How long is the waiting list?
The waiting list is currently 2-3 months long.
I want to repurpose some of my own jewellery - how much metal do I need?
When it comes to redesigning existing jewellery there is no such thing as an average amount or weight that will be needed for any one piece. Every design is individually created and the weight of metal you need will depend on many different variables such as size, stone settings, width, depth.
The jewellery pieces you have to re-work may be more traditional in design meaning they are lighter as it has been made from a hollow casting. Hannah's designs are chunkier and more robust in contrast as they are forged individually by hand so often requre a much heavier weight than you might expect. Where there is not quite enough metal from your pieces to create the design you would like, extra metal can be sourced to add in.
If there are any metal or stones that are leftover after the process, they are sent back alongside you new jewellery.
With this in mind we cannot give you even a rough idea of how much metal you'll need until you get in touch and we go through the design process. There is no obligation to go ahead with your design once you've gone through the process and been given a quote.
What metals or stones can we work with?
Hannah can work with all types of Gold and Silver but doesn't work with Platinum, Palladium or base metals (ie Copper, Brass etc) If you are repurposing existing jewellery it could be that we can remove stones from items made from Platinum/Palladium etc
She works with and can source most precious and semi-precious stones but tries to avoid some of the softer ones such as Abalone which tends to be not very hard wearing and doesn't lend itself to every day wear. Any concerns about the fragility of stones will be discussed with you during the design process.
If you aren't too sure what metals you have you might be able to spot a hallmark and we can tell you what it is. Often jewellery has a '9K' or '375' stamp without any other hallmarks, this usually means it is a plated item. Hannah tests all jewellery when it arrives to be certain it is what it says it is!!
If you have a selection of jewellery that has different karats of gold eg 9k and 18k, these can be melted together to create a hybrid which can sometimes be hallmarked at 14k for example. Silver and Gold can be used in the same piece. There are no hard and fast rules, just ask.
Sometimes we get requests to work with more obscure items such as Gold Teeth, Cutlery and Sentimental items - let us know if you have something like this that you would like to include and we can tell you if it might be possible.
Can you buy any jewellery from me?
We don't buy metal or stones from clients but if you are having your jewellery repurposed and there is metal or stones left over, these will be returned to you alongside your new piece.
How much will it cost?
Like "How much metal do I need?" this question is awfully tricky without a design. Having a commission made for you does mean there is no set scale on which you can be given a guide price ie. "so much for a ring" or "this much for a bangle" because it depends on the design - the size, the detail, the time taken to make it, the stones or metals added in, the stone settings, the finish. All of these things will have an impact. The cost of a simple ring band versus a thick, detailed band with flush set stones will be quite different. Bare in mind that unlike normal jewellery work where sheet, wire and settings are bought in ready formed to create a piece, re-purposing is a far more intensive process. Your jewellery will need to be tested, taken apart, cleaned, melted down and forged into wire/sheet just to get to the point where it can be used to create something.
Hannah will go through the design with you in as much detail as possible to get a really clear idea of how you would like your finished piece to look and then a quote will be created. To give you an idea of how this is worked out, it comprises of the following:
Metal and Stones.
Regardless of whether the metal is being sourced here or if more needs to be added to your own - An estimate of how much is needed will be given and this is mostly impacted by how you invision your design. Stones too can vary in price. Diamonds will cost much more than Amethysts for example.
As mentioned above, re-purposing your jewellery is a far more time intensive process than a straightforward commission where components are bought in ready to use. Every single component of your new jewellery is individually hanf forged and constructed in the studio for you. This takes longer than using ready made cast items.
Hallmarking & Postage costs
Your final piece will be sent off to the Edinburgh Assay Office to have the metal tested and stamped with a Hallmark - this Hallmark is your legal guarantee of the quality of the metal. Once the item is finished we'll post it using Royal Mail Special Delivery so that it is insured, signed for and can be tracked until it arrives safely with you.
If you have a budget in mind, please do tell us and we'll work with you to try to create something that fits with that. We aren't mind readers and there is absolutely no judgement on any budget you might have. Please tell us upfront and where possible we'll try to work within the budget or try to come up with creative alternatives. To give you an idea - commission work generally starts with a minimum of 10 hours work (starting at £325), additional costs such as adding in extra stones/metals as well hallmarking and shipping costs will be added on top of this
Can I pay in installments?
No, asterlingidea is not a regulated financial entity so it's not possible to take installments or deposits.
Full payment is required up front before work can begin. Once you have been through the design process and you are provided with your quote, there is no obligation to go ahead. If you do decide to proceed then we'll pop a custom listing on to the website to make payment. Payments are processed by PayPal, but there is no need to login or create a PayPal account - you can checkout as a guest and pay by credit/debit card.
How long will it take?
Production of your piece takes around 3 months from the point of payment to being shipping out to you. Hannah will let you know a rought time scale when finalising your design but it's worth keeping in mind that sometimes things can take a little longer than expected. If you need your jewellery for a specific date, it is imperative that you let this be known at the start of the design process.
If you need your design to be prioritised – an engagement for example – this might be possible to do at a premium, please ask as soon as possible.
I've seen this design I like, can it be recreated?
If you have seen anything from the asterlingidea social media pages or this website then that's a great way of illustrating the type of finish, settings and style that you would like from your jewellery. If perhaps you have seen something from elsewhere that's fine for inspiration too, but be aware that Hannah will not create designs that aren't in keeping with her own, unique style - She wouldn't take on traditional or fine styles of design. The plagiarism of other Artists/Jewellers is something we feel very strongly about, under no circumstances will we replicate somebody elses design - please don't ask.
I've seen a commissioned piece on asterlingidea's social media – how much does it cost?
Seeing some of the commission's posted on Social Media is a good place to gather inspiration for your deisgn – however when it comes to giving you a “Ball park figure” for the one you've seen on facebook, it is unlikely that the price would be identical each and every time. This is impacted by the amount of metal/stones that you might be having remodelled, the size (ie your ring size could be largely different to that of the one you had seen), more metal might need to be added to your design and the type of stones and their settings. What might seem like a minute detail to change, can lead to a large difference in the time needed to execute it.
The formula used to create a quote is the same for every commission, it is only the details that change with each one.
There isn't any secrecy regarding pricing but we do value our client's confidentiality, and as such won't enter into any discussion about how much they paid for their piece.
Do I need to be local to Dumfries and Galloway?
Absolutely not! 95% of work is undertaken remotely with clients all over the world via e-mail and social media, whom Hannah never meets face to face! We use Royal Mail Special delivery as it is tracked, insured and signed for giving everyone a peace of mind when sending their jewellery to the studio or sending it out to clients.
You are more than welcome to arrange an appointment to come and visit the studio to discuss your commission. Just get in touch to set something up.