Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Making Jewelry Storybook--Honking Big Amethyst Pendant

I thought people might be interested in the steps taken for making studio jewelry. I'm not trying to do a tutorial, but rather to show how a piece begins its life through a storybook style of how it comes to be. So here's the first story:

No fancy photos here, just shot off my bench as I'm working. This one began with a stone that I picked up from a gem show. You can see some of the other amethysts at this particular show, including the one featured below at this link: http://jazznjewelry.blogspot.com/2011/05/stone-shopping-at-gem-shows.html

The honking big amethyst

So here's the stone. It's a big honking amethyst that's over 20 carats, beautiful saturated royal purple color with flashes of violet. Its cut is nice, but because of its size, it has to be set carefully so the point doesn't make contact with someone's skin. You can see a substantial bezel that I've made sitting right behind the amethyst.

Here you see the bezel with a shoulder bearing soldered in. The bearing will support the amethyst.

Adding the details

Now you see the setting made with some scroll work and it has been cut out of the background sheet and pre-polished.

And here's the finished pendant with a generous hidden bail.

It has since gone to a gallery in Laramie, WY. The owner's wife was more than helpful in helping him choose what to put in, and this was the first piece she glommed onto.

If you've enjoyed the step-by-step story of how a piece of jewelry is made, look for similar stories in the "Making Jewelry Storybook" sections.

Copyright 2011 by Katherine Palochak

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