How do I order dvb jewelry?
Prices for sterling silver and some gold items are listed throughout this website. Price lists can be downloaded here. Email, telephone or fax to place an order or to finda dvb retailer near you.
We will quote prices for higher karat, or colored gold or platinum items on request.
You can also add your name to our mailing list for infrequent updates of new products and special offers. All email and address information is held in strict confidence and you can be assured your contact information will not be divulged to any third party.
How are rings made?
dvb rings are cast by the lost wax method, a handcrafting technique.
Rubber molds are made from master models for each piece or ring size. Hot wax is injected into the molds under pressure to produce wax replicas of the ring model.
The waxes are then surrounded by a medium which will replicate the form of the wax. The wax is melted and molten metal is introduced into the mold to fill the space occupied by the wax to produce the casting. The casting is cleaned, correctly sized and shaped, before polishing.
A reasonably accurate approximation can be taken with our downloadable paper sizing gauges, full details and downloads here.
Alternatively dvb can also send you a plastic size gauge to measure your finger in US ring sizes. Please email us with your address.
Can rings be made larger or smaller?
dvb casts rings in whole sizes and the casting can be increased in size by up to 0.75 of one US size during finishing, though the ring can be damaged in the process and may need to be remade.
dvb cannot accept responsibility for damage to rings caused by sizing operations performed outside our own workshops. Once the ring is finished, resizing a ring is a costly and time-consuming operation. It is important to determine your ring size accurately before placing an order. Once sized to a fractional size the ring cannot be later reduced in size.
Why do customers sometimes complain that the ring size
There are many technical reasons why ring sizes vary due to the manufacturing process. While most of these variations are removed in the cleaning and polishing of the casting, there will always be very slight variations in finished weight and size.
Ring sizes are measured using a mandrel, and there is no mandatory US standard for ring sizes. Mandrels also vary slightly in accuracy between manufacturers. dvb uses the finest quality stainless steel mandrels produced by Gesswein and Co, different mandrels may give a slightly different reading.
Are the dimensions given on this site accurate?
Band widths are given in millimeters on the detail pages but may vary by up to 5% due to the casting method and hand finishing process. Band width may increase with ring size depending on the nature of the design, especially with reproduction medieval rings but is usually fairly constant.
How long does it take to make my ring?
On average it takes approximately 3-4 weeks to make your ring, depending on the time of year and pressure in our workshop. Many of our retailers have items in stock for immediate shipment.
Rush services are available for an additional payment.
dvb keeps many styles of sterling silver rings in inventory for immediate shipment and stocks of castings in gold to try and keep lead times to a minimum. Some special commissions which were made to incorrect sizes, metals or finishes are available to retail customers only at 40% off our normal retail price on our specials page and can be shipped immediately.
dvb retail orders are returnable within 28 days for sterling silver and 14K gold items.
Orders for platinum, 18k or colored gold pieces are only accepted as firm sales and are subject to a non returnable deposit. Returns other than for a manufacturing defect will only be accepted at the discretion of dvb and will be subject to the loss of the deposit.
Should you need to return an item it must be returned to the store from where it was purchased, not to dvb unless purchased directly from dvb. Please call before returning to receive an authorization code.
Why do the available sizes vary?
Normally we make sizes from 5-11 which covers over 95% of requested sizes. For the most popular rings we may additionally have sizes 4,12 and occasionally 13. Some reproduction rings where the original was of a very small size it may not have been possible or desirable to scale the ring to large sizes, and these rings may only be available in sizes 5-8. Children's rings are available as small as US size 3.
What does authentic reproduction mean?
Many dvb rings are authorized reproductions of originals found in museums throughout Europe and North America. Many of the originals were excavated from historic sites or have been in circulation for hundreds of years, and therefore show the marks of time. These rings are exact copies of ancient originals, the marks left over time will appear on the reproduction as well as the original.
What is sterling silver?
Sterling silver is 92.5% pure silver plus additives to give the silver added hardness and durability. dvb silver is marked 925 to show the standard of purity. See glossary
Why do silver rings sometimes become dull or black?
Silver and to a much lesser extent gold and the metals with which they are alloyed, will react with sulfur in the air, commonly called tarnish. The rate at which tarnishing occurs depends on atmospheric conditions, especially humidity.
Perfumes, lotions and hairspray may also react with sterling silver. For a few people, there may be a reaction with the skin. Personal skin chemistry varies and some people cannot wear silver (or gold) due to the rapidity with which the reaction occurs or the skin discolors.
A different skin reaction may affect some people from the antique applied to sterling silver pieces, especially the interior surface of rings of cuffs. This reaction may blacken the silver and leave a residue on the skin. While every effort is made to remove excess antique in the manufacturing process, traces will inevitably remain. The reaction will subside within a few days and the ring can be cleaned in the normal way.
What do I do if the silver blackens?
Tarnish can be removed easily with proprietary silver cleaners and cloths. Gentle detergent and warm water will keep silver bright and free of dirt and surface deposits for everyday wear.
What is antiquing?
All dvb silver rings (for gold it is optional) are "antiqued" using a chemicalal process during manufacture to speed the tarnishing process in the recesses of engraving to enhance the legibility of the inscription.
The process is irreversible with our gold antiquing, though with silver it can be removed. When the ring is finally polished, permanently darkened areas remain in the engraving making it more distinct. As gold does not easily react with other agents, the antiquing is achieved by electroplating with rhodium.
A dark black cannot be achieved in this way on gold or platinum, electroplated antiquing is dark gray only, though dvb considers it to be superior for its permanence. Applied, painted finishes used by other manufacturers which though dark black, will deteriorate or even fall out in a short time.
What is the difference between 14K and 18K gold?
14K is 14 parts per 24 pure gold (approx 58.3%), though dvb uses the higher European standard of 58.5%. 18K is 18 parts per 24 pure gold (approx 75%).
Pure gold is a soft metal and therefore 18K is much softer than 14K, though 18K yellow gold is richer in color. The karats are stamped on the inside of the ring 585 for 14K or 750 for 18K.
Why do rings sometimes break?
During casting, impurities can sometimes be introduced into the molten metal, leaving weaknesses in the ring when it solidifies. (Known as porosity). dvb almost always detects these weaknesses during manufacture and we remake the ring, but occasionally it is undetectable after final polishing.
This is most often the reason for delays to customer orders. Very rarely the ring may break after being worn for no obvious reason. This is extremely rare and dvb will remake the ring for you should this occur. We are able to detect breakages due to poor attempts at sizing, and cannot repair rings damaged in this way.
Why should enamel not be used on wedding rings?
Enamel is applied to the surface only, and while strong, will not withstand constant daily wear unless treated with care. Enamel rings should not be recommended as wedding bands for this reason; a plain or antiqued ring is a more practical choice. The gold will last forever but inevitably the enamel will be damaged by constant wear over the many years a wedding ring must last.
Why do enamel colors vary?
There are two basic types of enamel:
* vitreous (or hard) enamel which after firing in a kiln is similar in composition to glass. It is more durable and long lasting. Red vitreous enamels are unstable and have a tendency to reduce to brown in firing.
* resin based (or soft) enamels which are softer but more versatile in color, and much less expensive to produce.
dvb uses hard enamel for its gold rings and soft enamels on sterling silver pieces.
Why does dvb not have e-commerce
or online ordering?
Jewelry, especially wedding rings are very special, personal purchases. There are many considerations and issues which we think deserve and require personalized service. We prefer you to have the satisfaction and confidence in your purchase that only direct personal service can afford. We support our resellers to provide this service to you. We realize some people will need or wish to order online either from our trusted online resellers or directly to dvb. We want you to be satisfied with your lifetime purchase, and make sure we know exactly what you want before we make your rings, and that you are satisfied with your purchase after you receive them.