Many of the items in our store come directly from our workshop where most of the casting takes place and where our experienced jewellers and setters craft beautiful items of jewellery.
It is to here that gemstones arrive from continents afar and are selected or rejected according to our stringent quality control guidelines. We use quality gemstones from around the world in the manufacture of our range of fine Irish jewellery. Here too all finished orders are thoroughly inspected prior to being packaged and prepared, ready to be shipped to their final destination.
Selecting and setting gemstones of the right type and size is one of the stages in the process of creating a beautiful Claddagh Ring.
A ring starts off as a lump of silver in the hands of a jeweller whose task it is to produce a master pattern. This master pattern is then duplicated and a mold is made from which, casting by the lost-wax method takes place, producing the final product. This is then finished in the workshop.
Whether its feeding gold through a milling machine, a procedure which is repeated until the jeweller ends up with a workable piece of gold of the correct gauge, or using a polishing machine to bring out the shine on a newly created Claddagh ring, it all happens in the workshop.
Separate components such as the shank, the crown and the head are fused together by the jeweller using heat. This process is known as soldering.
The finishing on a fine piece of jewellery is what distinguishes it and after an item has been formed and set, it is polished using rotating brushes of varying strengths.
The manufacturing process is a grimy business and as a piece of jewellery enters the final stages of production it needs to be thoroughly cleaned in order to remove accumulated dirt. We mainly use an ultrasonic bath, a machine that sends small pulses of energy through warm water to dislodge any stubborn grime. For more delicate items and especially for those pieces with emeralds we use a steam cleaner. Depending on the item gilding or rhodium plating may take place as well.
The final touch involves engraving the finished product with the customers personal message.