Chapter 1. Manufacturing
Our manufacturer is located in Kostroma. It is the capital of the jewellery industry in Russia, and many factories and manufacturers are here. All our products are manufactured according to GOST. By the way, there are very high-demanding jewellery standards in Russia, so we can be safely proud of our product anywhere in the world.
At each stage of manufacturing, specific difficulties may arise, such as errors in prototyping, mold shrinkage, bubbles during casting, a rash detected during processing, or uneven rhodium plating. All these are reasons to send the jewelry to waste, starting the work from the beginning. However, it's essential for us that you receive high-quality jewellery and be sure of what you have purchased.
Chapter 2. Molds
There are several technologies of manufacturing. For example, you can "stretch" a silver bar into a plate or a wire and order a unique stamp to stamp the products. We specifically want to focus on one of the most popular technologies — casting.
We have very few products made entirely by hand; eventually, many steps of the manufacturing process (fixing stones, polishing, tagging, etc.) will be applied to any jewellery piece.
To cast jewellery, jewelers use molds and silicone blocks that help repeat the jewellery's shape.
Chapter 3. Waxing and casting
Now wax is poured into a pre-prepared mold on a particular device under pressure. We do it with stock because some of the products will go to waste. The prepared waxes are soldered onto a single rod — a "Christmas tree", which will then go into casting.
What is casting? The" tree" is placed in a special casting box and sent to the oven. During the baking process, the wax melts, and later an alloy of silver is poured in its place. By the way, what is an alloy of 925-carat? It is 92.5% silver and 7.5% of other metals, that add a little more strength to soft silver. The casting box cools down, and instead of a wax "tree", we get a silver one. After that, the jewelry will be "bitten off" and transferred for further processing — mounting.
Chapter 4. Workpieces, mounting, and post-processing
The semi-products collected after casting are far from the finished product, and there is still much work ahead! The products will be polished and adjusted to the desired size on the mounting, and the jewellery of different parts is going to be put together.
After mounting, the products are sent to the barrel polishing. Barrel polishing represents something like a drum, reminding a washing machine. The process consists of several stages: several types of abrasives are poured into the drum one by one, here we show some wax drops, but there are many options: from tiny metal needles to ceramic balls. At each stage, products with an abrasive are placed in the drum to whirl. Under the repetitive influence of barrel polishing, the products will be cold-harden (compressed) and polished.
Then, products will be stamped to confirm the quality. The manufacturer brands silver products — they put a nameplate, a unique stamp of four letters, and a hallmark.
Chapter 5. Cutting and fixing stones
Apart from synthesized cubic zirconia for the BAGUETTE collection, all the insets in our jewellery are natural. Moreover, we do not buy ready-made stones but cut them to order. We will talk about this process using the example of new CARBON, IVORY, and SERENE signet rings.
The geography of the origin of the stones is surprising. The cutting manufacturers purchase the white cacholong in the Orenburg region, the black “metal” jaspilite in Kursk, and the blue sodalite mined much further: in Brazil. Special equipment helps cut large minerals into neat ovals, which become part of jewellery at the tacking stage.
Fun fact: in these samples, high cutting accuracy is critical, so insets are prepared according to the individual measurements of each (!) ring. A silver product can give a slight shrinkage, and since the stones are cut by hand, they may differ by fractions of a millimeter. The stone may not “sit” in the product, leaving more significant gaps. Therefore, such an individual fit is the only suitable option.
Chapter 6. Polishing, Rhodium and Gilding
It's time to polish the jewellery to a perfect glow and cover it with one of the precious metals: rhodium or gilding. While gilding has more of a decorative function, rhodium performs a protective one: it prevents the product from oxidation.
Then the product is transferred to the quality control department and tagging. The quality control department conducts a thorough check for manufacturing defects, and here they control that the jewellery meets industry quality standards. It is the final but not the only stage of control because each product is checked repeatedly: after the casting process, after polishing, and every worker who worked on all the steps double-checks the product.
Chapter 7. Shipment
Everything is ready. The products are weighed, sorted, packed, and all the necessary documentation is prepared for the jewellery to be sent to SUMEI in St. Petersburg. There we recheck everything: how effortlessly the locks of the earrings are opened, whether the stones are securely fixed, how brightly the rhodium shines, and the sizes of the rings correspond to the grid. After that, the jewellery will be sent to our stores in Moscow and Berlin. This cycle is repeated from 8 to 12 times a year. Now the most pleasant thing is to put the jewellery on display, add the pieces to the website and call those who left their number, looking forward to this jewellery appearing in stock. Now you know what a long and exciting journey each of SUMEI's jewellery takes before becoming yours.