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Using 3D printers for jewellery has many advantages. We use 3D printing for prototyping to make sure the finished product will be exactly what we and our customers want. Customers can try out their 3D printed versions of pieces before they commit to the final design.

Using 3D scanners allows us to take very accurate measurements of existing pieces to enable new items of jewellery to be designed to accompany the existing piece. This is also handy when replacing an element of the design i.e. a bracelet link or missing earring for repair.

Adularescence is an internal “floating” movement of light across a gemstone that varies as light strikes the exterior of the gem.  A great example of this can be found in moonstone.

Alloy is a metal that is made by mixing two or more metals. Compared to pure metals, alloys have better corrosion resistance, lower costs, higher strength and better workability.

  • Gold 9ct = 375/1000 gold
  • Gold 18ct = 750/1000
  • 22ct = 916/100

Gold is combined with varying amounts of other metals such as palladium or copper depending on colour and other characteristics wanted.

  • Platinum 950/1000

Platinum is combined with palladium or ruthenium for brightness, durability and ductility when making the piece.

  • Silver Sterling 925/1000

Sterling Silver is combined with copper or zinc for durability.

Annealing is the process of heating a metal or alloy to a temperature below its melting point in order to make it softer. Heating and cooling restores the malleability and ductility, enabling you to work the metal again.
An Assay is a test of the purity of an alloy. Assay Offices test the purity of precious metals, to protect consumers from buying fake items. If an item conforms with the legal requirements for purity, the Assay Office marks it with the appropriate hallmark.  We primarily use the Birmingham Assay office and it is the only time your piece of jewellery leaves our workshop before heading home with you.
Asscher Cut an octagonal diamond cut
Baguette The baguette cut of diamond is similar in shape to a French baguette in that it is long and rectangular in shape.

Bale or bail The part at the top of a pendant that allows a chain or cord to go through to turn into a necklace.

Band of a ring. The part that goes around your finger.

Bar and ring clasps A fastener for both bracelets and necklaces. It consists of a circular ring with the other part a bar. The bar goes through the ring at an angle and is large enough when straight to hold the jewellery together.  

Base metal These metals are often used in costume jewellery and alloys, and are cheaper than precious metals. To make less expensive jewellery, base metals are sometimes plated with a very thin layer of precious metals such as gold or silver. Examples of base metals are aluminium, brass, copper and nickel. Jewellery composed of base metals cannot be repaired or resized as the content is variable and is likely to become unstable and potentially dangerous if heated for repair.


Belcher Sometimes also known as a “Rolo Chain”, Belcher chains are a type of trace (or link) chain composed of broad round, oval, or D-shaped links of similar size and shape interlocked and soldered together.


Bench A jeweller’s bench is a specialised work table where a jeweller makes and repairs jewellery. Normally, these benches have various drawers that contain the various, necessary tools. Upstairs we have specialised finishing benches and a traditional setting bench.


Bespoke Anything “bespoke” is custom-made or made-to-order. It’s anything that has been specifically designed with the customer in mind and in direct collaboration with that customer. We create jewellery that is as unique as you and we have the knowledge and skills to make your dream jewellery pieces come to life. We have years of experience in crafting bespoke jewellery tailored to individual needs, so whatever you’re looking for we can design something just for you.


Bezel Setting In a bezel setting a gemstone is securely set with metal surrounding the stone, rather than using prongs or claws to hold the gemstone in place. A full bezel refers to when metal completely encircles the gemstone, while in partial bezel settings the metal only encircles a part of the gemstone. A popular choice for engagement rings, this setting is a modern alternative to more traditional settings. 


Block or Peg Bench blocks; also known as pegs, are used to work metal or create texture to make your jewellery pieces even more eye-catching.  They are mounted on to the front of each jewellery bench enabling the jewellers to get up close and access the fine details in each piece.


Box chain the links are smooth and have been made up of square shaped links. The box chain is one of the most used for pendant necklaces. 


Box clasp is as the name implies, a box shaped clasp for necklaces and bracelets. usually referred to as the push in type.

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Bridal set is where you get a matching engagement ring and wedding ring together.

Brilliance A gemstone is measured by its brilliance refractive impact (BRI). Brilliance refers to the amount of light and reflection that comes out of the interior of a stone, or in layman’s terms, how much it shines or sparkles.

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Brushed finish This is when the metal is finished into a less bright colour.  A polishing technique to add texture to metal leaving it with a multidimensional finish.

Burnishing is when a surface of metal is made even shinier by a sliding technique. This gives a slight scuffed/ridged effect to the surface, that when polished reflects light and thus increases the shine.

Butterflies/butterfly stoppers Also known as scroll earring backs. Shaped backs that have a folded back feature around the post hole.

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Cabochon is the method of cutting gemstones with a convex, rounded surface that is polished but unfaceted. Opaque, asteriated, iridescent, opalescent, or chatoyant stones are usually cut en cabochon. The back of a normal cabochon-cut stone is flat, but it may be hollowed to lighten the colour. Garnet, jasper, bloodstone, moonstone, cat’s-eye, and star ruby and sapphire are among the gemstones usually finished in this manner.

Carat A unit of weight measurement for precious stones . It is important not to confuse this with the other karat (American spelling) or carat, which is a measure of the purity of gold. ‘Carat’ is abbreviated to “ct.” One carat is equal to 1/5 of a gram (200 milligrams). Stones are measured to the nearest hundredth of a carat. There are a hundred points in a carat, so that a .10 carat stone can also be described as a 10 point stone. Smaller stones are most often referred to by point designations. 

An average one-carat round diamond usually measures approximately 6.5mm in diameter. This relationship of weight and size, however, is different for each type of cut and differs for other gems. Rubies and sapphires, for example, are both heavier than diamonds, so a one carat ruby or sapphire is smaller in size than a one carat diamond.

Casting The method of shaping metal by melting and then pouring into a hollow mould. We use the process of casting to create the metal portions of jewellery pieces, for everything from rings to earrings to bracelets to pendants of gold, silver, and platinum.  Jewellers with in-house casting workshops are becoming increasingly rare and at Fultons we are one of only two casting houses in the United Kingdom that are accredited to cast Single Mined Origin (SMO) gold. 

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Channel setting This is a form of gemstone setting that slots the stones into a channel to create a continuous strip. It’s most often seen in rings.

Chasing Surface texturing of metal by hammers and punches.

Clarity The clarity of a diamond is determined by the inclusions within the stone or blemishes on the surface. The inclusions occur naturally and are the reason that every diamond is unique. The grading of a diamond’s clarity depends on the size, colour and location of any inclusion or blemish, and is assessed by 10x magnification. We can help you with your choice, taking into account your chosen style and budget.

Claw or Prong Setting A gemstone setting which is used to set faceted stones. These settings have notched claws or prongs that are pushed over slightly to hold the edges of the gemstone in place.

Cluster Setting A type of design where smaller gemstones are set around a larger stone as a focal point. Most often seen on rings.

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Cocktail rings In 1925 heavy elaborate rings of unusual design were given this name because they were suitable to be worn to a cocktail party. A cocktail ring usually has a relatively large focal point which sits on top of or at the centre of the band to make a statement. These rings are often large and may not be suitable for everyday wear as they can get in the way of day-to-day work. But they sure are fun to wear when dressing up!

Collet Setting A method of setting in which a precious stone is held in place by wrapping it in a rounded band of metal.

Colour Most diamonds can appear white to the natural eye but many display hints of colour especially on closer inspection. The closer the diamond is to colourless the rarer and more valuable it will be. However, diamonds outside the normal colour range – fancy coloured diamonds, as they are known in the jewellery trade, are the rarest and command even higher prices according to colour and availability, for example, blues, greens and pinks.

Conflict Free and Ethically Sourced Diamonds What is an ethical diamond? In a nutshell it means sustainable and ethical mining practices, humanitarian efforts, the safe treatment of miners, and more stringent diamond sourcing practices. To ensure that you know the origin of your jewellery crafted in our workshop we have full end to end traceability of the supply process for both our precious stones and precious metals. Ethical practices mean the world to us both here at home and in the places where our materials are sourced.

Doing the right thing right is a priority at Fulton’s. It is important for us to know where the materials in our products come from. That is why we only use ethically sourced ore in all the jewellery we make.

Computer Aided Design CAD allows us to work more quickly and also helps the creative process. 

A great design is usually the result of considerable experimentation. CAD makes trial and error easy (you can’t quickly “undo” something you don’t like in a watercolour). We can follow our imagination without having to recreate the design each time we are inspired and this allows us to take a truly collaborative approach when working on bespoke requests with our customers.

CAD also lets us create photorealistic images of jewellery that have shadows and reflections. Allowing the client to get a good sense of what a finished piece will look like before it is made.

Copper A base metal which is vibrant orange in colour and is very soft. It tarnishes very easily and can stain the skin green or black in its pure form, so is not often used in jewellery on its own. However, it is often alloyed with pure silver or gold: for instance, sterling silver is an alloy of 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% copper, which forms a much stronger metal than either pure copper or silver (the copper content in sterling silver is not high enough to stain skin).

Crimp Bead A beading component most often used to secure the knotted ends of a necklace. Small crimp beads are usually flattened or tightened in place with pliers.

Cubic Zirconia sometimes called CZ, is a common lab-made gemstone. It is the crystal form of zirconium dioxide. Cubic zirconia is classified as a diamond simulant – a stone that looks similar to natural diamonds, but is made of different material. CZ does have a couple of drawbacks such as lack of durability-with daily use, and losing its shine and sparkle within a few years.We prefer to use conflict free, GIA certified diamonds in our work to ensure enduring quality and sparkle.

Cultured Pearls Pearls which are created under controlled conditions with the help of farmers. Cultured pearls can be created using either freshwater river molluscs or traditional saltwater pearl oysters.

Curb The most common pattern for gold chain bracelets.

Cushion The cushion cut diamond (once referred to as old mine cut) combines a square cut with rounded corners, much like a pillow – hence the name. This classic cut has been around for almost 200 years, and for the first century of its existence was the most popular diamond shape (similar to round cut today).

Cut The cut of a diamond, its proportions and facets determines the light dispersion and has the greatest influence on overall appearance and sparkle. As this is the only characteristic not solely influenced by nature, the cut can be exposed to human error. At Fultons we understand this, therefore, each diamond is carefully hand selected so that you can be assured your jewellery will be set with only the finest gemstones.


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Dangle Earrings are similar to drop earrings, but hang below the earlobe and swing back and forth and/or side to side. They may be quite short or hang all the way down to graze your shoulders. Sometimes the terms ‘dangle earrings’ and ‘drop earrings’ are used interchangeably.

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Drop Earrings similar to dangle earrings, but have the main feature dropping slightly below the earlobe. They may or may not swing depending on the design, unlike dangle earrings which always swing. Sometimes the terms ‘drop earrings’ and ‘dangle earrings’ are used interchangeably.

Earring back, nut The small component that attaches to the back of a post earring to hold it in place on your ear. Earring nuts are a style of earring back or clutch that “screw” onto the earring post.

Earwire An earring component made from wire which is used with pierced ears. A common style is the typical shepherd’s hook with the focal point of the design hanging from the front of the ear wire. These are also referred to as ear hooks and are most often seen in dangle or drop earrings.

Electroplate is a process in which one metal is coated with another metal using electricity. In jewellery, inexpensive metals are frequently electroplated with more expensive metals, like gold (gold plating), copper (electrocoppering), rhodium (rhodanizing), chromium (chromium plating), or silver (silver plating).

Elements Some metals are elements, which means that they are in their purest form. Pure gold is an element, but it is too soft to wear in such a way so is often alloyed with other metals, which is why it is available to buy in different ‘carats’

Emerald Cut This relatively minimalist gemstone cut is square or rectangular and is generally used for large and transparent gemstones.

Engraving In relation to jewellery, this is the process of cutting an often highly detailed design or text in the surface of metal using specialised tools known as gravers. It may also be done using power tools with tiny burs, but this has much poorer results. Proper engraving requires a very high degree of skill and is often done by a Master Engraver who specialises in this type of work.

Enhanced stones are stones that have been treated to improve their colour, clarity, finish, strength, or other characteristics. Some common enhancements are heat-treatment, irradiation, coating the surface, filling cracks, oiling, surface diffusion (coating the surface then applying heat), bleaching, dyeing, etc.

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Eternity Ring An eternity ring is a narrow ring with gemstones set all around it.

Ethical/Environmental jewellery Many customers are increasingly concerned about the environmental and social impacts of the jewellery industry. For us, it’s about sourcing and crafting jewellery in a way that minimises harm to people, the environment, and communities.

It is crucially important to source diamonds and gemstones from conflict-free regions. The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme aims to prevent the trade in conflict diamonds. Fair Trade and Single Mined Origin metals like gold and silver are sourced through fair trade practices, ensuring fair wages and safe working conditions for miners.

Recycling old jewellery or using reclaimed metals and gemstones can reduce the environmental footprint of jewellery production. Low-Impact manufacturing advancements in eco-friendly jewellery manufacturing techniques, such as 3D printing and responsible casting methods help to ensure the reduction of waste and cost to the environment.

We are constantly innovating using eco-friendly materials to design, cast and create our fine jewellery with a minimised environmental impact.


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