This is a pendant I made for a friend and colleague who saw a golden rutilated quartz pendant I’d made as a giveaway and wanted to know if I could make her something similar.
So I found a stone she liked that was very similar to the first pendant, ordered it, and when it arrived I realized it was faceted (the first pendant had a smooth cabochon). Since facets really deserve prong settings I decided to make my first double gallery (that refers to the “basket” that the stone sits in) prong setting with V-shaped prongs, which were also a first for me.
After watching a LOT of instructional videos on YouTube I got to work. The galleries are made from 16g square wire with 16g spacers, then I created the V prongs for the ends. Why did it need V prongs, you ask? Because any stone with a pointy end on it like a marquise (the shape of this stone), pear, or square needs extra protection on the pointy corners to make sure they don’t get chipped. A V prong has a groove cut out for the girdle of the stone to fit into, plus an extra pocket burred out for the very tip of the corner that protects it from being banged around and chipped.
Said a prayer to Hephaestus and soldered on the V prongs and round prongs. To my delight nothing fell off or melted in the process so I trimmed everything, soldered on a jump ring and bail, polished off any extra solder, tumbled it in the burnisher, cut the grooves for the stone’s girdle and the pockets for the stone’s tips, then carefully seated the stone…
…and it popped right in without a problem. I tell you, I was shocked. I could have simply pushed in the prongs and rounded their tops but because this is a big ol’ stone I wanted the extra security of claws holding it in place along with the V prongs. The client has seen a picture and is happy with it, which is all that matters in the end.
But the really nice thing about this is that I can now make a setting for my teardrop moldavite (a forest green, olive green or blue greenish vitreous silica projectile glass that was formed by a meteorite impact in southern Germany and is considered a gemstone) and wear it as a pendant.