handforged custom jewelry

platinum wedding ring set

platinum wedding ring set

this is a classic platinum wedding ring set for me.

I have seen these rings many years after the forging and they always, always! have the most unique patinas… life wearing away at your metal. I love to leave the rings full of hammer marks, polished smooth and shiny, but full of depth – a unique feel you can only get with hand forging.

his ring measures 10mm wide and 1.5 mm deep. you could go to 1mm depth, but the 1.5 gives you enough to ensure a lifetime plus some. platinum is an extremely dense metal, however it is also soft. this makes it malleable and just perfect for forging.

her ring measures 4mm wide and features seven 10pt diamonds. I always encourage brides and grooms to attach some significance to the number of stones we set…simple and significant.

gold rolling ring

a different kind of rolling ring

this is a very different kind of rolling ring design, and one of my all time favorite custom ring creations.

I have always had a penchant for the unusual, and so it seems fitting that so many of my commissions (like this one) start out with…”so many jewellers have turned me away, said they couldn’t make this for me!”

when a prospective client finds me and leads with that story, I almost have to say, “Sure, I’ll give that a go…”

is there a better way to figure something out?

this ring was no exception. she wanted a band that would roll atop another band – ok.

yes, I could forge the yellow gold concave band. no problem. and yes, I could forge a band the would roll atop the gold without coming off.

so far so good

she was set on the metals we would use, however, and here is where I put up a bit of a fight. she was adamant: white gold.

ugh.

white gold is the most unforgiving, unmalleable, brittle (read, hates to be hammered) metal. I was quite sure there was no way I was going to be able to perfectly form the white gold band over the yellow gold and suggested sterling silver instead.

she insisted and I worked it out — and this ring came out really cool!

the white gold band somehow joined itself and gave me a beautiful simple seam which I soldered and thus joined the bands forever. the rolling aspect is really lovely, and gives the ring a whole new dimension.

I’ve since experimented with this concept in sterling and while its definitely easier, its not quite the same creative satisfaction as meeting an ‘impossible’ client request.

I do love my clients, especially the ones who give me good reason to push my boundaries!

platinum wedding rings

platinum wedding rings

I will never ever forget how these platinum wedding rings came to be.

One day I receive an email from a woman asking me if I would make her wedding rings. She and her beloved had been together for many years and finally wanted to officially tie the knot. Problem was she had been turned down by a number of jewelers already.

The reason why? Because they are two women.

My heart broke in a million pieces when I heard this — sometimes, humanity makes me feel ill.

Needless to say, I put all of my heart into making this wedding set for them and they could not have been easier or kinder to work with in creating these hand forged platinum wedding rings.

The single band with a flush set white diamond measures 6mm wide, 2mm deep. The duo also measures 6mm wide (each band 3mm) with two bluish/green tourmalines set into 18k yellow gold bezels.

She wanted something to remind her of her love for the sea, so the blue/green tourmalines fit the bill perfectly.

I wish them a lifetime of happiness and when the marriage equality laws were upheld in the Supreme Court, I sent them a special message of joy. one of the best parts of my job is to create everlasting tokens of love like these and I’m thrilled we as a society are finally on board with that same message across the land.

platinum rolling ring

rolling ring in platinum

when I was sixteen, my parents gave me a cartier rolling ring. I still have that red leather box with the gold embossing and have treasured the ring for over thirty years.

so when one of my all time favorite clients came to me asking for a platinum rolling ring…her new “worry ring”…I was so excited!

this particular client has always been very specific…I love that. she already knew she wanted one band to be hammered, one smooth and brushed with a matte finish and one, forged but polished smooth and shiny.

so this ring being forged in platinum, required some careful pricing before quoting the job. I was going along, pricing out the ring to be a size 8 when my genius of a client emails me saying, don’t forget to account for the intertwining of the bands!

ahhh. well damn, I hadn’t thought this through properly and was about to make a colossal error in pricing!

without boring you with the details of my calculations, it turns out that I must forge the bands two american sizes larger to accommodate for the intertwining. to make a ring that is ultimately a size 8, I must forge the bands to be a size 10.

since then I have forged a few of these rings. the weight of the platinum is perfect, the ring rolls beautifully and hopefully it will become a timeless classic in my collection as well. thank you mr. cartier :)

platinum tourmaline ring

platinum tourmaline ring

this platinum tourmaline ring has always gotten so much attention of all the photos in my portfolio, so here’s the real story of how it came to be.

it is a funny story albeit in the real story, there were a lot of bad words ;)

starting out simply enough, the base is hand forged platinum, approximately 10mm wide. the tourmaline belonged to my client, having just returned from a stone buying spree in India, this was her chosen stone.

the setting was to be a thick 18k yellow bezel, rough texture and “definitely handmade”.
all good until I began to marry the gold and platinum…

platinum has a melting temperature of 3215 fahrenheit, 18ky gold will fuse at 1700. you see my discrepancy?

so what happened is this: I began heating the platinum and got it to where i thought it would be just hot enough to fuse the gold, but alas, the second the gold hit the plat, it melted and came back up onto itself.

hence the hole you see here.

but in our house we have always adhered to the principle, “make a f*** up a feature” in other words, go with it and glorify it. so i melted a few more “light holes” and voila!

it fits perfectly with the design of the ring overall and worked so well I now regularly do this to bring more light to the stones I feature in these heavier rings.

platinum tanzanite ring

tanzanite ring in platinum & gold

this big huge gorgeous tanzanite ring commission really has it’s own story.

my client took a pilgrimage to tanzania, the land of her ancestors, and purchased this stone. the mines have all since collapsed and many casualties later it is damn near impossible to purchase a genuine, untreated tanzanite of this size anymore.

so no pressure setting this baby.

while tanzanite is relatively hard, measuring 6.5-7 on the Mohs scale, it has what gemologists call, “perfect cleavage” in two directions, which makes it dangerous to set by my hammer method.

this is a pretty large hand forged platinum ring, measuring 12mm wide. the tanzanite is set into a hand forged 18k yellow gold bezel. I melted holes in the bezel to allow light to pass under and through the tanzanite thus allowing light to pass through this bluish purple stone, because after all, this tanzanite ring should be all about this stone…

she wanted the finish to be rough. I so love this, but don’t often send out jewellery with this rough texture. you have to want this, though it does, I have to say, wear the most beautifully over time.

when i polish it all to a fine shine first, the scratches from life are what appear first.

when you start out a bit rough, though, the first thing you notice is how life polishes your jewelry, which is all this stone needed from me.

hand forged platinum engagement ring

hand forged platinum engagement ring

hand forged platinum engagement ring, polished up so brilliantly…

oh I love these rings!

engagement ring and wedding band design collaboration between italian architect bride and me. the groom was well acquainted with my style and had suggested me.

3 oval white diamonds, .33 ct each and two rounds, .08ct each.

john and I delivered this wedding set to the bride and groom in spain for the event itself. while traveling I spied a gucci ring in a strikingly similar fashion, thus I have always suspected this was the inspiration for my italian bride.

I wore the rings over (always wear your jewelry while traveling!) and fell so in love with the set. on it’s own, the wedding band is so simple, yet it has enough presence, enough weight, to hold it’s own. that said, I welded these bezels onto the band so those little babies ain’t going nowhere.

now 17 years old, I would love to see how these platinum rings have weathered time…. this kind of forged platinum always takes on a life of it’s own after years of wear.