I found this bit of amber for sale loose in a shop in Gdansk, Poland, and decided to make a ring for it from a block of sterling silver that I worked down into sheet and wire by hand. This ring took a bit more work and re-work than I anticipated and the result includes a defect at the side of the ring opposite the amber, though this is noticeable mostly from the inside of the ring and much less from the outside.
I went through several iterations on the design of the setting. I first considered a standard bezel cup (a flat silver plate with a ridge around it), but wanted a more-open design that would allow more light in. I also considered flat plate with tabs around it that would fold up around the amber (essentially, a bezel cup with only multiple short sections of the ridge, instead of the entire ridge).
Eventually, I settled on the design above. The setting is made from two square wires joined to the ring at their mid-points. The amber is placed atop the wires and the four ends of the wires bent up and over the amber to hold it securely. The ends of the wires are filed and shaped a bit so that they are rounded, instead of being sharp. Overall, I am happy with how the setting turned out and would use this style again if I ever have a similar stone to work with.
I put a small piece of 24K gold leaf on the ring itself, under the setting that holds the amber, to make the underside of the setting yellow in color. (This is similar to how I added gilding to the center of the head of the fasola pin). This piece is very small though and I do not think it really does anything to affect the piece. So, next time I would leave that out.
Depicts ‘fa’, ‘so’ and ‘la’, three of the symbols from Aikin’s seven-shape ‘do-re-mi’ system of musical notation.
The construction of the shaft and attachment to the backing is similar to the construction of the salt spoon made earlier.
See the first attempt at the ‘stock’ cufflink head. The effort to melt gold filings into the enamel was not successful. Also, one corner saw a meltdown of the silver border. The same situation happened to a lesser extent in the tip of the arrowhead in the ‘flow’ cufflink. The effort to repair the tip with extra silver was partially successful, but shows a noticeable defect.
See my notebook page showing the iterations of the design of this pendant. I apologize for my chicken-scratchings. I considered making the ‘S’ by drawing silver sheet through an S-shaped hole. Also, 3D printing. And, making all of the letters from round and half-round wire.