Cobblestone Ring

September 2013
14 karat yellow gold, 18 karat yellow gold, citrine

The name of this bold and whimsical ring is appropriate, as it was literally cobbled together. Throughout the process of making various other jewelry projects, I wind up with lots of tiny pieces of scrap gold that either have to be sent to the refiner or creatively re-appropriated.

Here, I took scraps of 14k and 18k gold and balled them up with a torch. When super-heating the gold until it's in a liquid form, the surface tension on the tiny amount of metal is sufficient to pull it into a nearly spherical form. Each piece deforms slightly as it cools, allowing for some variety of shapes. After forming the gold spheroids, I welded them to each other in a ring shape from the inside of the ring so that there was no evidence of the welds on the surface of the ring. Only after the ring shape was complete was the inner flat surface of gold soldered in place to give the ring greater strength and a smoother appearance.

I chose the four citrine cabochons so that their shape complemented that of the gold "cobblestones." The yellow of the stones adds a third shade of yellow to the ring (supposing eyes that are sensitive enough to pick up on the difference between the 14k and 18k gold) and provides beautiful depth in contrast to the opacity of the metal.