Have you ever wondered about the terminologies used in jewelry making?
When I first started designing my own jewelry, it felt like I was learning a completely different language. I kept hearing terms I had never heard before which made them more confusing.
But my curiosity drove me to learn more about jewelry design terminologies. The more I understood them, the more I felt connected to the techniques I was studying, and the more I want to share them with you. There are tons of benefits to familiarizing yourself with the common terms in jewelry! You gain a deeper understanding and develop a sense of appreciation for the art’s history.
Here are a few common terminologies used in jewelry making that might come in handy:
Annealing is a heat treatment process that softens the precious metal and makes it more pliable. This helps with shaping metal into your ideal design.
Basse-taille means a shallow cut in French. It’s an engraving technique where you fuse transparent enamels after carving, engraving, or stamping.
Casting is the 6000-year old process of pouring melted metal into a mold. Once the metal hardens and forms, you can then file and polish the piece or set it with precious stones.
Embossing is when you hammer malleable metal to shape it from the reverse side to raise the design in low relief.
The engraving process is when you carve a design on jewelry pieces. Often used with a sharp steel tool (a graver) or a Dremel engraving tool.
Soldering is a technique used to join metal pieces together with melted alloy metal that has a lower melting point. It’s also used to repair jewelry.
Whether you’re starting from scratch or designing jewelry professionally, getting familiar with jewelry design terminologies can help you understand your creative process and explore techniques that can bring life to your designs!
And remember: it’s OK to ask questions!
What’s the first jewelry design terminology you heard? Share below!
Building your own jeweler’s kit? Shop your tools and supplies here: Metals & Gems Tools