To handmake an eternity ring involves many stages and a great deal of skill and care.
The first stage of a eternity ring is the design. One of our team of designs will combine their skill, design flair and experience with their customer's own ideas, style and budget to come up with the perfect design.
Next the metal is sourced from a bullion dealer, arriving in either basic shapes such as sheet and wire. It is often necessary to work, say, the wire into smaller shapes and this is done by pulling it through drawing plates or squeezing sheet through a mill. We sometimes melt down gold to form the eternity ring's basic shape.
All through the process, the metal is regularly annealled - that is heated to a high temperature using a jeweller's flame then treated in pickle which is a dilute sulphuric acid mixture to remove surface oxidisation.
The shank is formed by hammering it around a ring mandrel and joined it together - not as easy as it sounds! It is particularly tricky to fit it all together straight and in line whilst keeping the shank exactly circular and to the required ring size. The joints are made with intense heat and hallmark quality solder of the same metal type as the eternity ring
Next is the time consuming process of filing then fine filing then sanding with emery paper and lastly polishing paper until the eternity ring is completely formed
In the UK it is a legal requirement that all precious metal jewellery over a specific weight is hallmarked with the maker's mark, date, metal type and place of Assay. Our work is hallmarked in London with the letters HK in a slightly rounded rectangular box. Eternity rings are tested by the London Assay Office for the
purity of the metal - if anything is not as it should be the eternity ring is crushed!!
If there are stones to be set into the eternity ring, this happens next. Small amounts of the shank's metal are pushed up over the stone using specialist tools and the skill is to make sure that the stone is balanced and secure. The eternity ring will need more finishing to be made ready for polishing.
Hand engraving happens next with special swan-neck engravers for those tricky letters inside of the shank. It is only possible to have one type of font for this skilled job.
Finally, polishing is done with a polishing wheel and polishing compound eg rouge - rather a messy process but wonderful to see the finished eternity ring coming together.
Our workshop is open to the public and you can see our gold and silversmiths at work.