Professional Jeweler Archive: Invisible Setting

April 2000

Diamonds/New Products

Invisible Setting

Labor-intensive craft creates the illusion of a vanished setting

Invisible setting, invented in France over 200 years ago, allowed new directions in jewelry design because it holds the diamonds aloft with no metal visible between them. While the diamonds seem to float above the jewelry, the metal structure beneath holds them securely.

Though invented two centuries ago and patented by Van Cleef & Arpels in 1933, it wasn’t until about 1990 that advanced technology made invisibly set jewelry a more common jewelry category. “This setting takes a great deal of skill because grooves have to be cut into each diamond’s girdle, and the grooves have to match perfectly,” says Tom Twichell, vice president of marketing for the Stuckey Co., Houston, TX. Once the grooves are cut, the diamonds are slid onto metal rails to hold them in place. The main objective is to achieve a continuous flow, a mirror of diamonds.

Princess, emerald, trillion and baguette cuts work best for invisible setting because the straight edges can be placed very close to each other. Curved cuts such as rounds, marquises and ovals can be used also, but they leave tiny spaces where the curves don’t meet.

Invisible setting allows jewelers to create a large diamond surface without expensive large diamonds, says David Savage, vice president of marketing for D’ckar Business Corp., New York City. D’ckar COO Russell Coyne adds, “It opens up a lot of opportunity for design without becoming cost-prohibitive.”

Invisible setting heightens the brightness of diamonds. Display this jewelry on white Leatherette to enhance the brightness even more. Or to try something different, visit your local tile store for shiny tiles of varied colors and sizes.

– by Lorraine M. Suermann

18k white gold earrings and pendant feature diamond pavé and four invisibly set princess-cut diamonds. Suggested retail, $1,500-$3,000.

Elite Designs Inc., Miami, FL; (800) 757-1008 or (305) 373-1934, fax (305) 358-0805.

18k gold link bracelet is set with 19.72 carats of princess-cut and round diamonds. Suggested retail, $81,000.

LeVian Corp., New York City; (212) 575-0318, fax (212) 944-7734.

18k white gold is invisibly set with 3.46 carats of princess-cut diamonds accented with 0.25 carat of round diamonds. Suggested retail, $11,180.

Diamond Mine Jewels, Los Angeles, CA; (213) 623-7382, fax (213) 623-7694.

18k gold bangle has 2.85 carats of invisibly set princess-cut diamonds. Suggested retail, $10,500.

Epsilon, New York City; (212) 921-3310, fax (212) 921-2868.

18k gold earrings are invisibly set with princess-cut diamonds. Also available in 14k, white gold or platinum.

Variety Gem Co. Inc., New York City; (212) 921-1820, fax (212) 921-1834.

Crafted in platinum, these anniversary bands feature two or three rows of princess-cut diamonds. Also available in yellow or white gold.

D’ckar Business Corp., New York City; (888) 746-8672 or (212) 819-1177, fax (212) 819-1717,

14k gold engagement ring is set with 1.0 carat of princess-cut diamonds. Instead of the traditional single center diamond, this ring features four princess-cut diamonds.

The Stuckey Co., Houston, TX; (800) DIAMOND, fax (713) 464-0345,

18k white gold engagement semimount features three rows of invisibly set diamonds.

House of Baguettes, New York City; (800) 603-1550 or (212) 840-0042, fax (212) 840-0228.

Three distinct styles of pendants feature invisibly set diamonds.

Nirvana Inc., Tulsa, OK; (800) 331-6031 or (918) 664-8471, fax (918) 664-6277.

Platinum bracelet has seven rows of princess-cut diamonds.

Nova, Van Nuys, CA; (818) 989-2828, fax (818) 785-3514.

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications