Setting August's BirthstoneI had a sweet square, 4 mm peridot in my stash and decided, with August on the horizon, it was time to design and create a pendant.
Everything Starts With the Saw
I designed a long, slotted rectangle and chose to laminate a strip of reticulated sterling on one side for contrasting texture. The design sure offered lots of practice in sawing long, straight lines ;-)
There Was Also Trial By Fire
Here, I was soldering the reticulated strip onto the body of the pendant. I held the strips together with two pairs of soldering tweezers. The tweezers, of course, act as heat sinks, so it took a lot of heat to sweat solder the pieces together.
Pre-Finish the Metal Before Adding The Bail & Prong Setting
Once bail was set, I positioned the prong setting for the peridot and soldered both in one operation. That way, the job only required two grades of solder and there was much less chance of delaminating the reticulated strip.
I do love having the right tool for the job. Setting the peridot could be done with almost any pair of pliers but these prong setting pliers make doing a neat job much easier. The cast setting has tiny indents on the inside of each prong for the corners of the stone to fit into. With just the right amount of pressure, the stone gets locked in place. Too little pressure and it will surely pop out. Too much will just as surely crush the stone. It's a bit of a Goldilocks situation ;-)
This August lovely is now for sale in my etsy shop <www.etsy.com/shop/DixSterling>