Diamonds Grown in Laboratories - We Like Them and Sell Them - January 19, 2021 10:05Diamonds grown in laboratories offer the beauty and durability of mined diamonds at a fraction of the price.
In Which Cliff Changes His Mind About Moissanite March 16, 2019 17:52
Cliff was never a big fan of Moissanite. That all changed in 2015 and he explains why in this blog post.
Public Service Announcement - Don't Wear Rings To The Gym January 9, 2018 15:53Do NOT wear gold/silver/platinum rings to the gym.
Yellow Diamonds - Engagement Rings That Stand Out - $2,500 and up. January 5, 2018 12:17We love Fancy Yellow Diamonds. Take a look....
Blue Zircon Is A Rocking Gemstone - We Love It October 6, 2017 15:37
Blue Zircon is a natural gemstone - most folks immediately think of the man made cubic zirconia or "CZ" when you mention blue zircon. NO NO NO!
Blue Zircon is the traditional birthstone for December.
One of the main reasons we LOVE it is the way it sparkles because of the high refractive index and strong dispersion characteristics. What all the mumbo jumbo means is that blue zircon sparkles and winks like crazy!
It is our belief that blue zircon is waaaay underappreciated as an accent gem or even as the Main Event! Here is an engagement ring we just did for a couple. She stopped in the other day to tell me she had been getting a ton of compliments:
Another recent ring we did involved using blue zircon to accent the center stone:
One last example for you - we made this rose gold bracelet for a couple - blue zircon is her birthstone and we alternated them with diamonds. Suh-weet!
One closing statement - NONE of these pictures capture the sparkle and fire of blue zircon. You really need to see it in person to fully appreciate the POW! this gem will bring to your jewelry.
Ideal Cut Diamonds Without the Huge Price Tag At Chimera Design December 9, 2015 15:00
Did you ever notice how some diamonds sparkle a whole lot more than others? Well, it could be because of the way they were cut. A round diamond cut deeply causes the light to go out of the bottom - we call extreme cases of this Nail Heads. If the cutter shapes it too shallow - then the diamond can appear lifeless - we call them Fish Eyes.
A diamond cut to ideal proportions will return light like nothing else. No other gem can take light in and shoot it back at you like a diamond.
A couple of years ago we met Michael. He is a diamond cutter from New Jersey and is a master of his craft. When he stopped in the shop to show us what he could do, we bought one of his diamonds on the spot (Cliff never does that!). Since then we have introduced couples to his sparkle-fest diamonds. Laurie was so impressed, she wanted two of them for earrings!
There is one company that has been marketing ideal cut diamonds by showing customers the hearts and arrows visible in their diamonds using a viewing device. Te result is the heart shape patterns (above left) seen from the bottom of the diamond and the arrow patters (above right) seen from the top down.
The diamonds Michael cuts are done so well, you do not even need a special viewing device to see the arrow patterns! The ring above is set with a .50 ct VS2 I diamond Michael cut and the one below features an .81 ct from Michael.
New Solitaire Mounting for .50 ct, .75 ct. and 1.00 ct Round Diamonds October 21, 2015 14:33
We just received a catalog with some new jewelry from one of our favorite vendors - Stuller in Louisiana. (They are the same ones we work with in providing our Online Jewelry Design App. Try it - it is a blast.)
This one caught our eye. Simple and elegant - the prongs holding the round brilliant cut diamond flow out of the shank of the ring. This setting is available for .50 ct, .75 ct, and 1.00 ct round diamonds in your choice of 14kt white or yellow gold, as well as platinum.
As you can see from the pictures, there is a nice matching band available as well.
Engagement Rings V4 - Jewelry Fabrication September 24, 2015 11:55
We have a variety of ways to provide you with a unique engagement ring or other piece of jewelry. So far, we have shown you our Chimera Showcase online jewelry design app, which allows you the freedom to design your own on your phone, lap top or PC. We have also provided examples of CAD/CAM design with lost wax casting. Over the years we have established relationships with some high quality vendors for engagement rings, too.
Now we want to shine the spotlight on the way Julie makes engagement rings and other fine jewelry. It is called "fabrication" - instead of cutting a wax and casting the piece, Julie takes metal (gold, sterling and Mokume Gane) and she cuts, shapes, hammers, and solders it into jewelry. It allows you to do some things that cannot be done via lost wax and it gives a more organic or hand-crafted look to the jewelry.
The most popular example of engagement, partnership, or commitment rings that Julie makes are from when she creates two rings from one sheet of metal. Below are images of ring sets she has made for couples over the years - she has made them in sterling, mokume (a combination of sterling and copper that gives a wood grain look), as well as white and yellow gold. They have been just plain bands or set with gems and/or diamonds.
You can see the contours that make it evident that the rings were from one sheet of metal, even when they have a large size difference. Two rings from one piece of metal is her romantic riff on the "two shall become one" .
Engagement Rings V5 - Examples From All Sources September 23, 2015 19:00
We have posted the various ways we can provide YOU with the engagement ring of your dreams. Please allow me to recap the methods.
- You can use our online Chimera Showcase App.
- We can use CAD/CAM technology and lost wax casting.
- We have a variety of great vendors.
- Julie can fabricate engagement rings.
In this post, we just want to share some of the engagement rings we have done to give you ideas.
Engagement Rings V3 - Some of our great vendors September 23, 2015 12:50
We have a variety of ways we can provide you with an engagement ring or other piece of jewelry. We have shared examples of our online design at The Chimera Design Showcase, we have discussed our CAD/CAM and lost wax casting process in our blog.
We also have a great relationship with some vendors that we have gotten to know and trust over the years. We would like to show you some examples of the kind of rings they can provide.
Jose and Janine are VERY active people. Jose found a lovely diamond in our Estate section and he wanted a vintage look for Janine. He loved this setting because of the classic styling combined with the protective element of the cathedral setting (the ring comes up to the side of the diamond). We made the diamond even more secure by setting it in a half-bezel.
Justin inherited a diamond from his father's aunt. He wanted a simple, elegant setting. He and Cliff looked for something until he settled on this one - he decided to step out and have the ring cast in rose gold to make it stand out. We set the diamond in a 6 prong head.
Lori wanted to celebrate her marriage to David by setting her diamond into a new ring with that had some delicate accent diamonds. She also enhanced her marquise diamond by having us remount it into a halo head.
Jessica celebrated her 2nd decade with Scott by setting her diamond into a much more contemporary setting than he had previously. Their new ring is two tone and incorporates a half-bezel setting for their diamond.
Quinn picked out one of our Ideal Cut round half carats (VS2 I-J color for $1,400 to $1,700) cut by our friend Michael in New Jersey. The he had us set it in a halo-head.
Engagement Rings V2 - CAD/CAM and Lost Wax Casting September 23, 2015 12:15
We love technology at Chimera Design. Cliff and Jere have been working together using CAD/CAM and the art of lost wax casting to create custom engagement rings and other pieces of jewelry for almost ten years now. Here is a quick overview of the process:
- Cliff & Jere take your vision and create a CAD/CAM image.
- Once you approve the image a wax model is cut.
- You can inspect the wax before we cast it.
- We cast the model in your choice of precious metal.
- The stone(s) are set and BINGO - you have your jewelry creation.
Sometimes people come in with a design they have sketched out, sometimes they come in with pictures they have found on the net - sometimes they just come in with one or more diamonds looking for ideas. YES WE CAN - we can make a piece of jewelry as unique as you are.
Victoria had a yellow gold band with she loved. She wanted to celebrate 20 years with Todd by getting a new solitaire diamond set in a ring that would match the shape of the ring she had. This collage of photos shows the band, the CAD/CAM image, the wax model and the finished ring.
Juli saw some ring designs online. There were certain elements she loved, but others that she did not like. We incorporated the parts she loved AND used most of the diamonds from two rings she already had - added a new, larger center diamond and Juli had the ring of her dreams. Here are two CAD images, one of the ring and one of the top. Below that is the finished ring.
Susan had an idea for a new ring for her diamond. She loves nature and wanted something that resembled a tree branch for her diamond and she wanted it accented by some blue sapphires.
One of the most popular ring designs we have ever done was for Sandy. She had an idea based on two or three ring styles - she took the halo element from one, the bezel set diamonds front and rear from another, and diamonds combined with rubies from yet another. We have made several rings that were inspired by Sandy's but PLEASE don't let her know!!!
Sam saw a ring on the website of a very famous jewelry designer, but a) he did not want to pay the premium price and b) he wanted to use different sized diamonds. Yes, we can do that.
This last example is a ring we made for Peter and Sarah. Sarah wanted her ring to be made with an uncut, unpolished diamond. She also wanted to incorporate some small, cognac colored diamonds from a ring Peter had given her. Sarah sent us some images of rings she found on the web for a starting point. Here is the end result:
Engagement Rings V1 - Design Online September 23, 2015 10:20
This is the first of FOUR ways we offer engagement rings (and other jewelry) to YOU. We have a Showcase App that will let you try hundreds of configurations from your phone, laptop, or PC. Not only will you get instant images to see the changes you make, you also get real time estimates for what it will cost.
Above are 5 completely different designs Cliff did on the Chimera Showcase.
Simply click on the link here, then choose "Flexible Designs" and give it a try. It is FREE and you can try out all kinds of combinations with no risk or obligation. If you settle on a design you love, click "Add To Quote" and Cliff will contact you with a solid estimate on the price for your creation.
Click Here: Chimera Showcase.
Here are some examples of rings design by our customers using this app. The image on the left is taken from the Chimera Showcase and on the right is the actual finished ring.
First, is a 14kt white gold ring we made with Deb. She had inherited two diamonds from her mom and wanted to have a ring to remember her with. She wanted her birthstone (May - emerald) in the center of the ring. She considered several different shapes for the center, before settling on a round slightly larger than the two diamonds.
Next is a ring for Will and Allyson. Allyson is concerned about the environment and wanted to use only lab created gems. So we used Moissanite for the accent stones - Moissanite is a lab grown substitute for diamonds - combined with a lab created sapphire in the center. We started with a round center, but ended up with the oval shape lab sapphire you see on the right.
Just so you know the Chimera Showcase is NOT just for the ladies, here is a ring designed for Frank using the app. He wanted a modern, updated version of yellow gold and black onyx - a classic combination for men.
As you can see - there are almost limitless possibilities for YOU to create your dream engagement ring with the Chimera Showcase app.
Click and design!