Visible Value

May 1998


Visible Value

Nili improves on invisibly set jewelry

Nili Jewelry Corp. has patented a new process to make invisibly set diamond jewelry using the lost-wax method, a less-expensive and less-time-consuming process than the traditional method.

Invisible setting, invented more than 100 years ago, until recently was so challenging that only the masters such as Cartier attempted it. Even with recent technical advances, the effect of stern, square diamonds in obedient rows without prongs or bezels was achieved only with great time and expense. The products were limited to upscale jewelers who could sell the setting as a rare and high-priced look.

The new process is a departure from the traditional method, in which diamonds with slits below the girdle are placed into a frame with ridges that hold them in place. Instead, Nili places the diamonds and a strip of metal inside a rubber mold and makes a wax model around them. The wax is then used to create the ring around the diamonds, with the strip of metal holding them securely in place.

The new process helps to solve several problems related to invisible setting:

  • Expense. Conventional invisible setting is costly. Manufacturers can use only calibrated stones and, therefore, must buy better and sort more. They must hire only very experienced setters and can use only larger, heavier stones. The conventional method also takes longer, meaning only one or two rings can be finished each day. With the new process, Nili can mass-produce rings and hire less-experienced setters. The company also uses smaller stones to offer a bigger look with less weight.
  • Sizing. One of the most beneficial improvements is that retailers now can size invisibly set rings safely. "If jewelers try to size normal invisible set rings themselves, the stones pop out," says Manny Haimoff, president of Nili. Lost-wax permanently sets the stones in place in the metal on one side, with a metal bar running between the rows to support the other sides.
  • Design. Invisibly set jewelry usually incorporates only straight rows of diamonds because of the difficulty of setting the stones and keeping them in place. Nili hires diamond cutters to work with setters to cut corners in the diamonds and create curves in jewelry. It has created a copyright line of invisibly set diamond jewelry in gold.

Nili Jewelry Corp., New York, NY; (800) 238-0005, fax (212) 944-9517.

by Stacey King

Normal invisibly set diamond jewelry features straight rows of large diamonds because of time and security limitations. Nili's new process uses smaller stones for a bigger look and less weight.
Nili hires diamond cutters to work with its stone setters to create curves in its invisibly set jewelry.

Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.


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