Settings in Jewelry - 2: Channel Settings. Post 121.
Last week we began to look at some of the settings used to hold gems in jewelry. We talked about pave and invisible settings.
Sometimes, we confuse invisible and Channel settings.
#4763 Diamond Band. Channel set rectangular diamonds give a rich, sophisticated look to this band.
The round diamonds are pave set.
Channel settings are often seen in tennis or line bracelets as well as other forms of jewelry.
In Channel settings, the stones are placed between a pair of parallel metal bars, the upper portions of which may be pushed in slightly, helping to hold the gems in place. When the bars cross the line of stones, it is known as a bar setting.
If we compare Channel settings to the invisible settings we looked at last week, the biggest visible difference is that we clearly see the metal holding the stones in place in a channel setting. Unlike the invisible setting where the stone fits at the bottom onto a tiny threadlike rail, the channel set gems are held in place from the sides and slightly above. Also, channel settings usually hold a line of single gems between the metal, whereas the 'look' of both pave and invisible settings is a broad sea of gemstones.
#5739 Red gems tightly set between parallel metal bars.
Channel Settings: usually the stones in a channel setting are faceted squares and should be well-matched as regards size and color. This is especially true of Art Deco channel jewelry and high quality work in periods after that.
Channel settings show off the gleam and reflective quality of the gems to a greater degree than do pave settings because they are presented in a continuum of the stone, all on one surface level. I have read that channel set stones are usually bigger than pave set gems, but I don’t know how true this is as a generalization.
#4692. Here is an example of channel set round diamonds. They don't have the same tight fit as the rectangular and square examples above.