A Guide to Choosing the Perfect Precious Metal & Stone
December 1, 2021 • 7 min read • #ring design
Shopping for jewellery can be a time-consuming activity, especially if you can't find what you are looking for. Fortunately, you don't need to spend forever searching for that perfect piece. Designing your own is far simpler!
Designing a ring starts with a bit of daydreaming, but it ends with a timeless piece that you'll treasure forever. Still, first-time designers might wonder which precious metal they use as the base for their creation.
In this brief guide, we'll explore everything you need to know about custom ring design, including the most precious metal options for your piece. Keep reading to learn more.
How to Design a Ring
Designing a ring might seem daunting, especially if you've never designed jewellery before. However, the key to this process is a little creativity, information, and professional assistance.
In fact, the entire design process is relatively straightforward. Overall, you'll need to:
- Tap into your imagination
- Choose precious metals
- Select precious stones and gems
- Contact a design specialist
Let's explore these steps in greater detail to help you start designing today.
1. Tap Into Your Imagination
Before you can design a custom ring, you'll need to imagine what it looks like! This first step is one of the most exciting parts of the design process, and you can truly let your creativity go wild.
However, inspiration can be a fickle thing, and it's easy to feel flustered by the number of design choices available to you.
An excellent way to combat this issue is to grab a blank sheet of paper, some coloured pencils and begin sketching. Even if you're not a talented artist, doodling some designs can kick your creativity into gear.
Another thing you can do is tap into Pinterest or Instagram and start getting an understanding of what you like and don't like.
Besides, once you have a general idea of what kind of ring you'd like to create, you can move on to an even more exhilarating step: Choosing a precious metal for the ring band.
2. Choose Precious Metals
As you might imagine, there are several types of precious metals, and they each have a unique price point, history, and set of properties.
Gold, for example, is one of the most popular types of precious metals. It's luminous, malleable enough for jewellery making, and it never corrodes. However, it's not your only option when designing a ring.
Some of the most valuable precious metals for jewellery making also include:
Silver is a common alternative to gold, thanks to its lower price point and similar properties. That said, silver is a little denser and less malleable than gold.
While this can become problematic during the smelting and shaping process, it's also beneficial when creating jewellery. After all, the last thing you want is your band to start warping!
Gold might be pricier than silver, but platinum's price tag outranks them both! In addition, this metal is durable, so it's unlikely ever to warp or bend. It's also resistant to extreme temperatures and impacts.
Notably, platinum looks almost identical to silver. As such, it's a great, long-lasting alternative to cheaper, flimsy silver pieces. However, even this top-of-the-line precious metal pales in comparison to rhodium.
Rhodium is often listed as the most expensive type of precious metal used to create jewellery. More precisely, rhodium is used to coat other precious metals, increasing their strength and reducing corrosion.
So, if you'd like to create a silver ring that never tarnishes, you'll want to invest in a bit of rhodium. Rhodium ensures that you'll be able to enjoy a tougher piece of jewellery that can last a lifetime!
3. Select Precious Stones and Gems
After choosing a precious metal, you'll need to select stones and gems to place into or atop that band. Fortunately, there are dozens of precious stones and gems from which to choose.
Still, let's take a quick peek at some of the most celebrated and stunning options, including:
Diamonds have been a popular choice for engagement rings since the 15th century! Their translucent appearance, stunning reflective qualities, and a wide variety of colourations make them challenging to resist.
That said, diamond mining often isn't the most ethical or safe industry, leading many to opt for other gems.
But not all diamonds are acquired using cheap, back-breaking labour. Lab-grown diamonds are an ethical alternative, and they're just as gorgeous (if not more so) than those mined from the earth.
So, if your dream ring includes a diamond, be sure to consider this sustainable alternative.
Moissanites appear to be very similar to diamonds but they are not diamonds. They are also not lab diamonds.
Moissanites have a different chemical composition and are made out of silicon carbide. Whereas diamonds are made out of only carbon – this gives moissanites different properties.
Most jewelers cut moissanite in the same way that they cut diamonds and in doing so, it gives a hazy look. If they are cut properly, they appear more brilliant than diamonds and can give off a 'rainbow-like' reflection. Moissanites are also not as hard as diamonds (but they are still incredibly hard).
Compared to diamonds, they are a lot more affordable. If you're interested in moissanites, be sure to work with a jeweler who knows how to specifically cut them (below is a recent piece we created).
While diamonds tend to have a white or clear appearance, many other precious gems are known for their rich colours. Emeralds, for example, exude a deep, luminous green that's equally enchanting and enigmatic.
These stones aren't nearly as pricey as organic diamonds, which also boosts their overall desirability. Once associated with romantic love and truth, you might want to consider adding a few of these to your ring.
Rubies are well-known for their deep crimson colour, and they're often confused with garnets.
However, rubies enjoy a long history of royal associations and high valuations. So, if you're feeling particularly regal, you'll want to design a ring encrusted with these red beauties.
Sapphires are often associated with their cool blue colors – but sapphires can naturally appear in many other colors such as purple and yellow.
Precious opals can reflect a dazzling rainbow of colours, making them a popular accent stone for high-quality rings. For centuries, these silica-rich stones have been associated with luck, purity, and wisdom.
4. Contact a Design Specialist
After you've chosen a precious metal (or several) and some accent gems and stones (or several), it's time to contact a design specialist.
A jewellery design specialist can consult with you, sketch out your ideas more clearly, and plan a design based on your preferences. They are a crucial part of the design process.
Still, finding a friendly, helpful, and experienced design specialist can be challenging. Fortunately, Four Words has you covered.
You can find immediate creative and practical design assistance by contacting one of the many brilliant Four Words design specialists. They can walk you through the creation process, answer questions, and offer advice.
Making your perfect ring a reality could be far easier than you think, especially when you have professional creative teams backing you up. So, what marvellous masterpieces will you design today?
Start Designing a Ring Today
Designing a ring starts with a little imagination and ends with a gorgeous, one-of-a-kind piece that's bound to captivate. If you're unfamiliar with the basics of ring design, you can use this guide for inspiration and information.
If you're ready to make a unique and stunning ring, be sure to contact a professional jewellery designer today. Your consultation is only a quick message or a call away, so don't hesitate to get started!