With “E”: for Enamel

“E” for “Enamel”

The vitreous enamel is a material made in powdered glass mixed with metalic oxides in order to give the piece an immense variety of colors and tones. All materials must fuse at a very high temperature, which gives it more longevity and an endless beauty.

There are many types of enamel, although I’ll focus in those more used by jewellers:

With this technique what we’ll do is to carve, etch, die struck or cas tinto the surface of a metal objet, creating different forms and drawings. Then we’ll fill the holes with vitreous enamel.  It’s crucial for the success that the area to fill is well prepared to let the enamel stick to it in a homogeneous way.

The enamel will stay then like “locked” within the metal. Then, like in the rest of the techniques, you’ll have to polish and glaze it.



This technique works by soldering or adhering metal wires or thin strips placed on the edge of the piece. The holes in between will be filled with enamel in beautiful colors. Afterwards, it’s up to the artisan whether to sand deeply or just a little the piece, in order to equal the levels.


This is the most complicated technique, the most beautiful and delicate out of them though. The enamel here is applied in cells with no backing so light can shine through it. It has a stained-glass like appearance. Jewellers use this technique over the rest and the pieces get a spectaular beauty. It requires a high level of expertise though.

Let me show you a few images with samples of the different types of enamel.

Which one do you like the most?


With D: for Diadem

According to the legend, the Greek Dionysus was who first invented the head decoration called nowadays band. Actually the word diadem (as a band synonym) comes from “diadein” (old Greek) meaning “to bind around”.

Before the metallurgy evolution a few old civilizations like the Etruscans and the Scythians used to make wreaths out of flowers and leaves to adorn their heads.

Over the years their skills and techniques evolved to change their temporary flower wreaths for other bands more crafted and long-lasting. Nowadays flowers on diadems remind the ancestral meaning of diadems.

We nowadays distinguish between tiara and diadem, its origins are the same though. A diadem is an open ring stuck to the head used mostly to keep the hair out of the face. The tiara instead goes upper and depending on the size, dess up better in the front side of the head.

Although it’s said that during special events some men used to wear gold diadems in the old times, this kind o jewel is more usual among women.

Today we can find diadems made in plastic rimmed, metal, gold or silver. The first group are usually worn as a head-dress decorated with feathers, felt or even laces in different colours. On the other hand tiaras, usually made in gold, silver or precious and semi-precious gems are worn in very unique moments and weddings.

The diadems I’m using to illustrate this post have been made in silver and zircons, with glaze and freshwater pearls.




With A: Aderezo (Jewelry Suite)

“My Vintage Dictionary”

Aderezo: a harmonious set made up of various pieces, normally containing a necklace, ring, bracelets and earrings.

In France, two types of jewelry suites can be distinguished: “Grande Parure”, consisting of a tiara, brooch or jewel for the breast area, earrings, necklace and two identical bracelets; and the “Petit Parure”, consisting of a necklace, earrings and brooch.

We call any matching jewelry combination a suite, which would usually be made up of a necklace, earrings, a bracelet and a ring.

They are sets on which more work is invested than usual, seeing as gems must be found that coordinate in both color and texture.

It is more common to talk of jewelry suites for the female gender, however, we can also find masculine ones consisting of cufflinks, a tie clip, and key ring or pendant.

The last reproduction we did of a Baroque style suite consists of a necklace, bracelet and earrings. This suite is made from brass and semi-precious stones, and entirely handmade by our expert goldsmiths.


pulsera-flickrImages: @María Vintage Photography