What’s the difference between engraving, etching and inscribing? It depends on who you ask.
Engraved wedding rings are a signature statement of your personal bond of marriage. Although you might not be picturing the same kind of engraving as your partner or even your jeweler. Many couples get confused about the exact definitions of engraving, inscribing and etching, and how each technique is added to wedding rings.
To clarify, engraving simply refers to carving permanent grooves into a surface. It’s a broad term that encompasses many types of detailed design.
An inscription is a set of numbers or words that are engraved into jewelry, like a wedding date or personal message. So, an inscription is a type of engraving and it’s not the only one.
Etching creates another type of engraved details, beyond words or numbers. A complex, intertwined floral design can be etched, for example.
Diamond engraving is also an option, where the diamond itself is engraved with a message or pattern, rather than or in addition to the metal.
How is Ring Engraving Done?
All engraving is done through one of three main techniques. Which you choose depends on your jeweler, the type of engraving you prefer and the amount of details or personalization you desire in the design.
Hand engraving is the timeless technique of applying a design by hand. It’s been around for thousands of years and can be seen in virtually every culture where people wear metal jewelry. Couples often choose hand engraving because of its unique beauty, freedom of expression and ability to create custom fonts and designs beyond any other method.
Machine engraving holds your ring still as a machine carves into its surface. Every twist and turn of the engraving are perfect and precise, lending a sophisticated finish. While this type of engraving offers a huge amount of flexibility in design, there’s still a finite number of templates used by the machine – so it might not be ideal if you’re looking for something unusual or truly unique.
Laser engraving uses lasers to create designs, allowing delicate detail work beyond what can be done by hand or machine. A laser engraver can also be set to handle a much wider range of metals than other methods, so you can engrave titanium, tungsten, stainless steel and more. What’s more? Diamond engraving can only be done with lasers.
Today’s Engraved Design
From wedding bands and gifts to everyday jewelry, new designs are bringing fresh interest to engraving:
- Fingerprints can be recreated with laser engraving. Each spouse can have the other’s fingerprint engraved on the inside of their wedding ring, creating a duo of specially-crafted imprints.
- Textural designs can be taken to a whole new level with engraving. In fact, some textured designs are so carefully crafted, working with voids, shapes and custom metalwork, the overall effect is beautifully hand-forged and unique.
- The tougher metals of men’s jewelry – like titanium – can be engraved with intricate designs that reflect personal interests: chemistry symbols, math equations, sports victories, personal mottos and even portraits.
- Organic and natural designs are very popular right now, and engraving can be used to create all kinds of scrollwork, vines, flowers, symbols, and other nature-inspired looks.
- Engrave a kiss from your beloved, sized-down and preserved forever on the surface of a ring or other jewelry.
Mind Your Ps and Qs
Engraving adds a special personalization to any one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry that you’ll treasure for a lifetime. No matter which type of engraving you choose, keep these practicalities in mind when you talk to your jeweler about its design:
- Proofread with Abandon. Be certain all names and words are spelled correctly, because engraving is forever.
- Double-check Dates. Get a second set of eyes on these, if needed. Wouldn’t it be embarrassing to get the date of an anniversary or birthday wrong?
- Invest in What It Takes. Machine engraving is usually a bit less expensive than laser or hand engraving. Handcrafting takes time and skill, and laser machines are expensive equipment. Still, go ahead and invest in the option that creates the look you desire.
Indy Facets – Everyone’s Private Jeweler
Indy Facets seamlessly blends the expertise and full service of a traditional jewelry store with the value and convenience of a personal jeweler experience. We give you the face-to-face interaction with an expert that you deserve, in a private setting where you can relax and feel comfortable. Owner/Designer Shaun Goodyear and his team have earned an excellent reputation as everyone’s private jeweler for engagement rings, custom design, investment grade diamonds, luxury Swiss timepieces, estate jewelry, jewelry repair and the highest level of customer service, available to you from an onsite, state-of-the-art Custom Design Studio and Gemological Laboratory by private appointment only. You are guaranteed a unique, fun and exciting experience without the hype, pressure, judgment or uncertainty associated with other jewelry shopping options. We schedule appointments at your convenience and are usually available evenings and weekends, too. Call 317-810-1665 for your private appointment or schedule online, IndyFacets.com/schedule/.