There is a lot of scroll/leaf/fern fiddlehead pattern work combined
with floral motifs but generally, wriggle cuts are not used.
I have to make a correction. Wriggle cuts are used on the
commercial, mass market pieces that are generically referred to as
Hawaiian Heirloom. Wriggle cuts are fast, hence inexpensive fillers
that allow the engraver to cover large areas of gold quickly.
Shading cuts and fine stippling are used on the more expensive
As with any kind of engraving, you have the whole range from
beautifully designed and cut (actual quality of cuts-graceful
transitions/ angles of cut/ variation of thick and thin/deep and
shallow, etc) to generically patterned with lots of filler and
mediocre cut (choppy, bad entrance/exit, burs, minimal repertoire of
cuts, etc.). I guess it’s something you need to see side by side to
really appreciate. For the untrained eye, there is so much sparkle
and “noise” that price is more important than artistry.
It’s a pet peeve of mine that the once prized "Hawaiian Heirloom"
jewelry niche has been driven down to being a price-driven game.
This has even gone to the point that some of it is even being cast
with designs cut into the models. Also, a lot of the lettering is
machined with pantographic mills.
Sorry for the rant.