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The Art and Jewelry of J.Grahl Design


Guess it was a dump question - and shows how little I know about fine jewelry & diamond setting !

From my brief research it seems that pave settings have holes where the stones are set - to let light through I suppose.

So I guess I answered my own question.
Back to your regular programing :slight_smile:

Live Oak Studios


Hi patty,
No dumb questions, however my answers might be challenged …
These are very old single cuts, poorly proportioned, not what one would generally pick for a project. They have shallow pavilions, heavy crowns and are prone to leak light from behind and not a apt to be as bright from the top. The idea was to create an erratic, pebbly texture, the color play was the surprise bonus…
If you go looking for these stones, ask for “Break-out” material. Pawn shops generally have it as well diamond cutters.


A gift of nature, and a gift of the heart.
This engagement ring was for an East Coast friend who polled his sister, sister-in-law (to be) and every girl he could find, running my sketches through the gang to make sure he was doing the right piece.
It rarely happens that way, I usually prefer to have the “intended” be part of the process.
In the end this is the design I fabricated, Platinum, 2.20 ct Diamond along with the diamond accents. (all were happy…)


The definition of a great friend, and a Boxer.
What do you do for a guy with size 13 fingers, the strength of a bull… and a heart of (well, in this case) platinum, titanium, black jade and stainless steel…
The super ring
almost indestructible, machined in titanium which will last till the end of time most likely, Platinum for the monogram and details,
and hand made stainless steel screws.
On Chris Van Dusen, this is in perfect proportion.
And, that is the game in a way. making a piece that fits the character, is made to last, has visual interest and fits the vision of the client.


Here is another Cross, Part of our Atocha project, but really having nothing to tie it to the wreck, simply to explore the design themes of the 16th & 17th centuries.
This is hand fabricated in sterling silver (dark background) and 18K yellow gold.
The stones represent the primary “Gems” of the era, Pearls, Sapphires, Emeralds and Rubies. Of all these, pearls (natural as there was no culturing for another 275 years), were the most valuable and coveted. In this piece’s case, the pearls are cultured.


I love things that move and subtle sounds…
These were modeled with the thought of Wind Chimes.
Great little emeralds, about 1 ct+ each.
Fabricated in 18K yellow gold and platinum, a bit of diamond and the hopes that the client heard the same sounds I envisioned in my mind…
(well… maybe)

Sylvia Bissonnette photo


Here is another of the short lived Western series.
I was really looking for an excuse to work with 22k, so the arrowheads came out of that exploration.
I love the color of 22K, though 95% of what I do is platinum, that doesn’t stop me from playing every now and then.
The four pieces below are all set with tourmaline, are constructed hollow with 20 ga. sheets domed to give form and seam welded on the edges. The texture around edge of the stones is created with filings, beaded up and fused to the 22k.
The sheet was hammered before construction. Platinum is used for the wrappings, bezels for the stones and in several of the bales (the inside surface, for strength).

Sylvia Bissonnette photo


Ceylon Sapphire intrigues me.
I love the brightness, and while deep rich color is what most gravitate to, the cooler icy blues work particularly well in platinum.
To my eye… there is a gentle balance with lighter, cooler stones against platinum.
This is one of those examples, for another Irishman, wanting a bit of home woven into the design, hence the Celtic knot design in the gallery.
All hand fabricated , including the gallery (wirework, not pierced).


@JimGrahlDesign is that a 5ct+ stone, precision re-cut :wink: Looks familiar…


It Should,
You used to own it :slight_smile:


So if You haven’t picked up on it yet, Seth and I are great friends.
Great friends get great pieces, and this one was special for a few reasons. The natural pink diamond pear shape is certainly one, as are the equally nice pink diamond melee , the opposing side has a D color pear along with matching melee., This was a tough fabrication, yet the end piece strived for balance and flow over flash.


Diamonds are so many things,
A crystal,
cut, a gem,
set, a statement,
The statement, in this case,… Thank you for years of devotion and support.
This gift, a 5 ct D, VVS1 oval, bordered by a pair of trillion shape diamonds to match, all housed in a fabricated platinum ring with a lot of little diamonds.
For her enjoyment, as well as yours…


Size may not count…
But this one was well earned
A 5 ct center stone, surrounded with princess cut and round diamonds.
A Gift from a loving family to their mother.
She was promised this by her husband for many years, as the family’s wealth grew, and she supported her husband’s ventures, she patiently waited tor the promised gift. It never came, her husband passed on and she thought she would never be able to spend the money on herself.
In comes the family, wanting to reward their mom for her patience and generosity, they came to me and asked for me to create a piece. I requested we bring Mom into the picture and make sure she would get exactly what she wanted, I just couldn’t talk about the money with her.
She was a bit shy about all this at first, then, as she embraced the idea and the gift from the families heart, we came up with this piece.
Hand fabricated in platinum, D color , VVS1, 5(+) ct center .


It must be diamond week…
Here is another, a 4.5 ct, F, VVs2 round diamond, in a hand fabricated platinum mounting.
Guys… I’m sensing a trend here… this is another for a neighbor and great friend. Together, she and her husband built a national auto parts salvage business. She was always promised a reward of a substantial diamond, again a promise not kept.
This time hubby simply left, not the world, but her. Fortunately she was beyond bright and awarded a settlement of substance, an investment that actually paid her for her role in this company (still going strong).
Comes the request, Make me a heart filled ring (literally ) with a big stone…
Mission accomplished, I see it on her hand every day.
Her wish…
Fulfilled .
(Keep your promises !!!)


One more…
This was done for the daughter in law of the lady who’s family bought her the 5 ct. she so richly deserved.
The outcome, generally, is that there is a certain loyalty that comes with family driven work. As one dream is fulfilled, another family member want’s to realize theirs.
This time , a 2.75 ct Cushion cut diamond, with the hearts setting the theme, and the challenge of fitting over 300. (not a typo…)
.8 mm diamonds into a size 3 1/2 ring… my eyes were so tired after the setting. But the effect was similar to carpeting the ring, in miniature.
Again, hand fabricated in platinum.
Self reward is really admirable when integrity is in place, as is the awareness that promises can lose impact over time. This lady shared her dream with her husband, and took it upon herself to see it fulfilled. The last several pieces shown have roots in promises, each coming to the same end. At some point someone chose to take responsibility for the promise being completed.
I’m honored to have been included in their dream.


Is this a mechanical connection between 5 ct setting and band?


Hi Betty,
Yes, on the east west prongs. The head is designed to look like it floats in the center but it’s really welded in (not soldered. Quite sturdy.
hanks, Jim


Guys’ day again…
These are done for a couple of great friends. After an extended stay in Spain, they fell in love with Moorish tile patterns,.
They sent me a photo of this particular design to be used in a 18k rose gold and platinum set with emerald and sapphire center stones (birthstones for each)
These were intended to be a bit rustic, not over finished, so a gentle oxide was laid down and the overall finish brushed with just hints of high polish.
Notice the Spanish thread, more Atocha tomorrow.
Enjoy, Jim


Hi Jim, all your jewelry is stunning, you’re without a doubt a master of the craft.
I have to ask about the construction of your Moorish tile pattern rings if it isn’t a trade secret.
How in the world did you get such precise tiny patterns to fit in the band?
Are the patterns pierced or cast or carved or formed from wire or is it magic?

Thanks, have a good one (from another JIm)


I’ll always defer to Magic…
The pattern was done in cad while the outer bands and bezels were machined in gold.
It took 3 tries to get the fill pattern , not so easy, and a bit costly…
I’m including a photo of the original Moorish tile.
I kind of had to extrapolate a bit & re draw the pattern. Don Ross at AM Ross & Sons (my best bud…) did the wax milling.