Jewellery Terms & Techniques

BEZEL – A thin strip of silver around a stone that is soldered to the silver base. It can be flat or saw-toothed.

CHANNEL INLAY – A design of shell or stone set with a silver bezel between each stone. The stones are sanded level and polished.

CLUSTER – A group of tear drop or round stones individually set.

CONCHA/CONCHO BELT – A belt made of silver and/or stones strung on leather or joined by silver links.

ETCHED INLAY – Ornamentation where a picture or design is etched into the surface of the stone or inlay.

FETISH – An object, usually of stone or shell, said to bring power and good fortune to the person who possesses it.

HEISHE/HEISHI – Shell, stone or silver that has been cut, drilled and ground into round pieces and strung into a necklace. One strand may consist of several hundred pieces.

INLAY – Stones or shells ground flat on the top and level with the surrounding silver.

NEEDLEPOINT – An oval stone ground to fine points at bothends and set in a silver bezel.

OVERLAY – A style produced by soldering two pieces of silver together: the top piece, a cut-out design element and a bottom piece, which is oxidized and often textured to produce a contrasting background.

PETIT POINT – An oval stone ground to a fine point at one end, rounded on the other and set in a silver bezel.

RAISED INLAY – A style of inlay where the stone is rounded on the top instead of being ground flat.

SANDCAST – An old technique < >where silver is poured into the design which has been carved into a heat resistant stone.

SNAKE EYE – A series of very small, round stones, each of which is set in a bezel.


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