Milgrain also spelled millgrain, is a jewelry design element that you probably must have come across several times but may not have known much about. The term milgrain is derived from the French word millegrain, which means a thousand grains. Just as its literal meaning suggests, milgrain detailing is a close-set row of beads that infuses added texture to any piece of jewelry.
Milgrain detailing rose in popularity during the first half of the 20th century. It is a common design element on rings and wedding bands of the Art Deco era. This antique jewelry designing technique is also used in contemporary jewelry in order to give pieces the much sought-after vintage feel. Milgrain detailing is often seen on the edges of rings, earrings and pendants. It can also be used to add texture to any other part of a piece of jewelry.
There are several methods of incorporating milgrain detailing into jewelry. Tiny beads of precious metal can be fabricated into a piece or a tool that molds metal into a beaded pattern can also be used. Another way of doing this is using computer designed jewelry molds. While most often the beads created are small and round, they can also be oval or square, and of different sizes.
In modern times, milgrain detailing is used in jewelry to produce a vintage look that is reminiscent of Art Deco jewelry. It acts as a beautiful frame around the center stone, highlighting the gem’s irresistible beauty and grandeur. Milgrain detailing also helps accentuate the other unique and important design elements in a piece of jewelry.
Milgrain is one such design technique that gives jewelry a hand crafted, detailed feel. Apart from giving a piece a romantic, vintage look, it also evokes the beauty and craftsmanship of Art Deco jewelry. An engagement or wedding ring with milgrain detailing will be a great choice for anyone with an eye of detail. Milgrain accented earrings and pendants are also apt for those who’d like to infuse some old-world charm to their everyday wardrobe.