01 | Stone Sourcing
Oscar Heyman jewelry showcases only the very best colored gemstones. Since the late 1940s, Oscar Heyman has traveled abroad to source stones in the major trading centers of the world. These journeys allow us access to the widest range of gem- quality stones, from which we make our carefully edited selections.
02 | Design
The guiding principle of our designs is the concept to showcase the beauty of the world’s finest natural gemstones. Each new design begins at the hands of our design team, who work in gouache on vellum paper, as we have done for decades. There are over 180,000 designs in the Oscar Heyman archives today.
03 | Metal Work
The collection is produced using platinum and 18kt gold alloyed in our workshop. This is the first step in transforming the raw materials into treasured heirloom-quality jewelry. Settings are either die struck or made by hand.
04 | Tool & Die Shop
Oscar Heyman maintains one of the oldest tool and die shops in New York City. Die striking is a process that uses a series of manually operated commands to manipulate a metal plate into a setting that can hold a stone.
05 | Setting
It is the setter’s responsibility to securely fasten gemstones in place while minimizing the appearance of metal so that the stone’s beauty may be foremost. Gemstones are set with the utmost care by jewelers with decades of experience. A wrong move could be a million-dollar mistake.
06 | Engraving
Engraving applies a detailed finish to metal work. It is a forgotten art, which remains today in only the highest level of jewelry manufacturing. The final engraving is when each piece is stamped by hand with the Oscar Heyman seal and with the unique serial number.
07 | Polishing
During the transformation to a finished piece of jewelry, items may visit the polishing department a dozen times. Polishing begins before the setting is assembled and before any gemstones are set, with the purpose of bringing luster to the metal. Thrumming is a type of polishing which uses thread to reach every possible surface area of metal. The distinction of truly fine jewelry is in the attention paid to parts which may remain invisible after stones are set.
The Art of Jewelry Making
Oscar Heyman applies an old-world approach to the transformation of a two-dimensional gouache design into a finished piece of jewelry. From stone selection to the final polish, every detail is completed with the greatest attention and care.