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Family heirloom can be defined as ‘’a valuable possession that has belonged to a family for several generations’’. Jewelry is an integral part of almost any family heirloom for a number of reasons. However, not every piece of jewelry has heirloom jewelry quality. Still, there is a type of jewelry that possesses undeniable heirloom quality: die struck jewelry.
The story of how die struck jewelry is made is truly a fascinating one. There is only a handful of die struck jewelry manufacturers in the world, which makes the jewelry even more desirable.
If you are looking for jewelry of heirloom quality in San Diego, here’s why die struck jewelry should be your first choice.
Die striking is a complex process that involves the use of equipment and tools dating back to the 19th century. To yield the best results, jewelers have to possess a remarkable level of skill and boast relevant experience. They need to be fully equipped to operate delicate die striking machines. They often need to learn from experience, since operating manuals are scarce.
In addition to professional excellence, these jewelers have to evince certain personal qualities such as unyielding meticulousness, attention to detail, unwavering calmness and patience. With respect to die struck jewelry, the hands of a jeweler have to be as steady as those of a surgeon.
Also, die striking involves the use of sophisticated techniques, some of which can no longer be learned except through direct tutelage in a workshop. For example, Van Craeynest artisans use a secret and unique antiquing technique. It’s been preserved for nine decades through the apprenticeship system at Van Craeynest workshop, and it’s still used today.
Some of the allure of die struck jewelry stems from the fact that the jewelry is newly made, but has all the characteristics of antique jewelry. For example, Van Craeynest jewelry is made to replicate original designs from the Victorian and Art Deco eras. What’s more, the jewelry is made using authentic machines used in the Van Craeynest factory at the turn of the 20th century.
Even if you have a piece of antique or vintage jewelry, it is unlikely to be as well preserved as the newly-made piece of die struck jewelry. Although antique jewelry stands as a testament to tradition and history, die struck jewelry achieves the same effect with original Victorian and Art Deco designs, but has the added advantage of being new.
The process of making die struck jewelry is felt to be superior to other jewelry-making processes, for example, jewelry casting. During the die struck craftsmanship process, the metal’s configuration alters so as to become more resilient. As a result, it’s less prone to everyday wear and tear, which is a crucial feature of heirloom jewelry. After all, heirloom is meant to last, and die struck jewelry is made to last for decades and longer.
The change in molecular configuration makes a die struck metal more convenient for further processing and adding finer detail. For instance, piercing a die struck piece is more convenient than piercing a cast piece, unless it’s done by hand. However, a cast piece is rarely pierced by hand, which means that a jeweler cannot add as many fine details as they can on a die-struck piece.
Moreover, a die striking process ends with stringent quality control, as every reputable die struck jewelry manufacturer wants to ensure the durability of each and every piece they produce. This is an important guarantee of quality.
Unlike cast jewelry, die struck jewelry is not intended for mass production. Instead, the focus is on producing a limited number of unique handmade pieces that cannot be found in every jewelry store. Owning a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry gives a sense of exclusivity, which can also be metaphorical. For instance, many grooms-to-be choose a unique die struck engagement as a symbol of their commitment to their loved one, as well as the uniqueness of the person the ring is given to.
Due to its superior quality, durability, artistic value and exclusivity, die struck jewelry makes for an excellent store of value. These qualities make any die struck jewelry piece able to retain and increase in value for decades to come. What’s more, die struck jewelry is made of quality precious metals such as gold and platinum and gemstones like diamonds, which are considered universal stores of value.
At Emerson & Farrar Fine Jewelry, we give you the opportunity to start your very own family heirloom tradition! We are the owner of the Van Craeynest brand and offer a variety of die struck jewelry, including engagement rings.
Visit us in store in Redlands or Palm Springs and browse through our collection of die struck jewelry. You are sure to find the perfect gift for your loved one, be it a future spouse or a family member. In turn, the piece you choose is sure to last for generations to come!Contact Us Today