Choosing a Diamond Shape_Martins of Glasgow

Choosing a Diamond Shape for Jewellery: A Beginners Guide

Whether you’re designing an engagement ring or simply want a beautiful piece of jewellery for yourself, choosing a diamond shape is going to be a part of the process.

The shape is a key part of the design and while some shapes are more modern than others, the shape you choose is mostly dependent on your personal style and preferences.

If you are planning to design a ring for someone else, you might want to get an idea of their shape preferences first. Choosing the shape that you (or your loved one) wants, instead of what’s popular right now, is the first and important step. Colour, size, clarity and price are aspects that will factor in thereafter.

The shape of a diamond is also known as a cut – not to be confused with a rating for diamond cut, which you will find on a grading certificate. A cut in these terms refers to the symmetry and polish.

Understanding Your Diamond Shape Options

Here are the different shapes that you can choose from when designing a ring or piece of jewellery.

Round

This is definitely the most popular diamond shape. Round, brilliant diamonds are well known for their sparkle because of the many individual facets. They’re also popular because they’re so symmetrical and above all else, timeless.

Oval

A popular variation of the round cut, an oval diamond has the same number of facets as a round cut, it’s only the shape that’s different. Many people choose this shape because the elongation tends to maximise the appearance of carat weight. If you or your loved one has smaller hands, an oval shape will lengthen the appearance of your fingers.

Pear

This teardrop-shaped diamond is more modern than its round and oval counterparts. Symmetry and proportions are something to pay attention to when choosing a diamond of this shape. This diamond also has the same number of facets (58) as the round and oval shapes and is ideal for smaller hands.

Marquise

The marquise is similar to the oval shape except, it comes to a dramatic point at each end. This is another shape that tends to maximise the appearance of the diamond’s carat weight. This diamond has the largest surface area – something to keep in mind during the design process.

Princess

This contemporary diamond shape is one of the top five most popular options on the market today. As one of the square-shaped diamonds, the princess cut is most brilliant and can have up to 76 facets, which are arranged to achieve maximum sparkle.

Emerald

An emerald cut is rectangular, but the corners are trimmed. The diamonds long, flat facets look similar to stairs if you look at the stone from above. This unique shape makes it easy to see within the stone, so you want to pay careful attention to clarity and colour when shopping around.

Cushion

When purchasing a cushion cut, you can expect broad facets and rounded corners. This is probably one of the more vintage looking diamonds and because the facets are larger, the diamond produces broad flashes of light instead of the traditional sparkle.

Trillion

If you want something unique, this diamond has a signature triangle shape. When placed in the centre of a ring, the sides of the diamond will be convex with extra facets. If they’re used as side stones, the outer edges are flattened. If you want strong geometrical features, this is the ideal choice.

Radiant

A radiant shape is a combination of a round and emerald cut. Available in a square or rectangular shape, this cut has very distinct corners. This specific shape tends to be cut with a deeper profile to achieve the best possible sparkle.

Heart

While the heart is a sweet and playful shape, it’s normally associated with novelty jewellery. However, many people adore this unique cut. You want to pay attention to brilliance and evenness due to the complexity of the facets.

Asscher

Similar to an emerald cut, an asscher shape is known for its excellent dispersion of light and memorable sparkle. This specific shape can have up to 74 facets but 58 is more common. This is another great pick for those who value a more geometric appearance.

Baguette

Lastly, there’s a baguette shape, which is long and rectangular. With only 14 facets, you want to pay attention to clarity and colour if you want this diamond to look good. This specific diamond shape is most often used as an accent stone.

Knowing there are so many diamond shapes might be overwhelming. However, if you have a good idea of what you or your loved one wants and the assistance of a reputable jeweller, this can be a really enjoyable part of the designed process.

Designing Custom Jewellery_Martins of Glasgow

Things You Need to Know About the Custom Jewellery Design Process

Most jewellery that has a back story is a custom design. If you’re considering gifting someone with a custom piece that’s unique and can carry its own story from generation to generation, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Engagement rings are one of the most common custom designs and incorporate a mix of different elements, including metal, diamonds, band style and gemstones. Using these elements, it’s possible to create a ring that’s as unique as your relationship.

Why Go the Custom Jewellery Design Route?

Before you go ahead with a custom design, it helps to understand the benefits and trade-offs of going this route.

Let’s start with some of the benefits:

  • Your custom piece will reflect your personal style, interests and values
  • There won’t be any other ring or piece of jewellery quite like yours out there
  • A custom design is a conversation starter for years
  • There’s always the option to create matching rings, necklaces or bracelets

Next, let’s look at the potential trade-offs:

  • A custom design can be slightly pricier, depending on what you want to do
  • If you’re after quite an intricate design, it can take a lot longer to produce a custom piece
  • The process requires a good deal of collaboration but if you’re working with the right designer, this won’t be an issue
  • In many instances, you won’t be able to see or touch the piece until it’s completely finished

Understanding the Custom Jewellery Design Process

The specifics of the process will differ slightly for everyone but here is a general idea of what you can expect:

  • Sketching Your Idea

If you want to go the custom route, it means you should have a design in mind. If you simply want something unique, you can always shop around for something that appeals to you. If you think you can put a basic sketch together, do so before seeing a designer. If you’re not sure that you can accurately sketch a design, you could always describe it to your designer. If you are going this route, make sure that you can accurately describe what you’re looking for.

  • Search for the Right Designer

Next, you want to take your time to find a designer who specialises in the metal, stones and style you’re interested in. If you can, ask for referrals from those who have gone through this process before and are happy with the results. While it’s important for you to get along with a designer, it’s essential that you ask to see their previous work too.

  • Start Collaborating

Now that you have a design and a trusted jewellery designer, you can start discussing a timeline. Before the physical design process starts, make sure that you’ve seen an illustration of what it will look like. If you have any questions during this process, don’t be afraid to ask them. Your designer has several years of knowledge and should be able to give you all the information you need to feel comfortable throughout the process.

  • Ask about Warranties and Guarantees

If you’re going to be working on a custom design, ask your designer to put the details of the design in writing. This should include the elements you agreed on as well as a final appraisal that outlines the design and designer. Lastly, don’t forget to insure your custom piece of jewellery.

The custom jewellery design process doesn’t need to be complicated. Speak to us if you have any additional questions about what to expect.

Tips for Cleaning Jewellery_Martins of Glasgow

How to Care for & Clean Your Favourite Jewellery at Home

Whether it’s a unique piece or just a piece that you love to wear often, jewellery looks its best after a good clean. Specific types of jewellery is also more prone to getting dirty, rings being the prime suspect. Lotions, dirt, soap and dust can all clog jewellery settings and create a dull appearance.

Since we will all be spending some additional time at home, we might as well use this time to care for and clean our jewellery – here are some top tips.

Cleaning Silver Jewellery

The best way to clean silver jewellery is with a high-quality silver polish. This specific type of polish contains ingredients that dissolve dirt and grime and create a protective barrier. You will also need a cloth that you can use to clean and shine the jewellery. If you don’t have this lying around the house, there are some other ways to get your silver to shine once again. One option is to mix a few drops of dish soap with warm water, clean the jewellery and rinse it off with cold water. The second is to mix three parts baking soda with one part water and use a cloth to clean the jewellery. Don’t forget to rinse well. Lastly, you can also use white toothpaste to gently clean jewellery with your finger. Rinse well with warm water afterwards.

Cleaning Gold Jewellery

Gold jewellery also responds really well to a few drops of dish soap in warm water. Let your jewellery soak in this solution for about 5 minutes before you lay them on a soft cloth. You can now use a soft toothbrush to clear away dirt in some of the smaller crevices. Rinse the jewellery under running water before you polish it with a cloth.

Cleaning Stones and Pearls

Precious and semi-precious stones can be cleaned in the same way as mentioned above but instead of using regular warm water, add the dish soap to some seltzer water. The carbonation works really well for loosening trapped debris. You can also use a soft toothbrush to get into the smaller gaps. Rinse the jewellery under running water before buffing it with a soft cloth. If you want to clean pearls, never soak them in any kind of solution as this can damage the string. Rather lay them on a soft cloth and use some shampoo mixed with warm water to clean each pearl with a small makeup brush. Rinse the pearls with a damp cloth and let them dry on their own.

Making Jewellery Last Longer with the Right Care

Here are a few tips that will help you to enjoy your jewellery for longer:

  • Take your rings off before you apply creams and makeup and before you do things around the house such as wash dishes.
  • Believe it or not, your silver jewellery retains its shine the more you wear it. It’s also best to store it in an anti-tarnish bag.
  • Keep your jewellery away from water that contains salt or chlorine.
  • Have your jewellery repaired by a reputable professional if you want it to last longer.
  • Stop oils and perfume from destroying your pearls by cleaning them with a soft cloth on a regular basis.

There you have it. Cleaning your jewellery at home is simple because there’s a good chance you already have everything you need. Now’s as good a time as any to care for your most treasured pieces.

How to Get Your Money’s Worth When Buying Second-Hand Jewellery

Affordability is one of the main reasons why people choose to purchase second-hand jewellery but finding quality pieces at the right price can sometimes be tricky, especially if you’ve never purchased second-hand jewellery before.

Tips for Buying Second Hand Jewellery

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Huge Engagement Rings – Are You Worried Your Betrothed Is Expecting One?

Many men assume huge engagement rings are at the top of the wish list of their beloved, but not every woman is like the beautiful Jennifer Lopez.  Ms Lopez has been proudly sporting her new huge engagement ring – an emerald-cut diamond from her wealthy fiancé, estimated to be worth anywhere from $1 million to $5 million plus.

If you’re thinking about popping that all important question soon, and don’t have the same budget as the rich and famous, are you worried that your lady will be disappointed with a smaller ring?

huge engagement rings

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Bridal Jewellery For Rent – Great Idea Or Simply Tasteless?

Have you heard about bridal jewellery for rent? It may sound tasteless but it’s every bride’s dream to be draped in fabulous jewels on their wedding day – and these accessories can come with a hefty price tag.

Many brides simply can’t afford to spend a fortune on jewellery for their special day – they and their groom are already spending thousands of pounds on the main event. But with bridal jewellery to rent, being decked out with beautiful jewels is suddenly in the realm of possibility.

Bridal Jewellery For Rent

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How Much To Spend On An Engagement Ring

How Much To Spend On An Engagement Ring?

In days of old, how much to spend on an engagement ring was easily answered: the equivalent to the man’s monthly salary.  Back in 1950 the average full-time weekly salary was around £7*, so spending £28 on an engagement ring sounds very attractive.  But if we take into account inflation, that monthly salary was nearer £2000 in today’s money, which is close to the average UK salary nowadays.  So would you spend £2,000 on an engagement ring for your beloved?

How Much To Spend On An Engagement Ring

 

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Spotlight On: Engraving

Engraving services are popular within the jewellery market, and have been for generations. Engraving is an ancient art form. It was practiced thousands of years ago when our ancestors carved images into cave walls and hundreds of thousands of years ago when shells were finely chiselled in Indonesia.

Today, metal objects are some of the more popular for engraving, and the most popular are pieces of jewellery.

Why Engrave Jewellery?

For some, jewellery can be the perfect gift, whether it be from a loved one or a friend, it is always a thoughtful, elegant, and long-lasting gift that one can cherish and enjoy for a lifetime. Engraving a piece of jewellery creates a significantly more personal touch. Read more

Most Commonly Needed Jewellery Repairs

Having previously talked about the most common watch repairs we see on a daily basis, we are now turning our attention to the most commonly needed jewellery repairs. We see a lot of these issues, so our years of knowledge and expertise really come out to play when it comes to fixing your beloved pieces of .

We can repair these and more, so take a look at what we can do for you if you choose Martins of Glasgow: Read more

Alternatives to Engagement Rings

An engagement is a day you will never forget. Romantic, memorable and breath-taking in all the right ways. As such, you want to be sure that you get one of the most important aspects of the day correct: the ring.

 

However, what do you buy for a woman that, for some reason or another, does not like wearing rings? It can be a delicate issue to confront, as the ring is such a hallowed aspect of the tradition of engagement. Yet there are options that you can find which match the sacred tradition of the engagement ring, without actually being a ring. As the symbolism behind the gift, whether a ring, earrings, necklace or other, is still the same.

So, what pieces of jewellery can you use to mark the day in lieu of – or alongside – the typical engagement ring?

Earrings

One of the first options for an alternative engagement ring that you have is that of earrings. This choice can add an extra sparkle to the day, giving your love a memorable engagement gift that will look stunning both on a regular day and the eventual wedding day. Read more