Posted on Leave a comment

Behind the Scenes – Casting (Men’s) Rings

A peak into our handmade jewelry creation.

In our studio...

We are two artists creating handmade jewelry from scratch. As much of what is available to purchase online is mass produced nowadays, we often receive questions about our process and the techniques we use in creating our jewelry line. To answer one of the questions we receive the most on our men’s jewelry line, ‘how are your products made’ we’re sharing this little video. It is not meant to be a tutorial, we just want to share our behind the scenes with you and answer the question – we make each and every item by hand, using traditional silversmithing techniques adapted to our modern design.

This is just one of the techniques we use, mostly for our rings. It is a casting process using delft clay. We first sculpt the ring in wax, visible in the first few seconds. For this particular design, we make a wax model for each size separately as the proportions change with the ring size. Delft clay allows us to create two part moulds of the waxes and materialize them in silver. It takes skill and patience, but the final result is well worth it!

To check out some of the men’s rings created in this manner, click on the images below.

Thanks for your time and please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions!

Mara and Michel

Get social:

follow us on IG: www.instagram.com/projekt.m.jewelry

join our mailing list for occasional updated on new items and promotions. We do not spam 😊

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.

our IG feed:

Posted on Leave a comment

3 Reasons You Should Buy Handmade Sterling Silver Jewelry

With an abundance of jewelry available in chain stores, gift shops and even your favorite pharmacy, it is easy to just pick up a $10 charm necklace. But have you ever wondered where it was made, was it made ethically and sustainably and finally, what is the content of the metal used? With more and more reports coming in about high content of lead and/or cadmium in cheap mall jewelry on the shelves in North America, it is time to rethink the consumerism and opt for jewelry that will last a lifetime and beyond.

If the above was not enough to convince you, here are three more reasons to buy handmade sterling:

  1. Nickel – do you have allergies to silver? Nickel is the likely culprit. We ingest small amounts of nickel every day as it is used for plating faucets, in production of our pots and pans etc. About 10-20% of population develops an allergic reaction. The allergy can develop at any age and once developed, person’s immune system will continue to be sensitive to nickel for the rest of their life. There is no cure for a nickel allergy, so the best way to avoid symptoms is to avoid wearing jewelry that contains nickel. But how do you know if there is nickel used in the jewelry you’re buying? Here are some examples to avoid:

• silver plated and silver filled jewelry contains a layer of silver bonded to a base metal, which can be brass, copper or nickel. As the plating wears off, the nickel in the substrate will start irritating your skin.

  • mass produced silver jewelry, usually manufactured outside of North America and European Union. Sterling silver is a silver alloy containing 92.5% of pure silver and 7.5% of other metals. In North American and EU, the added 7.5% is copper as it is hypoallergenic. EU even has a directive prohibiting sales of sterling silver containing nickel. However, there is no such directive in the rest of the world, so nickel is often added to silver alloys as a cheaper alternative to copper. 
  • Unknown provenance of jewelry and components: If not stated, ask your jewelry seller of the provenance of the pieces they sell and their nickel content. Handmade artists know where their silver came from and can answer your questions. 

2.   Sustainability – handmade jewelry is usually made by a single person or a small team that controls every aspect of their production process, from sourcing the best quality materials to adhering to safety standards. Usually made in home studios, handmade artists naturally gravitate towards health conscious practices and environmentally friendly alternatives to harsh chemicals used in mass produced jewelry. As their production grows, handmade jewellers start developing techniques for reclaiming their silver scraps, making their practice sustainable and less wasteful. 

3.   Modern day Maecenas – be arts patron! When you buy handmade jewelry, not only are you investing in a unique, sustainable piece, you are supporting the artist behind the label. 

So, go ahead, find your perfect piece and feel good about your purchase!

Visit: www.projekt-m.co to find your next handmade sterling silver treasure!

Join hundreds of people on our email list to stay in touch, hear about our latest bling and other jewelry related topics. We do not spam and do not sell your details.

Processing…
Success! You're on the list.
Posted on Leave a comment

Guide to Buying Gifts for Men

Let’s be honest, finding gifts for men – ones they’ll really love and appreciate – can be a challenge, so I have decided to share our top 5 choices and men they are most likely to strike a chord with.

Pay attention to:

  • His style as well as his daily routine/job: does he work a lot with his hands (operating machinery or fixing things)? Could a ring get caught on something while he’s working? Then maybe a better choice would be a neck chain or a cuff bracelet. Does he work in the corporate world and If so, could he use a pair of cufflinks or a lanyard for his glasses? Is he a teacher? Would he enjoy a personalized quote on his gift?
  • Does he wear a lot of jewelry already? What would complement or enhance his collection?

PERSONALIZED BRACELETS / CUFFS:

Made just for men, they are substantial and masculine. Hand forged in sterling silver, we offer them in several finishes, including polished, oxidized and gold gilded, so you are sure to find one that he’ll love. Add his favorite quote, or yours, words of encouragement or a significant date and you have a sure winner! Suitable for all men in your life, our past customers equally bought these for significant others, fathers and friends of all age groups.

HUGGIE EARRINGS FOR MEN:

Super popular timeless style, these are a great gift because you don’t even have to worry about the size! They come in multiple finishes, so there sure is a style that will fit his! Perfect as you can buy only one or a set of three, so it is totally customizable!

PENDANTS and LANYARDS:

We have created these with modern men in mind. Minimalist and multipurpose, some can be personalized and all can double as glass lanyard, for an added layer of function! Perfect for all ages and styles, from young professional to a retired avid reader!

RINGS:

Great for an approaching anniversary or just because, chunky, battered, smooth or with gold, we have them all.

Did you know that wood is a traditional 5th anniversary gift? Or that linen 4th? We have you covered! Many more in store, so go ahead, explore them all!

Classic ROPE BRACELET:

Does he like boats or nautical themes? Or does he wear stacks of mixed bracelets? If either is yes, than this one will be a winner!

NECK CHAINS:

To go alone or with his favorite pendant, or even layer, we offer a few for your consideration:

CUFF LINKS:

Personalized with initials, these are perfect for those who like high style and sense of status, but also make a great wedding gift for fathers, fathers in law, brothers, best man, groom etc.

KEY RING:

Everybody needs one! Why not give an elegant, high quality sterling one that you can also personalize to your heart’s content?

Posted on Leave a comment

What is Stabilized Wood

Chose your wood from these

Often, we get questions on what exactly stabilized wood is and how rings made using stabilized wood compare to those made out of Wood veneer wrapped around a silver core. So, here are some facts for you.

Stabilized wood is wood treated with resins to produce wood that is water resistant, will not crack or warp under normal wear. The process of stabilizing wood involves several steps:

  1. Wood needs to be dried out completely. Any moisture left will compromise the final product
  2. the wood is then placed into a vacuum chamber submerged in resin. The vacuum helps remove any air bubbles from the wood, which are then replaced by resin, once the vacuum is turned off.
  3. Coloring stabilized wood is done by mixing pigments into the resin. They penetrate deep into the wood and this is where the beautiful colors, other than natural wood colors, come from.
  4. After the wood has been completely soaked in resin – a simple float test will confirm that there are no more air bubbles left – the wood is heat treated to cure the resin. Et voilà!

The beauty of stabilized wood, regardless of whether it has been “dyed” or not, is that no two pieces are ever the same. The rings we create are all hand turned and the silver cores are handmade by us in our studio.

The last question: how does stabilized wood ring compare to the cheaper veneer rings? Short answer: there’s no comparison as stabilized wood is superior in all aspects from durability to the “looks”.

Let me know if you would like me to elaborate on the differences between the two some more – I’d be happy to oblige.

Posted on Leave a comment

How it’s made… racer rings

Recently, we’ve moved half way across the planet (you can read about that in previous blog posts) with nothing more than a few suitcases… in other words, not enough space to pack any of the tools we usually use in jewelry making. So, we decided to buy some tools we’ve always wanted to have but could never really justify the expense… enters the mini lathe!

This wonderful piece of equipment enables us to precisely carve many of our racer rings, the gorgeous 2mm thick beauties you can see in our men’s section here.

The beauty of it is that Michel still carves each one by hand, as the cutting tool is hand operated, but the sizing of the rings is accurate to a fraction of a mm!

The other awesome thing is just watching the process, so we are sharing it with you! 😁

Once the waxes are carved, they have to be polished and cast in silver using lost wax technique. Each ring is made to order – we do not use moulds of any sort – so each ring is made from start to finish for a specific person.

Once cast, the sprues, used to inject silver into the mould need to be filed off and the whole ring usually ends up again on the lathe for the final filing and polishing. The whole process takes more than 8 hours to complete!

Posted on Leave a comment

A Long Way Back Home…

…or where the inspiration comes from…

We’ve been living in Europe over the past 4 years, but it was time to “sail” back to Canada… we’ve taken the scenic route, with a stop in Iceland. A short digression here just to add that Iceland was on my bucket list ever since I took a random flight from Amsterdam to Boston back in 2003. I took the flight just because it was the cheapest option I could find – I was a student at the time – but boy, was I in for a surprise! As we approached the airport, I simply couldn’t believe the scenery, the moonlike paysage, the utter uniqueness of the place. Unfortunately, I had a really short layover so I was unable to go out and explore, but I knew I wanted to go back ever since. Back in the day, Iceland was not all the craze it is now, so I was a pioneer, lol.

Fast forward 16 years… We arrived in late November, when the days are super short and the Sun seems to graze the horizon for a mere few hours a day. The vegetation is all but nonexistent and the bare, black earth is crackled and adorned with frost glittering in the Sun. Some of the crevices are so narrow and deep, with big, black egg-shaped pebbles nesting inside. One cannot help but imagine that they were dragon eggs, laid there a millennia ago.

This world, so different than anything I have seen in my life, lends itself beautifully to explorations in silver… the imagery has occupied my mind and imagination even since and so, I have been drawing and making one of a kind pieces inspired by .

Huge Bypass Ring
Posted on Leave a comment

Fun at Work

It is said that artists always have fun working or was it that when you love your work it seems more like having fun? I probably got both sayings completely wrong, but hey, both apply in our case!

Nowadays, everyone is into satisfying videos, even kids refer to them as such! So, this post is about those satisfying moments we get to enjoy every day.

Can you guess what this is?