Dating as far back as 50-100 years ago, master jewelers sat behind benches for weeks on end, creating and designing beautiful antique and vintage engagement rings. During this crafting process, these jewelers used a technique known as Milgrain design. Simply defined in French, Milgrain means 1000 grains.

 

The appearance of Milgrain design is a small row of tiny beads along a section of a piece jewelry.  In our case, this would be on a section of an antique ring.

 

You may see Milgrain being used on the outer edges of antique and vintage wedding bands. These Milgrain designs come in different sizes, but it will always complement the old European or old mine cut diamond.

 

 

This fine art of jewelry making was done by master craftsman in the Edwardian, Art Deco and Victorian eras.  These masters would sit at a bench, and create these tiny beads within their rings, necklaces and bracelets.


This design was mandatory in all antique jewelry, and definitely deserves attention.

 

Today, unlike decades before, most of the Milgrain design is computer generated. By no means should we not pay attention today's Milgrain, however it does not hold a candle to the handmade designs from decades before.

 

An important facet of today's milgrain design is jewelry restoration. Vintagediamondring.com may receive a ring for repair, or we will purchase an estate ring, and restore the missing Milgrain design. This design is an art, some would say a lost art.  This lost art can give us the feel for the era the jewelry is from, and can give us a visual impact only antique jewelry can give.