Over 1000 years ago, Japanese Swordsmiths discovered a method of forming beautiful sword blades by folding colored steels into complicated wood grain patterns. George Sawyer's Mokume Gane signature patterned metalwork in his engagement rings and wedding bands was inspired by this ancient art.
Over 1000 years ago, Japanese swordsmiths discovered a method of forming beautiful sword blades by folding colored steels into complicated wood grain patterns. George Sawyer's signature Mokume Gane patterned metalwork was inspired by this ancient art. To generate the wood grain pattern, the desired combination of metals is laminated into a stack and forged with a hammer into a series of spirals and foldbacks. The forged metal is then worked into a uniform rectangular billet so that it can be cut into slices. The billet is cut into slices like boards off a log. Each time a slice is cut, another pattern of wood grain is exposed. The pattern varies throughout the billet so the pattern on each slice is slightly different - except, that is, on adjacent slices. Adjacent slices have mirror image patterns and are used in making matched sets of Mokume Gane engagement and wedding rings. Since the matching slices can be made into a variety of shape and width combinations, couples can choose rings that are custom made for them alone, unique and unlike any other. Copper or silver layers are used between gold layer in pieces that will be acid etched. The acid dissolves the copper or silver layers below their original height, but does not affect the gold, giving a three dimensional, weathered look to the surface.