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How Jewelry is Made

Today’s world is filled with millions of products at our disposal. Just peruse Amazon, and you can find just about anything!  It is very easy to lose touch with how those products are made and the talent and ingenuity that comes with creation. I often get asked how jewelry is created, and I wanted to go over the main ways a lump of gold becomes jewelry you cherish for a lifetime. 

Hand Fabrication: Hand fabrication is the very first way jewelry came into being, and while some of the tools and methods have evolved over time, the concept is the same.  When a jewelry is hand fabricated, it means that a very talented jeweler has made all the parts and pieces of the jewelry. He or she has hand rolled the gold to shape it into a shank (the part you slip on your finger in a ring), they have made the head (the part that holds the diamonds and gemstones) by soldering pieces together at just the right size, they have cut out sheets of gold to create the pendant and earring shape.  And then, they have put them all together to form a solid piece of jewelry.  I haven’t properly described all the work that goes into hand fabrication, but it is the most labor-intensive way of creating jewelry, and your talent must be very high in order for the jewelry to come out right. For the most talented hand fabricators, you’d never know it was all done by hand! 

Lost Wax Casting By Hand: Lost wax casting begins with a hand drawn sketch of a piece of jewelry. A very talented jeweler will hand carve the design into wax, which is usually green or blue, creating a 3d rendering of the piece.  Any changes made, usually requires a whole new wax to be hand carved. Once the wax is set, the casting begins.  The wax is set into a metal cylinder that is filled with investment and the wax. The investment is a white material that has the consistency of the a very thick chocolate shake!  Once the investment is dry and solid, the cylinder is put into a centrifuge that spins in a circle, and the wax is burned out leaving a mold of the wax behind. The gold is then melted to the perfect temperature and pushed into the mold creating the basic jewelry piece.  When the piece is cooled down enough, a jeweler will begin the process of refining, polishing, and setting the gemstones in place. 

Lost Wax Casting By CAD: CAD is the acronym for computer aid drawing, which means the drawing or sketch of the jewelry is done using a computer program.  The technician can input specific measurements of gemstones and the overall jewelry size.  A rendering on paper or video is created for the client to see and decide if there are any changes needed which can be done easily in the program.  Once it is done, the computer transfers the files to a 3d printer which prints out the wax rendering.  The process for casting, refining, polishing, and setting remains the same as above.   


No matter what process is used to create your piece, all jewelry has to be refined, polished, and set with gemstones by hand.  These aren’t processes machines can do.  There are a million different variables that come into play that not only make your jewelry beautiful but also structurally sound. When you put your favorite piece of jewelry on today, remember that there was hours of work and talent that went into creating your beloved piece!

I would love to help you with your jewelry! Angela Cisneros Jewelry Concierge brings back the joy and confidence of jewelry shopping, so that you can celebrate with ease! My by-appointment approach means:

  • One-on-one appointments (personal attention and no crowds!)

  • Discretion and privacy (surprises remain surprises!)

  • Expert help from a Graduate Gemologist with 26 years of experience (yep, that’s me!)

Learn more about me and my process: 

Book your FREE appointment with me today! 

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