Vanilla or chocolate engraving? Seriously, Rashida asked me on the phone if I do "vanilla or chocolate engraving."
I said, "I do both and banana split engraving." (She had called me after finding me on the internet and she sounded fun.)
"OK," she said, "I was messin' with you, but now you're messin' with me." She said with a smile in her voice.
"Guilty as charged. What are you looking for?" I said.
There we got into a conversation about the fact that she wanted to do something different.
"Everyone does letters, but my neice's real name is Irvina. And all the 'I's' look lame. So I don't want an 'I'. She just flat out won't wear it. She goes by Vina, but her folks hate that. So doing a "V" is out of the question." She said.
"What if we do a symbol or animal or something? It worked for Prince." I said.
"Vina does love hummingbirds." She said.
In that moment we found Vina's signet ring decoration.
What Will I Cover in This Signet Ring Engraving Post?
In this post I'll show examples of different lettering types on many different signet rings and hope to inspire you to spend a bit of time and pick a font that you really like. That will make your signet ring or the signet ring gift more special.
A Bit About Engraving - There are Three Types
I drill deeply into the three types on my blog post: Engraved Rings, Five Things You Need to Know
Briefly there are machine engraving, hand engraving and laser engraving. Each one is covered in the above post. I'll label the pictures in this post by what method was used to help you know how that effect was achieved.
The Steps to Choosing How to Engrave Your Signet Ring
- Pick the font or image you love the most (Google fonts)
- See what style of engraving you'll need (Look at these pictures for examples)
- Pick a jeweler that offers your chosen style of engraving
- Take it in to the jeweler and get it done
Tattoos and Your Ring Design
You can be like Rashida and engrave a hummingbird or a favorite symbol on your signet ring.
One way to search for symbols is to do a Google Image search for simple tattoo ideas or wood cuts in the area of your interest.
Keep in mind that too much detail is the enemy of engraving. You want the image to communicate and too much complexity can make it look like a mysterious blob.
If it is simple enough to tattoo or do a wood cut it'll probably be simple enough to show up well on a signet ring. Considering how complex tattoo are is these days I should say only look at simple tattoos as examples of what you want.
Monograms Are Cool
Generally speaking when you have a monogram engraved the last name letter is in the center. The first initial is to the left and the middle initial is to the right. When engraving monograms the choice of font makes a huge difference in how it looks. Fonts have personalities all their own.
Have fun Finding Your Font Personality. Note that scripty fancy fonts tend to give an old vintage look and can be used by men and women.
Examples of Machine Engraving
With machine engraving you need to choose a font that they have the template (pattern) made up for. Because machine engraving has certain fixed font patterns available and is not hand done, it is less expensive than hand engraving.
Machine engraving tends to be less deep and has one even width as opposed to narrower to wider in the same letter that you can get with hand engraving.
Example of Laser Engraving
Laser engraving is highly precise as it is controlled by a computer. A computer operator programs in the font you want and the size and programs where the engraving is to take place.
One of the variables is the dwell time of the laser beams. The deeper you want the engraving, the more dwell time is needed. It is this controlled dwell time that makes laser engraving the only engraving option for titanium and tungsten and super tough metals.
Laser engraving is also really good for engraving complex images. Like fingerprints or kisses.
Vanilla or Chocolate, How Wild do You Want to Go?
Now you know the techniques, time to search for what you really want your engraving to look like.
May your signet ring look perfect for you,
More Posts in the Engraving Series: