How is Your New Jewelry Item Made?
Have you ever wondered just how your new jewelry was made? How did the jeweler start out with raw bulk product and end up with the finished product? The most common method to cast jewelry is by the ‘lost wax’ casting method. This method was developed in ancient times, and it is still used to this day, although modern tools are now used.
The reason that it is called lost wax is because the object that is to be created is first sculpted out of wax to the exact specifications that the finished product is going to look like. After the wax sculpture is completed, it is then encased in plaster. Then after the plaster encasement has hardened and dried it is put into an oven or kiln. This will cause the wax to melt and burn out leaving its hollow image inside of the plaster encasement.
Then the plaster encasement with the hollow shape of the piece of jewelry is placed into a casting centrifuge which is a device that will use centrifugal force to drive molten gold down through an opening in the chunk of plaster where it will fill the hollow spot left by the wax melting out. After it has cooled the plaster is broken open to reveal a piece of gold jewelry where the wax sculpture once was.
These are NOT the entire steps but just some steps of what each piece goes through before it’s ready to be sold.
Below are snippets of this process which is also the same for sterling silver pieces. We are providing a video on the firing process and other pictures while a 14k gold C7 Corvette heart pendant piece is progressing through the steps. Thanks to Helfer Jewelers for the video and most of the photos below. Helfer does an excellent job working with us in delivering a high-quality product.
** Some pieces require two colors and others have three colors. This particular piece has three colors: black, red and yellow. Each color is painstakingly distributed through extremely fine needles to the appropriate recessed areas.