What is the difference between Hand Stamped and Engraved Jewelry?
We get this question many times a day, so I thought I’d give you the low down. Here at The Modern Bazaar, we decided to offer both hand stamping and engraving because….well, there are 2 types of people in the world – those that like hand stamping…and then those that like engraving.
Let’s get to it, shall we?
Hand stamping and engraving are both techniques used to personalize jewelry. One is done by hand (obviously) and one is done by machine (although engraving was originally done by hand until technology advanced.)
Most engraved jewelry today is done by machine for a variety of reasons. For one thing, machines eliminate human error. There are a few different types of engraving machines on the market today - some engrave by laser and some by a diamond tip. A neat finish on both front and back of the surface, engravings have a ‘perfect’ look with evenly spaced and consistent indentation of letters.
Engraving software greatly increases personalization options. Fonts are limitless making monograms a breeze. Now you can even have an image or photo engraved on jewelry.
Here are some examples of the possibilities you can achieve with an engraving machine:
Hand Stamped Jewelry
Hand Stamping is performed by hand using steel stamps and a hammer (as pictured above) – one stamp at a time. The Stamper lines up the stamp by eye, holds it in place with one hand, and with the other hand, hits the end of the stamp with a hammer to impress the letter into the metal. Hand stamped jewelry will have variations in character depth and spacing. It might even be crooked. Sometimes, marking or indentation can be visible on the back of the piece created by the movement of the metal.
The charm of hand stamped jewelry is the rustic imperfection. At The Modern Bazaar, we consider Hand Stamping an art form and each Stamper has their own unique “handwriting” visible on each handcrafted piece.
Side story: You might have noticed that my steel stamp plate is embedded in a tree stump. After a year or so of hammering away, my family had enough of the loud noise! So, what did Dan (my husband) do???? He went out and cut down a tree (not to worry, it was already dying), dragged it home and carved out a space for my stamping plate to rest. You wouldn't believe how much quieter it is! Now, I can stamp late into the night without disturbing anyone and all is good - and quiet.
Below you will find photos of our hand stamped jewelry.
Now that you know the difference, which one do you prefer?
Can you tell which were stamped and which were engraved?