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Handcarved Enagement Rings

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Handcarved Enagement Rings

One of the most common questions I get when I’m meeting with a newly-engaged couple (or soon to be bride or groom) is how their ring is made? While I do use other techniques, creating a lost wax carving is by far my favorite, especially for hand-carved engagement rings. Not only is it satisfying to watch a design take shape, it means that each ring I carve is totally unique and special.

Creative Process

A little secret about me: I’m horrible at drawing! I’ve never liked it — I’ve always felt much more natural in working with three dimensional objects. Often, customers will ask me for a drawing, but I find creating a wax model to be much more intuitive. It also gives me (and the customer) a much better sense of the weight and mass of a piece, not to mention it allows me to better visualize how the metal will fit around the stones.

A Little History

Creating hand-carved engagement rings and other jewelry from a wax carving is a process that “officially’ began around five or six thousand years ago. The oldest known examples are from southern Israel however it was used throughout Europe and Asia.
While today’s equipment is highly evolved, the basic technique is essentially the same. I use the simplest of tools to create the carving; it allows me to literally hand-craft my one-of-a-kind pieces. I use start with a simple wax ‘blank’ and then I shape to the approximate width and size we need.
My tool of choice for carving is the flex shaft (a beefed up Dremel Tool) — I use a variety of burrs to shape and texture the wax — I’ve also been known to use everything from x-acto knives to rough stones (where do you think the Rock Ring came from!) to give the wax texture and character.
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