I’m going to share with you how we make the coin necklaces and pendants available in the Roberts & Co online store. A lucky coin necklace made from solid silver antique English coins.
First let me tell you a little bit about the coins we use to make the necklaces. Also what makes them so special. So then I’ll get onto the jewellery bench and share with you exactly how I turn coins into wearable pieces of jewellery.
We have a history of using coins here in England that dates back too the second century BC. The coins we use were made here in London by the Royal Mint. The Royal Mint can trace its history back to the year 886. So over a thousand years of history.
The Royal Mint
Once the Tower of London was built the Royal Mint moved in. So that’s where they produced the coins for around eight hundred years. The Royal Mint moved out of the Tower of London into their own building between 1809 and 1812. Moving into a building called Royal Mint Court.
Royal Mint court is just outside the walls of the castle at the end of Tower Bridge. Also it’s still there today so you can see where the coins we use were made. Royal Mint court looks like a fortress. However the Royal mint moved out in the 1960s. Moving out of London to Wales. However all the coins I use are pre-1920. So all have been made either in Royal Mint court or in the Tower of London.
I’ll tell you why we use coins minted before 1920. Up until 1920 the silver coloured coins that people carried in their pockets and spent in shops here in England were made from solid silver.
The same grade silver we use to make jewellery, sterling silver. So we can use traditional jewellery making techniques to turn pre-1920 coins into wearable pieces of jewellery.
Why wear coins as jewellery?
So people have been keeping coins and wearing coins as lucky charms as long as coins have existed. This isn’t a design that we came up with. It’s a centuries-old design., Different cultures over the centuries have had different minor details to the superstitions but the basic idea is the same. If you wear or keep a lucky coin it’ll bring you good luck. However I think today most people keep or wear coin jewellery not because they’re superstitious just because they think it looks cool.
So today the demand for coin jewellery is so great that there are companies around the world mass producing reproduction vintage coins and vintage coin necklaces. However what makes ours special is all of the coins were once legal tender here in England. They are genuine antique coins
Today I’m using coins minted in the Royal Mint here in Royal Mint court in London in 1919. We also use every year and can use every year we can get our hands on from coin collectors from pre-1920.
Three Pence Piece
Today I’m going to make three necklaces. Three three pence piece necklaces. These coins are also known as Thrup-anns or Thrup-nee-bits. I’m going to turn three three pence coins into pendants. One I will keep silver and the other two I’ll gold plate.
So all three are sterling silver two will be plated with gold. One yellow gold and one with red or rose gold.
So lets get on to the bench and turn the coins into pendants and necklaces.
okay so I’m at the bench with our three solid silver antique three pence pieces. Too each one of these I’m going to be soldering a three millimeter sterling silver jump ring. So the ring will allow it to be worn as a pendant.
The challenge here is getting the coin and the jump ring to the same temperature at the same time. Because completely different sized pieces of silver. So for this I’m going to be using a special flux. A blend of flux mixed with methylated spirits. So this will give the antique silver more protection than a standard flux like borax.
Also I’m gonna be using a micro soldering torch. So I get pinpoint accuracy. And so I can control the temperature of the two pieces very accurately. Once the two pieces, the coin and the jump ring are at the correct temperature I can then apply the solder. Using a solder pick to the right place at the right time.
So once I’ve soldered the three jump rings too our three coins. Each one can be worn as a pendant on a necklace. We’re going to add a five millimeter sterling silver jump ring to each one as a bail. And we’re going to solder it closed.
So now we’ve added a three millimeter jump ring to the top of each coin and a five millimeter bail to that. We now need to clean and polish each pendant. Also gold plate the pendants and their necklaces.
So here we have our finished necklaces and pendants.
We’ve started with some solid silver antique coins. Made by the Royal Mint here in London in 1919. So after adding two rings to each one they become pendants. we’ve cleaned and polished them and added each one to a necklace we make in our workshop.
22ct Yellow Gold
We’ve plated one of the coin necklaces with 22ct yellow gold. So it looks very similar in colour to a solid gold coin. we’ve plated one of the coin necklaces with 18ct red or rose gold. So it looks just like a piece of antique fine jewellery.
If you’d like to see close-up images of these ones or the other years we make then check out our store to see which years we’ve currently got available.
I hope you enjoyed this look at how we make these antique coins into wearable pieces of jewellery.