Jewelery Design Basics

jewelery Design

Jewelery Design involves combining artistic expression with the engineering challenges of jewelry fabrication and stone setting. While the precise design process varies depending on the type of jewelry being made, all creations benefit from mastering basic design principles. In this article we’ll explore the concepts of balance, emphasis, movement, proportion, contrast and unity, all helpful tools for the jewelry maker to have at their disposal.

The best way to learn jewelry designing is hands on experience. While many people have learned to sketch and use jewelry design software to create a detailed rendering of their creations, it is hard to grasp the full range of possibilities without working with actual materials and techniques. A great jewelry designer is able to translate a detailed CAD design into a resin model, and then into a piece of jewelry that is actually wearable and functional.

Some types of jewelry require intricate designs that must consider how a stone will be secured within the setting, and the weight and size of the piece. Other pieces of jewelry, such as beaded necklaces, are much less structured and allow the artisan to work with more free-form stones and materials. Regardless of the design challenge, all types of jewelry must be well-designed and considered from a wearability perspective to be successful.

The first step in the jewelry design process is finding inspiration. This can be done through a deep dive into the history of a specific period, or it can be as simple as examining the collection at your favorite jewelry store. Once a jewelry designer has determined their inspiration they will need to create a rough drawing of the piece. This can be as simple as a basic outline that focuses on the main concept, or it can include more detailed sketches of individual components such as prongs and beads.

After a rough sketch is completed, the designer will often move on to a more detailed 3D model of their creation using software such as Jewelry CAD Dream or Rhino Gold. This allows them to see the design from all sides and can open up additional options for bringing their creation to life such as 3D printing or casting services. Many artisans will continue to tweak their original design throughout the process of creating their piece, whether it be a simple alterations or a more extensive revision.

The final step is to create a unified design. This is the most challenging aspect of jewelry design to master, but it can also be the most rewarding. A unified design is one that feels whole and complete, like it is more than the sum of its parts. Taking the time to thoroughly consider all aspects of a design is vital for achieving this, and it can be especially beneficial for those who are new to jewelry making. A successful unified design can help a jewelry artist create a finished product that is more than just functional, but truly a piece of art.