platinum questions answered torch

4. Should I use flux?

Avoid the use of flux when joining platinum alloys. However, flux may be used when joining platinum alloys to gold alloys.

5. Which sandpaper grit is best for removing dents and scratches from a platinum ring?

360-400-500 abrasive paper


A few tips and tricks:

Try using Redi-Prongs® Platinum Round Retipping Kit to retip prongs around certain colored stones and diamonds. Simply flatten the surface of the prong that you want to retip using a small file. Then, heat the area and attach a prong cap (Redi-prong comes with pre-applied solder). Polish the prong and you are done.

What people don’t always know is—

Platinum cobalt sticks to magnets due to its cobalt content. It should be kept segregated from other bench sweeps. Also, a magnet can be used to determine if a platinum jewelry item is made from platinum cobalt. The Cobalt in the Platinum Cobalt alloy tends to oxidize in a blueish hue, which could result in a blue tint to the overall piece.

Polishing tip

When polishing jewelry that has both platinum and gold components, be sure the platinum is polished completely before polishing the gold. Gold polishes faster than platinum, so it is easy to over-polish the gold portion and ruin the piece.

platinum questions answered polishing

Did you know: We use three different types of platinum here at Stuller—

Pt Alloy

Casting

Fabrication

Die Striking

Machining

90Pt/10Ir Satisfactory Excellent Excellent Poor
95Pt/5Co Excellent Good Good Good
95Pt/5Ru Good Excellent Excellent Excellent

Laser Welders like the Rofin Basic XE-Power 100 Joule (14-0110) are the best for working with platinum, saving time for your shop and increasing productivity, capabilities, and profits. This investment will pay for itself in no time.


Find more tips on working with platinum here.

Anything we missed? If you have a question, let us know in the comments below. We’ll work to help you get the answers you need.




A Step-by-Step Guide to Working With Platinum

working with platinum blog header

Platinum in its finished state is an absolutely beautiful metal. It can also be a little tricky when working it due to the softness of the metal. Knowing what tools and techniques to use can make the job a whole lot easier.

 

Here are a few things you need to know about working with platinum.

First Thing’s First

The first step is knowing which platinum alloy you are working with. Platinum/cobalt,
platinum/ruthenium, or platinum/iridium. Each alloy has its advantages and disadvantages. Platinum can be a soft metal as far as finishing goes, platinum/iridium being the softest of the 3 mentioned above. Platinum/cobalt is the hardest of the three as cast.

If you’re not sure of the platinum alloy there are a couple of ways to check, one being the stamp. Platinum/cobalt and platinum/ruthenium may be stamped just PLAT, or Pt950, whereas platinum/iridium should be stamped Pt900. Of the cobalt and ruthenium a simple magnet can distinguish between the 2. Cobalt is slightly magnetic. Use a magnet to tell if a ring is made of a platinum/cobalt alloy.

Choose Your Tools Wisely

It’s important to have the right tools – burnishers, platinum sand paper in several grits, rubber wheels, and ceramic stones ext. A list of tools is at the end of the article. It is also a good idea to keep a separate set of tools just for platinum to prevent contamination, and make polishing the platinum easier. Another tip to a beautifully polished piece is to make sure to pre-clean the grit from the piece after prepping, leaving the dirt and grit on the piece can transfer to the buff making it difficult to get the high polish results without a scratchy looking haze on the piece.

Let’s Get Started

If you have a vibratory tumbler with stainless steel shot (pins, balls, and diagonal Stainless steel shot) tumble the piece for at least 20 minutes. This will shine up the areas that are hard to reach as well as work hardening the metal, making finishing the platinum a little easier to work with. If you don’t have a tumble, you can burnish the piece using a flex shaft and a tungsten-carbide burnisher or by hand using a hand burnisher. Burnishing the piece will save time when removing the scratches from the prepping process.

Round out the piece first to make sure you don’t end up with flat spots when you removethe sprue. Sand the inside with a sanding cartridge. The coarser the sand paper, the harder it will be to remove the scratches (keep that in mind). Remove the sprue, using a diamond wheel or belt sander, again the coarser the tool the harder it is to remove the scratches. Use a deburring wheel or a buff stick to smooth the surface, and remove any rough scratches. By using several grits, and stepping up the grit will make polishing that much easier.

working with platinum polishing
working with platinum polishing

Now that the shank is prepped, let’s get started on the head area. Remove all unwanted surfaces on the head using a rubber wheel and/or bullet rubber wheel in the areas that are easy to get to without changing the shape of the prongs or the bearing. You may have some rough texture that you’ll need to work with a ceramic stone. I use an ultrasonic polisher for this, but if that’s not an option you can use a pin vise to hold the ceramic stone. Once you have removed all the rough surface with the ceramic stone go over that area with radial bristles, start with the red radial bristle than go to the blue radial bristle. This will make head polishing a lot quicker.

 

Now, let’s work the gallery. Thrumming in the gallery can create a high polish just as beautiful as the rest of the piece. For this, you can use precut slurry sheets in different grits or a platinum sand paper in the different grits (make sure to cut the strips to fit the gallery opening).

Time to Polish

Let’s start polishing! You’ll polish the head area first using a soft mm, geza brush, or end brush and the luxor red polish. The luxor red is an aggressive polish, so you want to be careful not to over polish. Then you will polish the inside, using an inside felt polisher and the luxor red. Polish all scratches out (if you’ve taken the necessary steps with the sand paper cartridges this should go quick). Then you will polish the outside of the shank with a hard buff using a firm stitched buff and the luxor red, then follow with the Avivor polish. Lap the sides of the shank with a lap machine or a knife edge felt wheel (this looks like a felt rubber wheel) using a flex shaft and the luxor red again. Now let’s final buff. For this you will need a soft muslin buff and Avivor or Oras polishing compound. Polish the entire piece until all scratches have been removed. Make sure to work the head, sides and shank to a high polish.

When Soldering

Use safety precautions to protect your eyes, by using a #5 or #6 rated welding safety glasses should keep you safe from damaging your eyes while soldering on platinum. When soldering platinum it is very important not to contaminate the platinum. Always make sure the piece is clean of any oils, dirt and polish before soldering, and by keeping separate tools used solely for platinum (solder pads, ceramic tweezers, tungsten picks, etc).

working with platinum soldering

It’s also important to note that it is not recommended to use boric acid mixture or flux when soldering platinum. For assembling a head to a shank a 1500 C repair solder is recommended, soldering a peg head to a shank or an earring post to an earring a 1200 C repair solder is recommended, for sizing a 1700C solder has the best color match and there is less of a chance of solder erosion. Use natural gas/oxygen, propane gas/oxygen or hydrogen/oxygen when soldering platinum. When using a water torch make sure to disable the water feature on the torch. Do not use Acetylene gas when soldering platinum, it’s the dirtiest of all the gases and full of contaminants. Now that you have soldered your piece finish the platinum with the steps from above.

Tools & supplies for working with platinum

Flat 1200 Grit Red Ceramic Stone

        21-1205          1200 Grit Ceramic Stone

Aluminum File Handle 4"

      37-8790        Ceramic Stone Holder

        11-6063            Blue Medium Flex Rubber Wheel

     35-1234       Sheenus Neo Ultrasonic Polisher

White Knife-Edge Silicone Pre-Polish Wheels 7/8"x1/4" - Pack of 10

        11-8140          Knife-Edge Polish Wheels

3M® Radial Bristle Yellow Disc 3/4"

        10-9100, 10-9101              10-9102              Yellow, red, blue radial bristles

Polishing Cloth Strip Assortment 216 Sheets

       10-8343      Polishing strips

18-0516, 18-0518 Tungsten-Carbide Burnishers

3M® Tri-Mite Pre-Cut™ Abrasive Paper 500 Grit (20 Micron)

       11-0747            3M® Tri-Mite Abrasive Paper 400 or 500 Grit

       47-3224           Luxor Red Polish

Soft Miniature Mounted Brush 5/8" OD, 3/32" Shank

    16-7050, 16-7051   Soft White MM or End brushes

Merard AVIVOR Polishing Compound

          47-3223         Avivor Polishing Compound

Yellow Treated Muslin Wheel Buff, 5", 3 Row, 60 Ply

         17-5560          Yellow buff

       47-3224           Luxor Yellow Polish

Purple Treated Muslin Buff, 5", 3 Row, 40 Ply

         17-7253          Purple Buff

Merard ORAS Polishing Compound

       47-3225           ORAS Polishing Compound

Finex Combed Muslin Buffs with Leather Center 5" / 50 Ply

         17-7722          Finex Muslin buff

10-6091, 10-6094     320 & 800 Grit Cartridge Rolls

      11-8182      Silicone Inside Ring Cylinder

Abrasive Board Kit

      11-3430       Abrasive Board Kit


Do you have any tips for working with platinum? Tell us in the comments section below.




High Fashion. High Concept. Highly Creative.

Congratulations to Travis Withers, a member of Stuller’s award-winning jewelry design team who won Best in Show at this year’s Platinum Innovation Awards at JCK 2015. This year Stuller’s design team submitted several designs ranging from a mix of bridal and fashion. But there can only be one winner, and the judges loved the intricacies of the diamond pendent. Congrats, Travis, and all who participated!

Take a look below to see what Travis says about his award winning piece. And read about what inspired other Stuller designers.

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Screen Shot 2015-06-01 at 9.41.10 AMWhen presented with the opportunity to work in platinum, a metal known as much for its complexities as its luster and durability, I was inspired to create something that would test its limitations while exploring its strengths. I’ve always had an interest in dome architecture, particularly the lamella styling. While creating the domed structure, I found myself exploring the patterns that emerged when the two domes were positioned opposite of one another, and after much experimentation, what I had finally achieved was a perfect vault formed by a delicate almost lace-like shell. The opposing pattern seen from the front of the pendant just beckoned for a little texture and glimmer, so I added a light spray of pavé-set diamond melee to really create a bit of pop.

In architecture, domes are often the celebratory moment of a structure, and I felt that the piece needed a focal point to really give the design some presence. After initially working with a pearl and ultimately deciding that it was a less harmonious pairing than I’d originally thought, I decided that nothing less than the majesty of a diamond should be placed at its oculus.


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Screen Shot 2015-06-01 at 9.34.16 AMHaving access to the finest metals, gemstones and diamonds, one can’t help but find inspiration in two such beautifully proportioned pear-shape diamonds, one white and the other a contrasting intense fancy yellow, set in an elegant back drop of platinum. While the pear shape diamonds alone are stunning, I wanted to bring a sense of unity and fluidity to the composition without over-designing, so I added a beautiful curvilinear fringe composed from small diagonally positioned marquise-cut diamonds. I think I achieved the fluidity and unity I was seeking and was pleased with the subtle textural or fringe like quality that emerged.


 

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Screen Shot 2015-06-01 at 9.38.02 AM“I always thought that inspiration is for amateurs. The rest of us show up and get to work.” -Chuck Close. Part of a person’s education will always be play, experimentation, and chance.  I also believe that an element of this exists in our work. As a designer, I consider myself to be a creative problem solver, even though I’m usually the one creating the problems. I personally enjoy playing with contradictions, in this case ordered, geometric shapes and chaotic, asymmetrical design problems. This project was born out of an attempt to balance these factors, manifesting as conversations between matter and space, color and shape.


 

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Screen Shot 2015-06-01 at 9.38.58 AMAs a very competitive person, designing for a contest often draws out my most enthusiastic and focus-inducing creative process. The first and most difficult task is to impress myself; I am my hardest critic and my most difficult adversary. There is no better victory than to first outdo the “me of yesterday.” My sole inspiration and goal for this ring was purely to design a piece of jewelry that, when the pencil dropped, would trigger me to push my chair away from my desk and say, “That’s awesome!”


 

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Screen Shot 2015-06-01 at 10.02.49 AMIt is an artist’s gift to breathe life into the inanimate. One must carefully choose the perfect materials for one’s creations, with all parts carefully planned in the creator’s mind. I’m very drawn to very minimalist designs, preferring clean, well placed lines and simple surfaces that allow all of my chosen materials to come together in a natural and harmonious composition. The platinum was a given for this design, but when I saw the fiery pear- shaped precious topaz for the first time, I knew that it was the perfectly aligned with my vision. The final element needed to complete my design was a beautiful hand-selected pear-cut diamond. I wanted the two gems to appear as if they were being drawn toward each other, so I used strategic spacing and setting techniques to achieve a feeling of tension and movement in the overall piece.

If you’re at JCK you can check these pieces out in person. Click here to see a complete list of entries. And don’t forget to let us know what you think. Who knows – maybe one day a version of these will be available for purchase!