custom diamond ring

At Charleston Alexander, custom designed jewelry is our passion. Whether you are looking for a unique wedding ring, or want to redesign an heirloom piece, Charleston Alexander is the best place for custom design in the Metro DC area. Quite simply, this is what we do.

Custom designed ring


The modern jewelry design process relies upon thousands of years of expertise. Additional computer technology allows us to perfect a design in three-dimensional imaging before we start working with precious materials. Here is an inside peak at the design process we use at Charleston Alexander.

Step 1: CAD Jewelry Design

CAD stands for computer-aided design and CAM stands for computer-aided manufacturing. CAD software allows us to create jewelry using three-dimensional computer models for our customers before we ever start working with precious materials. CAD is a professional jeweler’s best tool and it is used by all the large jewelry manufactures. At Charleston Alexander, we use this technology to design custom jewelry for our customers. CAD lets John work closely with each customer in the design phase. We often start with a sketch of what the customer has in mind. The design is then perfected using the computer. This promotes greater flexibility and creativity and it helps John refine exactly what the customer wants before we ever start working with materials.


Step 2: Wax Model of the Piece

After the CAD design is finalized, we then create a wax model using CAM. A specialized wax prototype machine forms the wax model based upon the CAD design. This allows exact precision in the rendering of our custom designs. This level of perfection is almost impossible using the traditional hand carving of a wax model. At this stage, it is still possible to make small modifications to the design before casting the setting.


 vintage inspired custom ring

Step 3: Casting of the Final Setting

Finally, we cast the setting using the metal or metals the client has chosen for the design. The jewelry is then polished and the gemstones the client has chosen are set creating a one of a kind masterpiece!

Pear shaped custom designed ring