What is it possible for us to create for a client? Almost anything, really. Very occasionally, Dot are forced to turn down a commission because it would be a direct copy of another jeweller’s design, or it would be impractical to make (or wear), or would simply look terrible. On the whole, however, most design requests can be developed and will result in a very beautiful and personal piece of jewellery.
We’re always full of ideas, and it’s a straightforward process for us to come up with designs on your behalf based on your likes and dislikes, or on pieces which you already own. We can also tailor a design from our archive of over 1500 designs to suit you. Dot specialise in creating jewellery that is individual to each client, and there are a few simple ways in which a design can be modified to achieve a personal look.
Everyone is different, and what looks good on one person may not suit another. For example, the overall width of a ring can make a big difference to its appearance and impact. So can its height, profile, metal/gem mix, finish etc. We’ll listen to your preferences and combine them with our inspiration and know-how, to produce jewellery that both fits you comfortably and perfectly suits your particular style.
How the design process works.
Step one: Everything needs a starting point. For a piece of jewellery by Dot, this is an initial face-to-face chat which gives us a chance to discuss particular designs you like, features or characteristics you prefer (such as hard, sharp forms or soft, flowing lines). We’ll also give you an idea of the range of metal types and colours available, and talk over the varieties and colours of gems you might like, as well as the cuts of stones you might prefer. There are more options than you might think, and an unusual cut helps to create a distinctive piece! We’ll also have to broach the subject of your preferred price range at this stage, since knowing the available budget will help us to determine the overall parameters of the design. We will charge a non-refundable £300 retainer before beginning any design work.
Step two: At this stage, you do absolutely nothing, while we do the hard work and develop the initial designs for your approval. A commissioned design needs time invested into it in order to provide you with a good selection of options. However, we try our best to take no longer than three weeks over this step.
Step three: Time for you to see how we’ve done. You’ll be presented with a selection of computer-rendered designs that will look just like a photo of the finished piece of jewellery. We’ll always present three completely different concepts for each piece. If you’ve not yet settled on your preferred stone type or colour, we can have a selection of gems available for your consideration at this stage.
Step four: This is where you make your decision. Be fussy – we like it. At this stage the designs consist of nothing more solid than a collection of lovingly positioned pixels – we can easily change anything you may have questions about, at no extra cost to you. We like you to take your time over this stage. Changing a design at a later point in the process isn’t impossible, but does throw up problems and may result in additional costs. We’re very proud of the quality of our customer service, and fight to maintain it – and the most effective way to do this is to ensure that the client is happy before the design is commissioned!
Step five: When you’re satisfied with everything we’re going to do, you commission us to start work. At this stage we require a 40% deposit based on the overall cost of the item. Since all the brainy stuff has already been done, and the whole production process worked out in the design stage, it will normally take four to five weeks to make the item up from scratch.
Step six: It’s all yours (although sadly, we do have to ask you to pay for it)!. However, we don’t leave it there – you’re now one of our customers, so if you require the item altered in size, no problem; and it’s free, as is polishing to refinish the item as many times as you like*. (N.B. unfortunately, a charge must be made for resizing full Eternity rings, as this is effectively a re-make).
(*please note that refinishing is an abrasive process, and we’d advise you to take up this offer no more than once a year. Please you let us know that you’re on your way – we love to help, but can get very busy and may not be able to offer a same-day service if you want to look your best for a special occasion unless we have some warning).