She had a jewelry suite made years ago. The brooch and earrings were well-designed for the time, but in 2021 they looked very dated. Ultimately, it was just not her style any longer. She was my customer many years ago but had moved away. Happily, through the magic of the internet, she found me again! In chatting while doing a few repairs for her, she happened to mention this suite to me. I was eager for the opportunity to “upstyle” it to jewelry she will actually wear.
Opals just can’t take the heat
Opals never take heat well so part of the challenge was figuring out what can be done, heatless. This was truly working within restrictions. The colorful oval stone is actually an “opal triplet,” which is a slice of opal, a slice of black onyx and a slice of clear crystal assembled together. This process creates the look of a black opal, which is fairly rare. Set in a bezel it is very hard to determine if it is a triplet.
brooch converted to pendant
I felt the problem with the brooch was that the textured gold was preventing a clean look. We cut away the gold and then removed the pin stem and the catch from the back. It just so happens that it had a hidden bail to hang on a chain. It was beautifully set up, so the needed redesign was accomplished with a minimal amount of work to update the brooch into a pendant.
suite earrings redesigned
The earrings were a different story. Those she wanted completely changed. First we unseated all of the stones which were opals and diamonds. We clustered the diamonds to sit on the ear and reset the opals into the bezels. This had the effect of complementing but not necessarily matching the brooch now pendant.
The earrings were assembled from parts; and because the stones were not set, heat could be and was used. We went from an ornate pair of earrings and jackets to streamlined clusters. Lighter and easier to wear.
- redesigned 14k yellow gold jewelry suite with opal triplets and diamonds; earrings redesigned with diamond clusters; associated brooch converted to a pendant.
- Location: Boston, MA area