In the past, when a jeweler created a piece of jewelry, he/she would sit at their bench with a block of wax. They had to hand carve the block of wax to the exact size and proportions needed to make the item they were creating. It was extremely difficult and time consuming to create the detail and delicacy that is required in many of the jewelry items that exist. It truly is an art form.
As computers became a larger part of our lives and their capabilities grew, Computer Aided Design (CAD) programs were created. These programs opened up an entirely new way to create jewelry. The programs allow for intricacy that is next to impossible to create in wax carvings. The programs also allow the customer to see a 3-D rendering/model of their item being created. The customer can then ask the jeweler for changes or adjustments while the design is still on the computer, whereas with a wax, it is usually impossible to make changes without starting over. Another benefit to the CAD programs is the ability to make multiple renderings of the item being created, each with a different option, thus allowing the customer to pick the option they like best. Once the rendering is approved, the wax is printed by a special machine. From there, the item is cast in the metal of choice and set with stones. The process is incredible and allows for the creation of jewelry to reach new levels of imagination and art.