Jewelry Terms & Details

The Natural Sapphire Company specializes in fine sapphire jewelry. We are a direct mine-to-market production house. We specialize in the creation of fine, one of a kind, handmade jewelry items.

Daily we create unique, custom pieces in our in-house art depart. We can achieveany simple or highly technical designs that our customers desire. Our pieces are handmade. Detail and quality are always our first priority.

Here are some basic details on jewelry terms, procedures and explanations. Please contact us if you have further questions.

Drawings and Renderings
Wax Models
Metal Types
Mounting
Setting
Ring Size
Bracelets and Necklaces

The problem is that color interpretation is always unique from one person to the next, so it is almost impossible to agree on a standard. Also, there are so many tones and hues of one type of color that identifying them all correctly on a standardized basis would be impossible.

On clarity, colored stones are generally far more saturated with inclusions at a level of 10 x magnifications than with diamonds. There are many different types of inclusions in colored stones as well. If the same clarity grading system were in place for colored stones as it is for diamonds, there would almost never be high-clarity graded colored gemstones.

This does not mean that all colored stones are included; rarely can you see inclusions without the support of magnification. Even in "included" colored stones it is difficult to see clarity issues without close inspection or with the aid of a loupe or microscope.

Cutting grading has similar complexity issues as clarity grading. The basic issue with grading cutting on colored gemstones is that there are so many types of cutting styles. It would be almost impossible to give a complete detail of a cutting style on each and every colored stone.

Demand for laboratory grading within sapphires and other colored stones has not reached a level where such a standardized system has been needed as of yet. If demand continues to rise for a standardized grading system it is possible that some perimeters will be established in a uniform code. In most cases an ideal grading should be done by a third party that has excellent experience within the field as well as no interest in the sale of the item being graded. But the bottom line is that there is currently no standardized grading system. If someone tells you otherwise they are trying to sell you a service that is only reliable with that one person or company and not the general market.

Drawings and Renderings

Custom, made to order jewelry takes vision, skill and experience. A design is first discussed verbally, with the aid of existing pictures, or from an already completed piece of jewelry. Rough sketches are then made to complete the model design. Finally, fine drawings and pastels are used to create the finished design through the high skill of our in house artists. From these images a completed jewelry creation is handmade into a finished piece.

Wax Models

A wax model is created in many cases that will be used in the gold/platinum casting process. The wax model is hand carved to the exact specifications of the stones being used. Fine wax models take considerable time and expertise. The wax model quality and design is very important as the finished piece will be an exact replica of the wax design.

Metal Types

14K Gold

14k gold is the standard metal used in jewelry production. The 'k' refers to the term 'karat,' meaning the percentage of gold within the metal. 14k gold is 58.3% pure gold. 14k gold is extremely durable and is perfectly suited to everyday wear.

18K Gold

18k gold has a higher percentage of gold than 14k; 18k is 75% pure gold. Because of its higher gold content, 18k has a beautiful rich yellow color. We cast our settings in both 14k and 18k gold, depending on the jewelry item and per the customer's request.

White Gold

White gold is an alloy of gold and nickel, sliver, or palladium. The inclusion of white metals in the alloy give white gold its silvery color. White gold has a slightly yellowish tint that may be more noticeable depending on the percentage of gold in the metal. White gold is traditionally rhodium plated to give it a crisp, sparkling white appearance. Both 14k and 18k white gold are popular alternatives to platinum, as they are much less expensive and also very durable.

Platinum

Platinum is the hardest metal available. It is often the most expensive; nearly three times the price of gold. Platinum is frequently used in exceptional jewelry pieces as it requires a high level of craftsmanship. We recommend platinum for more expensive items as platinum will last a lifetime.

Palladium

Palladium is one of the platinum group metals. Palladium is used as a substitute for platinum or white gold. Palladium has a lovely silvery-white color so it does not require rhodium plating, and it is harder and less expensive than gold or platinum. Because of palladium's excellent biocompatibility, it is a good choice for people ith allergies to gold alloys.

Rose Gold

Rose gold is sometimes referred to as 'pink gold.' Rose gold is often used in special designs where a pinkish metal color best suits the gemstones used in the jewelry design. The rose color is derived from the addition of different alloys in the gold casting process.

Green Gold

Green Gold is another unique coloring of gold. Sometimes it is referred to as "mellow yellow" as it has a unique gold coloring. Green gold is often seen with a "satin" (sandblasted) finish, this further accentuates the "green gold" coloration.

Mounting

A mounting or "semi - mount" is a pre-made casting awaiting the stones to be selected for the final setting where there are normally preset side stones (usually pave diamonds or side stones).

These are usually made for rings in order for quick completion after the sapphire has been selected to set in the center opening of the ring.

Setting

There are many different methods of setting stones in jewelry. Here are the most common and widely used methods.

Prong

Prong setting is the most traditional and classic type of setting that is seen in jewelry. It is quite simple in method and design, yet a good setter holds a unique role in the finishing touches of jewelry. Setting a stone at just the right height, completely straight, centered and secure is not an easy task. The risk of chipping a stone is always an ever present danger for a setter. A good setter is a rare craftsman.

Double Prong

A double prong setting is usually reserved for very large stones that require extra security and support. A double prong setting is sometimes requested as a special order. It is used even for smaller stones on occasion, as it lends to a unique look.

Claw Prong

A Claw Prong is a fancy and unique way of finishing off prongs in the setting of a stone. This is a refined look and quite unique. A Double Claw Setting is extra special for large set stones.

Bezel

A bezel setting is a stone that is set without prongs, rather metal is surrounding the entire perimeter of the stone. This is a very safe and secure way of protecting a stone in jewelry. It also is a very unique look as the metal completely showcases the stone that is being set.

Pave

Pave' is a specialty setting type where small round stones (usually diamonds) are set very close together. There are many methods in creating this type of setting. This is normally done by hand with a special tool where a bead is raised and created in between pre-drilled holes. These very small beads are then used to hold the stones together in a very close and uniform way. The finished look is very clean and elegant looking.

Micro Pave

Micro Pave' is very similar to Pave' except extremely small stones are used, in some cases less than 1 millimeter. This work is usually done with the aid of a microscope and sometimes with a laser tool for ultra fine finishing detail. This type of setting work is very expensive and highly labor intensive. It is the work of a specialist.

Ring Size

An important specification of any jewelry is the correct measurement for the wearer. If you are unsure of your ring size, you can print out this ring sizer cut-out and take your own measurement. Yes, it is very accurate if you use it correctly.

Of course if you are not comfortable with taking your own size you can go to any local jewelry store and ask them to please measure your finger.

Click here to print out our ring sizing PDF

Bracelets and Necklaces

Standard lengths for necklace are 18 inches. Bracelets are 7 inches. Special lengths can be accommodated for special orders.