Timothy Davies

As Marketing and IT manager for Regnas Jewelry it has been my pleasure to develop my love of jewelry. At www.regnasjewelry.com we showcase a full catalogue our products comprising rings, cufflinks and pendants as well as other hand crafted gift ideas. I am also involved in servicing our 41,000 plus fans on our Regnas Collection facebook page.

Jan 072014
 

Engraved Heraldic Cufflinks

Engraved Cufflinks

Cufflinks first came into being in the French courts of Louis XIV as the result of the fashion of ruffled cuffs which required some mechanism to hold them together once the arm had been drawn through the sleeves.

The  boutons de manchette, or “sleeve buttons,” were the forerunner of the cuff links being constructed of 2 coloured glass buttons joined by a single chain link. By 1715 however we see examples of valuable stones, usually diamonds, joined by expensive gold chains.

Soon after this we see the development of customized cuff link designs which often included either initials or crests of various descriptions. So began the process of engraving cufflinks.

It also became more and more fashionable to match the designs of cufflinks with other man’s jewelry notably their rings. As these often held the designs of family crests as referred to in our article about Signet Rings, It was an obvious move to include these heraldic family crest designs on cufflinks as well.

Monograms became popular as did plain initials as cuff link wearers seek to express their individuality. Nowadays corporate emblems and virtually any design can be found adorning cufflinks but the designs are usually related to some individual aspect of the wearer whether it be family heritage, a hobby, a sport or a belonging to some organisation.

At Regnas we favour the engraving of semi precious stones as an alternative to gold or silver. We love the individuality of every natural stone and consider this adds extra charm and interest to our range of cufflinks. Red Agate, Black Onyx, Bloodstone, Lapis and Rock Crystal  are among the stones we find suitable for engraving.

We also have 3 distinct variations to our methods of working the stones.

Engraving intaglio:
We engrave into the stone in the traditional way as seen in the heraldic crest cufflinks above.

Masonic Engraved Cufflinks

Sculpted:
We also sculpt designs from the stone as the cameo craftsmen have done since Roman times. Although cameos are strictly carvings with 2 contrasting colours our method of engraving in this carved style is along the same lines and creates wonderful clear relief designs such as these Masonic Red Agate swivel cufflinks.

Rock Crystal Sub Engraved Cufflinks

 

Sub-engraved:
This is another method of applying design to our cufflinks. It requires a stone with some degree of translucency so that the design will show through the oval or cabochon to which it is engraved. Rock Crystal is perhaps the most transparent of all our stones and by reverse engraving the design to the bottom of them, and mounting them to the cuff link chassis, we get some wonderful effects such as these Templar Cross links.

Certainly there is some choice when it comes to selecting engraved cufflinks but not only in the design but also the methods of engraving.

You can view a selection of Regnas engraved cufflinks here.

Jan 062014
 

Regnas Stone sealing ring

Regnas Stone Signet & Seal Rings

Signet rings are often called seal rings and refer to a special design of the face of a ring. Their use stretches back through history to times when communications were carried and delivered by hand. How could you verify that the document was unopened in transit and that it was from the person it was supposed to be from?

The answer was to seal the document with some wax and imprint the seal or signature of the sender to that wax.

The designs of the seals were often quite intricate and would require skilled craftsmen to create them with meticulous detail. Furthermore the seal would have to be a mirror image so that the correct image would appear in the seal. Often the design incorporated heraldic devices unique to the sender and these heraldic designs were incorporated into family crests.

No wonder that these signet or seal rings are still as popular today as they were centuries ago. Wearing such a ring shows pride in ones family, heritage and lineage. They are also known for their beauty as the detailed designs are a truly magnificent tribute to the craftsmen that create them.

Many metals have been used to create these rings but at Regnas we specialise in crafting rings with semi precious stones. Depending on the Mohs value of hardness, certain stones can be engraved to the required depth and with the extent of detail needed to leave a perfect impression to heated wax.

Diamonds have a Mohs hardness of 10 whilst gold only comes in at a 2.5. Of course we cannot engrave to diamonds but at the same time many stones have a significantly higher mineral hardness than gold.

The Onyx family of stones have a Mohs value of 6-7 and is very suitable for our purposes. It is hard enough to take the rigours of heavy engraving without chipping and cracking but is not so hard that our craftsmen and women cannot display the details of the designs on them. Other stones that fit the bill are bloodstone, the various agates and rock crystal. Amethyst can have a Mohs scale of 7 but if the quality is not of the very highest standards any impurities can result in damage to the stone whilst undergoing the engraving.

When we engrave to stone we have to look very carefully at the piece we are working with. Very often, even at the last minute, the stone will crack or chip and hours of delicate work have to be discarded.

Regnas Stone Sealing Ring

 

Here at Regnas we take great pride in the variety of the signet and seal rings that we have created over the years. very often they are unique, custom designs that will become family heirlooms and treasured through the ages. We love the diversity and uniqueness of working with natural stones harvested from the ground which, we believe, adds even more to the value and quality of our jewelry.

You can view examples of these rings here.