The arrival of the Heritage Collection has been one that I have never been more proud of sharing. Launched a couple of years ago, the collection continues to grow year after year. From seeing all types of earrings like the black stud earrings to now most recently the marble stud earrings, these jewelry pieces were designed for longevity.
What's so special about the heritage collection line of jewelry?
The main focus of the heritage collection is that all the pieces that earn a place in this category are built to last: they are hard set, mechanically in metal. This is a traditional, age old practice of setting stones into metal. The purity of a special stone, be it porcelain or an aquamarine, and being paired with a single metal is the beauty of this collection.
There are two types of stone settings being used in this collection: a bezel setting, and a prong style of setting.
What is a bezel setting and why would it be preferred over a prong setting?
A bezel setting is a sheet of solid metal wrapped around a stone, and is the sole piece holding the stone in place. It takes skill and customization to set a stone perfectly so it doesn't wobble or need to be glued in place. The metal will look like it was melted over the stone, but it has been hammered, pushed, and bezel set to hug the stone. There will be no gaps for dust to collect.
A prong setting is when a stone looks as if metal claws are holding it in a tight grip. The prongs in this case should be strong enough to not move or be pried up, because they need to be thick enough to hold the stone down and protect it from getting caught and loosened. Perhaps the only inescapable part of a setting like this is not how beautiful the light can be in passing through a stone set in this style (though truly beautiful), it is that prong settings will catch on fuzzy sweaters or even long hair. It's a slight trade for allowing a 'lightness' to a piece. I have a Tiffany princess set diamond with a knife edge ring my husband gave me many years ago, and this would be my only complaint about the ring... I also found it too big and shiny. But, I'm an odd sort of bird.
Why did you design the Heritage Collection?
I love the entire concept of a heritage piece that can be passed down from one generation to the next. They are special and quite often, unique pieces that are worth keeping or sharing. I also find they are more difficult for a less trained person to copy and continues to set my work apart from the hobby maker that reaches out to ask what "glue" I use. I don't use glue and there is a lot of research and chemistry behind my design choices that isn't usually the easy answer someone looking to copy wants to learn about. The types of earrings I have long sought to have are nickel free, small stud earrings. As a person with severe allergies to nickel (since age six or seven) and sometimes copper (depends on my body chemistry that week), wearing something with tested metal alloys is extremely important to me, and now it's important to my customers with sensitive metal issues like mine. The Heritage Collection distills designs down to simple and elegant choices. They are both classic and minimal and you could get, say, a pair of black studs, and know that you are simply receiving porcelain and gold.