The allure of precious metals has continued throughout the centuries. For thousands of years these metals have been crafted into jewellery using tools and techniques, many of which are still used today.
I use bullion dealers / refiners that supply recycled precious metals, rather than ones that use newly mined materials. I work in a number of different precious metals including sterling silver, 9ct and 18ct yellow, white and red / rose gold. Please find some information below which goes into more detail about precious metals, their properties and qualities.
Sterling silver is a worldwide recognised form of precious metal. The fineness of the precious metal content of jewellery and silverware is expressed in parts per thousand. Sterling Silver items are hallmarked 925 to indicate it contains 92.5% silver. It is inadvisable to create jewellery from pure silver as it would be too soft and is therefore alloyed (mixed) with copper to make it durable. Please see the 'Jewellery Care' page for further information about how to look after your jewellery.
Due to it's relative softness and quicker rate of wear than other precious metals, I would not recommend creating items such as wedding and engagement rings that are worn everyday for a long period of time.
There are many differences between the carats and colours of gold, not just their cost but the general look, finish, colour, weight and tarnish resistance. I primarily work in 18ct gold as overall this alloy offers the best all round properties to create fine jewellery. Its proportion of gold (minimum 75% which is more than double of that of 9ct gold) offers both quality and resilience. Colours that can incorporated in bespoke pieces include yellow, red and white gold. This is achieved by the ratio of other metals that are used to create the alloy. With red gold, there is a higher proportion of copper than in yellow gold. Similarly with 'white' gold there is a higher proportion of other white metals such as palladium (a member of the platinum family) which creates a beautiful subtle grey which doesn't require plating like commercial jewellery.
I hope this has given you an overview of what is available. The details of different carats and colours of gold can be discussed in further detail when discussing a commission. Please visit the 'Bespoke' pages of the website for further details about commissioning a piece especially for you.
In the U.K precious metals are hallmarked. A hallmark is an independent worldwide respected guarantee of the fineness and quality of precious metal. It comprises a series of marks applied to articles of gold, silver and platinum. It indicates the piece has been independently tested at an Assay Office and guarantees that it conforms to the legal standards of precious metal content, known as fineness.
'GE' my Sponsor's mark which is struck on all pieces and is registered at The Goldsmiths' Company, Assay Office, London, which has a record of testing the quality of gold and silver dating back to c1300. A Sponsor's mark takes the form of the makers initials surrounded by a shield design and is unique to the maker.
A Hallmark consists of a series of marks applied to articles of precious metals including, platinum, gold, palladium and silver.
The majority of my work is hallmarked, with the exception of some smaller items such as silver items that weigh under 7.8 grams or pieces under 1 gram in gold, which is the maximum legal limit for un-hallmarked pieces and/or pieces that are exempt because hallmarking would damage the design. However, quite often pieces that are under this weight are hallmarked anyway. If you have any questions to whether a piece is hallmarked, please contact me.
I often incorporate gemstones into my designs using stones which are sourced from reputable merchants who guarantee that their gemstones are conflict free.
There are various options to consider when choosing a stone. The majority of stone set pieces I create incorporate either diamonds, sapphires (available in a wide range of colours, not just blue!) and rubies because of their hardness and ability to withstand everyday wear. This makes them particularly suited for rings designs, especially wedding and engagement rings or others that are intended to be worn everyday for a long time. There are a range of possibilities including type, shape, size, colour and quality of gemstone.
Gemstones can be set in various ways. I tend to use round, oval and pear shaped gemstones as I find that they lend themselves to the organic flowing lines of my designs, but occasionally I use other shapes. Whether they are set into the curls of the tendrils or a rub-over or claw setting, they can be used to enhance a design with their size, quality and colour or be used to represent something. For instance, birthstones can be chosen to represent your birthday or family members birthdays.
If you have your own gemstones these can be considered for inclusion for sentimental or environmental reasons. Please get in contact to discuss things further.
If you don't already know the ring size you require, you are welcome to visit me at a craft event or arrange a time to visit my workshop to have your finger measured. Alternatively, gauging a ring-size is a service that most high street jewellers will provide free of charge.
UK ring sizes are measured from A-Z and in half sizes. I can also take International orders so please let me know what country you are ordering from.
Ring Sizing Systems: Different countries use different ring size systems.
The size of your hands can change over the course of the day and can also be affected by temperature (your fingers will be smaller when it’s cold and larger when warm). It might be best to have your finger measured a few times to ensure you order the best size, usually in the afternoon or evening when your fingers are likely to be at their largest. Remember your hands will be slightly larger in the warmer months and smaller in the colder ones. Therefore ideally you want a ring to fit snuggly in the warmer months but not so tight as to be uncomfortable or too loose in the cooler months. If you require further advice about how to make sure you have the correct ring size, please get in contact to discuss things further.
Chains are available in different lengths including 16" (standard length), 18" & 20", which can be selected during the ordering process. If you are unsure, please add to the 'notes' box that this is to be confirmed and it can be discussed after the order has been placed, and charged accordingly.
Longer chain lengths from 22" to 30" are available on request and are quoted for on an individual basis. Please get in touch via the Contact page to discuss your requirements.
A guide to determining the correct chain length:
Either measure a favourite necklace of a length that you like or if you are unsure about which length you require, use a piece of string with a knot in one end and bring the other end loosely around to where you wish the necklace to sit. (Please remember that the pendant will sit below this line - look at the approximate dimensions of each individual piece).
If the necklace is a gift, if you can measure a chain that the person already wears. If this is not possible, please note that 16" is the standard length. If the length you purchase is incorrect I am happy to exchange it, providing the chain is returned unworn in its original condition.
If you would like more than one length of chain, extras can be purchased. Please Contact me to discuss your requirements.
If you have a bracelet that already fits you, measure the length of bracelet and make a note of it on the order, so I can make it to your exact size.
Alternatively, measure your wrist and then add 2cm as this will give you the length required. A standard length bracelet is 19cm to 20cm (7.5"-8").
If you have a bangle that already fits you, measure the inside diameter and make a note of it on the order, so I can make it to your exact size.
Measuring your hand
To measure the correct fit, hold your hand outstretched as if you were putting on a bangle and measure the widest part of your hand the bracelet will slide over. The average size is around 19cm-20cm (7.5" - 8.0") depending on how big or small your hand is.
Earrings on hook fittings instead of posts?
All earrings, unless otherwise stated have a 'post' fitting. If you prefer hooks many of my designs can be altered to accommodate this fitting. Please contact me stating the piece you have in mind. There is normally no extra charge for this service.
Can earrings be made into clip-ons?
A lot of my designs can accommodate clip-on or screw back fixing earrings. Please contact me with the design you have in mind and I will be able to advise if it is suitable and the additional cost.
In the past I have supplied galleries and retail outlets including the various branches of the John Lewis Partnership, including Southampton, Glasgow, Bluewater and the Oxford Street branch in London. However alongside my 'Collections' my passion lies with working one on one to create bespoke pieces made to the individual requirements of the customer commissioning the piece.
I feel very privileged to have created many pieces over the years to celebrate or commemorate big life events such as engagements, weddings and anniversaries or just as a special piece for yourself.
I take great pride in my work and it means a great deal to me that pieces I create will be treasured for years to come. Please see the various pages in the 'Bespoke Gallery' and 'Wedding & Engagement Rings' section of the website as well as the 'Testimonials' page. Once you have viewed these, please use the 'Bespoke Enquiry Form' and I look forward to discussing things further. I am based in Hampshire UK, near to beautiful New Forest, which provides inspiration for my work. However, your location is no barrier to creating a piece for you, we can discuss your commission via email, phone or video call.
Whether it is a traditional diamond solitaire ring or something more unusual there are a variety of styles, gemstones and precious metals which can be used to create the perfect ring to mark this important life event.
It's also a good idea to consider what designs would work well with a wedding band. I can create designs to fit alongside a traditional plain wedding band or if you want to consider something more elaborate I can make suggestions (examples are copied below).
Examples of two and three ring Bridal Sets:
I can create two rings designed to be worn together, made so they look like one ring, but will also look equally good when worn individually. I have also made designs that incorporate three rings - one engagement ring and two weddings rings. However, the third could be added later as an eternity ring if you so wish.
If you already have an engagement ring and would like a wedding ring created to fit alongside it, this is possible. There have been many occasions where I have done this, even with unusual shaped rings. Please see the examples below and visit the 'Shaped Wedding Rings' page in the Bespoke Gallery.
Please contact me via the Bespoke Enquiry Form to discuss the various options further. If known please let me know the carat of gold and the type and size of gemstone that you have. If you can email me a photo it's a really useful way to initially determine what is feasible and what designs work best.
Wedding Rings created to fit with unusual shaped engagement rings:
I also create matching rings or ones in a similar style if you would like you and your partners ring to be the same or have a similar look. Please visit the 'Matching Sets' page for examples.
Engraving can be a lovely way to personalise jewellery. Rings can be engraved with text, a date, initials or even a motif. Quotes are dependant on what is required. Please note that in some instances this can add to the time-scale but this is looked at on an individual basis, so please contact me to discuss your requirements.
Precious pieces that will last a lifetime and serve as a reminder of a wonderful wedding day.
Wedding and bridal jewellery can be created for the bride, groom, bridal party or as thank you gifts for bridesmaids, ushers, family members and other members of the bridal party to present on the day. Designs can be tailored to your requirements and compliment existing pieces such as the wedding and engagement rings.
The 'Collections' pages display a variety of different pieces including matching necklaces, bangles and earrings that are perfect for you and your bridal party on the special day. These precious pieces will last a life time to be worn again and again and serve as a reminder of your special day.
You can commission me to create a special piece of jewellery, designed and handcrafted especially for you. I am also able to create matching sets for your bridal party. These can be 'Bespoke' designs created to your own requirements or one of my existing designs that can be customised for you.
There are many pieces of jewellery in the Collections pages that are ideal for bridesmaids and make wonderful thank you presents.
If you would like to see what other people have said about my work, please see the 'Testimonials' pages.
Sterling silver is a precious metal that is prone to tarnishing. Several things which will accelerate this process are;
It is a good idea to store your jewellery separately from each other to prevent small surface scratches from occurring when they rub together and this will also prevent them from becoming entangled. If you look after your jewellery it will continue to look beautiful for years to come. I provide an anti tarnish care cloth with every order which is ideal for use on sterling silver. Silver does tarnish with exposure to the air, but regularly using this care cloth will help prevent this and even when the cloth blackens it still works well. Keep it in the plastic holder provided and do not wash it as this will remove its anti-tarnishing properties. It can also be used to clean heavily tarnished pieces and instructions for use are also enclosed.
Additional cloths are also available for £2.80 on the website 'Polishing Cloth' page.
Prevention / Removal
If your jewellery does become badly tarnished it should be noted that tarnishing is not a permanent effect on silver and can be removed. It is also possible to retain/restore a high bright shine with the proper care in a number of ways as mentioned above. If your jewellery has a build up of dirt and grime then a mild detergent and a soft toothbrush is a good way to remove this.
Please note that with regards to tarnish I do not recommend using Silver Dip. It hastens the speed in which silver tarnishes afterwards as well as the possibility of pitting and damaging the metal in the process.
An 'Ultra-Sonic' machine will thoroughly clean pieces, removing tarnish and any grime that has built up (even from areas that a cloth cannot reach). However, it should be noted that pearls and some gemstones are not suitable for this. To restore the ultimate in high shine finishes and also remove small surface scratches, it is preferable to use a combination of re-polishing with mops and various polishing compounds and using a 'ultra-sonic' machine. These are services that I also provide so if you would like to discuss things further, please contact me to discuss your requirements. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch.