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Jewellery Engraving – Ways to Personalise your Bespoke Jewellery

Engraving your jewellery is a beautiful way to personalise and add intricate details to your cherished, bespoke pieces. Whether you choose to engrave significant dates, names, places, or patterns, these unique discrete touches connect the item of jewellery to you and your loved ones. 

By far the most common feature that I'm asked to engrave is either a wedding date, or the name of a couple. I'll often ad it to the inside of wedding rings and the engraving can take all sorts of different forms; from simple initials to full, long form dates and names.

I love repairing or sizing old jewellery with historic wedding dates hidden inside - it feels like a window back in time.

What is Engraving in Jewellery?

Engraving jewellery is the process of carving into precious metal to create physical marks in the form of writing or a design. The impressions change the way the light hits the metal drastically, meaning any engraving is easily visible and legible.


Until recently most engraving was done by hand, using small tools called gravers. As technology has improved laser engraving jewellery has become an option. Laser engraving allows for more accurate carving and can be used to transfer images and even fingerprints onto metal.

Hand Engraving Jewellery

Hand engraving jewellery today looks little different from how it would have looked thousands of years ago. Since precious metal began to be worn and embellished, have humans been personalising metals by carving and chiselling into them. It blows my mind to think about the intricate engraving of swords, shields, and armour that was done by candlelight hundreds of years ago.

This beautiful example of an engraved ring was made in the 17th century by and unknown maker:

17th Century Posie Ring engraved with externally animals & plants and internally with 'Loyalty

Hand engraving, like the name suggests, is done by hand – with the help of tiny chisel like tools called ‘gravers’. It's a time consuming and a highly skilled craft. Hand engraving is my preferred way of engraving most of my jewellery. Don’t be fooled, it is still incredibly neat and professional looking but also has the lovely quality of the human touch which I believe is so special.

Laser Engraving Jewellery

Laser engraving jewellery is a technique used for cutting a very graphic image, which needs complete precision. There are different laser engraving methods, but the most common is laser evaporation, in which the laser creates a very high heat which results in the metal vaporising at the contact point. Science hey!

Can Any Jewellery be Engraved?

All precious metal is suitable for engraving however that engraving will last longer on harder wearing metals like high carat golds and platinum. Internal engraving, say inside rings, is the most durable kind, as it sits close to your skin and faces less contact with abrasion and chemicals.

External engraving does, eventually, fade off after years of daily wear. But do not fear – I have bought plenty of faded engraved rings back to life in my workshop! Your jewellery can be melted and engraved as new, and between you, me, and the expert engravers – we’ll make sure your engraved jewellery is looking as lovely as it did the first time around.

Collaboration with Artisan Engravers

I’m a big believer that you can’t be a master of all trades, so I stick to making bespoke jewellery and work with expert engravers when needed. All the hand engraving work I do is a direct collaboration with two specialist engravers, who I trust completely.

For the more complicated or graphic engravings I use a laser engraving company to produce engravings that match an artwork myself and the client have designed.

Ways to Personalise Your Jewellery Using Engraving Techniques

Wondering how to engrave your jewellery? The world is your oyster with engraving. You can have significant dates, names, poetry, symbols, and more, carved into your jewellery to give it even more meaning.

Internal engraving is a lovely choice for those discrete sentiments you like to keep close to your heart, while external engraving provides gorgeous details that help a piece come alive: