Jewelry Design – What’s First, Second & Third?

Jewelry Design – What’s First, Second & Third?

You have a great jewelry design you just KNOW everyone will LOVE! Ok, what’s first, second and third on your list to make that design a reality? Hmmm, what to do?


First and foremost we want to start with an image of your design. CAD drawing, Word/PowerPoint drawing or a hand drawn sketch all work for us. Once we have the sketch we can start developing sizes which will give us volumes.


CAD Design 300x225 Jewelry Design   Whats First, Second & Third?
CAD Image – Letter Charms in Various Sizes

Tools To Enhance Jewelry Design

G&S Jewelry uses many state of the art tools to support designing elegant jewelry. These include CAD artwork renderings, 3D Printing and Vacuum Investment Casting. Much of our equipment has been purchased at Rio Grande. They have the equipment and experienced support personnel, hence we recommend them to everyone in the jewelry industry.

After casting and tumbling is complete personalization can be accomplished through laser engraving. Here is a video of our machine in action! Your Design Here Video of Laser Machine,

More information can be seen here from the Rio Grande website: Neutec Lightscribe Engraver

Material Selection For Jewelry Design

We can then apply the material density of the alloy you want your jewelry to be made with. This can be any of the karat golds, sterling silver, bronze, or lead-free pewter. G&S Jewelry does them all! Therefore we have a material for almost every price point.

Cost Analysis

With this information in hand, we can now develop a cost analysis. Here we can evaluate the cost of manufacture against your sell price. Consequently you can make a decision well before spending money on inventory otherwise you may have unsold inventory. Met your price point? met; GREAT! We can then move quickly to building prototypes.

However, if price point is too high as a consequence we need to look at the design again. For this reason, we can look at changing the dimensions, changing the material or both. Thinner or smaller will reduce weight. Changing the material from a high cost material such as 18 karat gold to 14 karat or sterling silver will also reduce costs.


Now that the cost is complete. We have all the sizes identified. Because of this we can now produce 3D renders. Once the renders are approve; the masters can be produced directly.

B9 3D Printing 225x300 Jewelry Design   Whats First, Second & Third?
B9 3D Printer

G&S Jewelry Mfg uses both traditional milling, a reducing process as well as three dimensional (3D) printing an additive process. In contrast; the 3D printing produces a much smoother surface. Furthermore; our best machine the B9 3D printer shown above is much faster than our milling machine.

Casting Your Jewelry Design

Finally this is where we make design come to life! Whether by vacuum investment casting or centrifugal casting, molten metal cast in a mold completes the formation!


Contact us and let us know how we can help you!

You Design It – Charms and Bracelets

G&S Jewelry Mfg is pleased to announce our new You Design It – Charms and Bracelets project! We wish to extend our in-house design and manufacturing capabilities to you our valued customer.

You Design It – Charms and Bracelets

Our Computer Aided Design (CAD), Model Master and 3D Printing  along with our Laser Engraving tools deliver a broad array of tools for the designer to put their unique interests on a piece of jewelry.

By and large most of our customers have artistic abilities in hand working, graphic arts and the tools to work on their own.  Above all they know in their mind’s eye what they want. In the same way, they may have limits on moving from ideation or concept to a prototype. By the same token the gap between a prototype to full scale production is the limiting constraint.

As a result of these gaps; G&S Jewelry Mfg created their own design center. All things considered, this approach offers our customers significant leveraging of dedicated equipment worth thousands of dollars. In other words, our design studio is your design studio!

Advances in digital communication and useful tools such as video conferencing and mobile communication allow for “face-to-face” meetings thousands of miles away. Accordingly, you can access us and our capabilities to see a 3D rendering or a laser engraving in real time. Of course you can always visit our facility, but the speed of business is increased considerably in this manner.

You design it – charms and bracelets works in several ways. A single piece for a custom requirement, a master for molding or full scale manufacturing. This is dependent on the nature of the piece, the materials involved and anticipated volume requirement.

Tools of Our Trade

The video link below illustrates our Neutec LightScribe laser engraving system can provide on a sterling bracelet blank.

Your Unique Design Here Video of Display

Laser LightScribe Machine Panel Photo 300x225 You Design It – Charms and Bracelets

Neutec LightScribe 20W Laser Engraving Machine

Finally, realization of reduced design costs.

We are a small woman owned manufacturing company with 100% of our manufacturing operations in the USA.

Questions? Contact us here we would be very pleased to help.

G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!

The G&S Jewelry Development Center is open for business at last!

We are very pleased to announce that our Jewelry Development Center is open for business. We are frequently approached by customers for support in developing a new piece or a whole new line. It is important to realize that there are many steps from ideation to creation. With this intention in mind, we try and compress this process down to a short time interval. To demonstrate our commitment to this process we felt it necessary to closely locate all the necessary equipment in one compact location. This permits us to go through the steps with our customers in detail. In particular, advances in mobile communications and internet meeting permit “face-to-face” meetings from thousands of miles away.

The information below provides a virtual tour of our capabilities! What you will see will include:

our use of lasers, Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) , 3D Printing, and automatic controlled intuitive systems.

Laser Engraving


Laser Engraving Ring 1 300x225 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
Neutec 20W Laser Engraving A Wedding Band

Laser Welding

Laser welding is an excellent technique in jewelry manufacturing. It is very precise and therefore useful for small work without disturbing large components. For example; routinely broken jewelry components accept laser welded repairs. In addition small elements of a different metal into a design. Namely karat gold is welded into a sterling silver base. Moreover, the explicit contrast in color with corresponding attention to cost and ease of use adds to the designers’ toolbox.

LaserStar Laser Welding Machine 300x282 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
LaserStar Welding Machine

CAD 3D Renderings

CAD technology delivers the imaging and key properties such as size, volume, clearances to the designer. Making informed decisions on weights and therefore cost, are important factors for pricing.

CAD Design 300x225 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
CAD Image – Letter Charms

Interactive Design

Using the power of digital communication; design changes can be made working from afar. Or we can sit with you in our design lab and handle it one on one.

Ideation Picture 300x170 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
Letter Charm/Tag Designed By YOU!

Precision Control Riace Wax Injection System

We added a Riace Wax Injection system to our design center. This allows us to evaluate the correct settings for injection prior to turning out to Production. Just another step in development!

3D Printing System

3D printing adds a new depth of capability. Consequently very complex parts can be grown literally from the “ground up”!

3D Printing a Master Piece 300x225 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
G&S 3D Printing System Growing A Cylindrical Design

Model Master CAD-CAM Milling for Masters

Milling produces traditional flat items such as charms, pendants and buttons with ease. Driven by a variety of CAD programs the milling machine cuts wax and butterboard precisely to make masters.

Metal Master CAD Master Milling System 300x225 G&S Jewelry Development Center Open For Business!
Model Master Milling Machine

Let us help you make your dreams into a reality! Click here more information?

G&S Jewelry Mfg – Your One Stop Sterling Silver Casting Partner

G&S Jewelry Mfg offers our customers a one stop solution to sterling silver investment casting! Here is a short summary of what we can provide in terms of products and services:

Products – Earrings, Pendants, Charms, Bracelets, Bolos, Belt Buckles, Belt Tips, Rings, Pins and Concho Components

DSCN0617 300x225 G&S Jewelry Mfg   Your One Stop Sterling Silver Casting Partner
Irish Knot Ring

Services – Design & Mastering, Mold Making, Wax Injection, Vacuum Investment Casting, 3 Stage Tumbling, Hand Buffing, Silversmithing, Assembly, Inlay, Laser Welding, Laser Engraving and Antiquing.

3D Printing a Master Piece 300x225 G&S Jewelry Mfg   Your One Stop Sterling Silver Casting Partner
G&S 3D Printing System Growing A Cylindrical Design

We can work with you from a hand drawn sketch to a complete set of tools and everything in between!

G&S Jewelry Mfg is also a very green casting company! We have reduced our water consumption and effluent discharges considerably and will continue our programs for reduction, recycle and reuse. We want to be a market leader in sustainable manufacturing.

GS Recycling Logo 225x300 G&S Jewelry Mfg   Your One Stop Sterling Silver Casting Partner
G&S Jewelry Mfg Is Serious About Recycling

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman owned business with our operations solely in the USA.

We hope that you will give us the opportunity to work with you to make your designs a reality!


Celebrating Native American Handmade Sterling Jewelry!

We recently had a beautiful piece of sterling jewelry handmade by Ronald Tom at Nakai Trading here in Albuquerque. Ron is a Navajo craftsman with many years of experience and carries on the Native American tradition of handmade and handcrafted sterling jewelry. The Sterling Silver was supplied by W.R. Cobb in East Providence and consisted of 6″ wide stock for the base and a special #4 Comfort Low Dome for the rails on the top. The rails were soldered in place by hand and the piece oxidized in liver of sulfur and then all of the upper surfaces polished to a high shine.

The photos below show the outstanding result in a size 5-1/2 cuff bracelet.

Handmade Sterling Bracelet Side View 300x225 Celebrating Native American Handmade Sterling Jewelry!
Handmade Sterling Silver Cuff Bracelet
Handmade Sterling Bracelet 225x300 Celebrating Native American Handmade Sterling Jewelry!
Handmade Bracelet – Low Dome Soldered to Solid Base


We thank Ron for his beautiful work and can say with 100% certainty that this bracelet will be worn and yes, shown off for many years to come!

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM.



Metal Shrinkage – The Why’s and How’s of Metal Shrink

As designers and casters we have to work around the fundamental physics of making metal products via casting. Whether it is vacuum investment casting, gravity pour casting, centrifugal casting, horizontal or vertical continuous casting, or grain/powder casting, the transition from the liquid state to the solid state will include a volume change. For most casting alloys the shrink is minimized so that the fill is consistent and the external surfaces conform to the surfaces of the mold or die. Vacuum investment or centrifugal casting ensure that the walls of the mold have metal drawn or thrust upon it first and the metal following the initial part of the stream “backfills” the solidified shell against the wall of the mold.

Important commercial alloys generally have shrinkage of between 1 and 3%. This is true for popular precious metal alloys such as karat gold and sterling silver. These alloys will vary amongst themselves as there are a great many alloys, for color, casting or working properties with minor metal additions.

For both investment and centrifugal casting; we want to minimize porosity, which is in itself an outgrowth of shrinkage. If porosity exists; we want it to be internal only, not on a visible surface that will detract from the beauty of the design. The nature of solidification and the amount of shrink back from the wall of the mold is important for maintaining detail of the surface. Highly textured surfaces or designs with fine filigree can be diminished if the shrinkage is too much.

In sterling silver adding a small amount of zinc to the alloy reduces the shrink during solidification. The photos shown below illustrate a the casting button for standard 925 Ag-Cu alloy (top) and a corresponding 925 Ag-Cu alloy with zinc additions (bottom).

Standard STG Button 300x225 Metal Shrinkage   The Whys and Hows of Metal Shrink
Standard Sterling Silver Investment Cast Button


Deox STG Button 300x225 Metal Shrinkage   The Whys and Hows of Metal Shrink
Deox Sterling Silver Investment Cast Button


Both meet the 925 minimum silver requirement, but the shrink on the standard sterling silver button has a pronounced concavity whereas the alloy with the zinc addition is noticeably convex on the edges and flat across the middle.

Both of the these buttons are as-cast and shown after a regular pickle to remove residual investment. Note the finer grain structure in the deox sterling silver button with the zinc additions. The fine grain structure aids the investment caster in that the porosity will be smaller in size, more distributed and less pronounced in larger surfaces.

This coupled with the tarnish resistance adds value to incorporation of the alloy into the design. Though it is more costly than standard sterling, the attributes for reduced shrinkage, reduced porosity and tarnish resistance can outweigh the added cost.

Let us work with you and your design team to show you how to design around shrinkage issues in your jewelry.

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM.



Happy Saint Patrick’s Day

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day to all our Irish friends and those that are just Irish for the day!

Happy St. Patricks Day 300x286 Happy Saint Patricks Day
Happy St. Patrick’s Day

To honor Saint Patrick, G&S Jewelry Mfg has a line of Irish themed belt buckles, rings and pins. This way you can show off and wear your Irish pride any day of the year!

Click here to see a photo of some of our items. If you don’t see what you like; contact us!

G&S Jewelry is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM. We are right in the heart of the beautiful Southwest!

The Ides of March is Upon Us!

In the Roman calendar; the Ides of March – March 15th was originally based upon the first full moon of the new year. Many early religions had ceremonies or observances based upon lunar activity.  In 44 BC, the Ides of March took on a more sinister connotation as this was the day that Julius Caesar was stabbed to death. In modern times a full moon is often associated with odd behavior and folk lore has it that various creatures change shape or nature during a full moon.

Thankfully we don’t have to worry about werewolves, but G&S Jewelry Mfg has a line of beautifully crafted silver jewelry just in case…

We can work with you and develop your designs; from Ideation to Creation! Let our team of talented designers, silversmiths, casters and finishers help you reach your goals! Challenge us!

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM.

Tags for Jewelry

G&S Jewelry Mfg can provide you with a wide range of options for jewelry tags. You can literally place tag your jewelry with your name, logo or trademark to tell the customer who you are!

We can work closely with you to develop the artwork for the tag. The artwork can be in virtually any form, CAD files, a Microsoft Office document or a hand sketch. We can also add designs to both sides of the tag. For instance; your name or logo on one side and “14 KT” or “925” on the other.

Once we have approval for the artwork, we can then produce a master either by cutting it in wax or 3D growing it. The master then will be molded or cast and then molded to form the production basis for subsequent wax injection.

The waxes will then be mounted to a tree and investment cast per the normal protocols. The tags can be produced in karat gold, sterling silver and any one of our casting bronzes.

If you are interested in evaluating adding tags to your jewelry contact us through our link.  Or send us your artwork to:

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM.

Diamond Cutting – Adding A Unique Style To Your Design

G&S Jewelry Mfg can provide diamond cutting to virtually any of your jewelry designs! This process is applied by hand by our skilled artisans, so no two pieces are alike! Flat or curved surfaces take on a new and faceted look capturing and reflecting the light in all directions. Here is an example of a piece that was lightly diamond cut on a raised surface.


Example of Diamond Cutting On A Belt Buckle 300x225 Diamond Cutting   Adding A Unique Style To Your Design
Example of Diamond Cutting on A Belt Buckle

Note the faceted appearance and the enhanced reflectivity of the surfaces. Small or large areas can be highlighted after all finish work is completed to maximize the contrast. The diamond tool is very sharp so the surfaces cut are very smooth, further enhancing the way that light is reflected.

If you have any questions about this or any of our other processes; feel free to contact us.

G&S Jewelry Mfg is a small woman-owned business located in Albuquerque, NM.