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A lovely couple asked me to design a bespoke platinum engagement ring using their existing black diamond, along with some black sapphires and white diamonds which held sentimental value. The concept for the design was something a bit goth, a bit Art Deco, a bit spooky, but also beautiful - and something Morticia Addams would be happy to wear! The couple wanted the ring to look vintage, with nothing new or modern looking in the design. They also wanted it to look striking and reflect their quirky style, but still be recognisable as a high-quality engagement ring and not costume jewellery.

In the week following their initial consultation, I emailed back and forth with the couple to ensure I knew exactly what style to aim for before beginning the CAD process. I must admit, I felt a bit out of my comfort zone as I had never designed any goth jewellery before! But while they initially seemed to be leaning towards a typically goth design with skulls and skeletons, it became apparent that the couple actually preferred styles that were traditionally Art Deco, which happens to be my favourite period for jewellery design. This gave me a solid basis to work from, and from there I set about making something Morticia would be happy to wear. 

The final CAD designs are shown below. The shape of the sapphire settings was intended to resemble a coffin, and the six claws holding the centre diamond were designed to have pointed ends for a more spooky feel. The shoulders of the ring were split and set with diamonds to make them appear more delicate. Eight of the white diamonds were the couple's existing stones - 34 additional diamonds were added to the design, all perfectly matched for colour and clarity, making the new stones indistinguishable from the old. The design left one sapphire unused, but I wanted to include it in the ring due to its sentimental value. The solution was to hide the sapphire in the reverse of the setting, only visible when the ring is removed. Most customers choose to have their platinum jewellery rhodium plated to give it a bright shiny finish, similar to white gold. But as the design brief for this ring was vintage and nothing 'new' looking, I recommended that the platinum was left unplated to show the natural patina of the metal. This has a darker and less shiny finish than the bright chrome effect of rhodium, and will age beautifully.

After reviewing the designs, the couple were unsure whether the projecting coffin settings might cause the ring to catch on things, so I tweaked the design slightly before manufacturing, bringing these sections down to sit flush with the sides of the hexagon. The pointed claws were also rounded off, to further reduce the risk of catching - a matter of practicality over design, as often needs to be the case! These changes can be seen in the finished ring below. It is always interesting to see how the CAD images compare to the finished piece - often it can be difficult for customers to picture how their jewellery will look in real life, from what is essentially a cartoon. Designs can look very blocky and clunky in CAD - the finished pieces are always much more delicate, as you can see from the pictures below. You can also see a video of this ring below - remember to watch it in HD for the best sparkle!

This was an interesting commission to work on, and I was very pleased with the finished ring - I think it is beautiful, authentically vintage looking, a little bit goth, and very Morticia! The couple were a joy to work with, and hopefully the ring will give a lifetime of joy in return. It is such a special feeling to know you've made someone a piece of jewellery that is completely unique and only for them - 7.9 billion people in the world, but only one of these rings!