swan ring

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Epic Preening Swans ring! 18K gold with a bit over 5 carats of steely gray rose-cut diamonds. Hard to tell in my still photos, but rose-cut diamonds like these are total glitter-bombs.

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

I took about a billion photos of this one, including a bunch of it as I carved. Click the extended link for the full montage:

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

I didn’t notice until after I took all these pics that I had a dot of polishing compound still stuck to the ring. Dangit!

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Back in time!! The original design sketch. We went with the lower right version.

Here’s what I start with: a chunk of hard green wax.

Saw off a piece and start hacking at it with an exacto knife and a rough file. Looks pretty gnarly.

Now I have to start making it ring-like. I bore out the inside hole to the appropriate finger size and bring the profile down to a manageable thickness. Do a little rough shaping. Get some diamonds on there..

Smoothed out for sanity’s sake, bezels roughed out.

Crudely scratch in the basic design.

Giving it some shape..

Oh hey: Starting to look like I meant it!

Fits!

Refining the shape more; giving the feathers a bit of movement.

Final details: the finished wax before casting.

..And fresh out of casting with the sprues nipped off.

Stone setting: I use a white hardening putty to hold my rings in my vice while setting stones. Keeps the gold from getting marred by the vice jaws. This is right after I had set the diamonds so the bezels are still all hammer-dinged up and need to be re-sanded and touched-up.

Custom-carved Swan ring, 18K + gray rose-cut diamonds

Fin.

6 Responses to “swan ring”

  1. Rodger says:

    I find it very disturbing that your fingernails stay clean. How do you do it? Is it magic?

  2. Peg Bowden says:

    I loved watching the whole creative process, from green blob of wax to the golden ring. Was this a custom order? From a swan-o-phile?

  3. admin says:

    RE: Rodger: I have magic fingernails. Didn’t you know?

  4. admin says:

    RE: Peg: Yes, it was a custom design & carved one-of-a-kind piece for a woman on the East Coast. It was inspired by the peacock ring I made a couple of years ago: http://blog.cheyenneweil.com/2014/06/art-deco-peacock-ring/

  5. Stephanie says:

    Do you ever add wax on to your original block? It looks like you had to add bumps for the wing tips under the bottom stone and maybe at the top for the swans necks. How do you add the wax on so seamlessly?

  6. admin says:

    Hiya — Yes, I do build up wax using one of those wax melty pens (the cheapie AA battery kind). I tend to blob more wax than necessary onto my piece, then carve it back down as if from a fresh block rather than try to sculpt with the melted wax.

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