Cabochon FAQs

Cabochon FAQs

Many jewelry designers prefer using Cabochon when making their designs. Cabochon may be new to you and you may be wondering how it can be used to make jewels. You may already know the basics of cabochon, but may decide to find out more on how it can be used, and what other components you need to make jewelry with cabochons. We will go through some common questions and answers of cabochons.

What is Cabochon?

Cabochon is a gemstone element used for jewelry making. They can be used to make rings, pendants, or other creative jewelry piece. Here are some of the basic features you can use to identify Cabochon.

  • Flat bottom, so you can glue it to a flat metal back or set it into a bezel setting.
  • Dome shape top.  Mostly smooth surface, but sometimes faceted.
  • Not transparent stone. So the backing metal won’t be shown.
  • Shaped and Polished from Natural stones.

Most times, Cabochons are made from natural semi-precious gemstones. This is majorly because of the size and cost of the gemstones. The size of popular cabochons ranges from 8mm to 15mm, weighted from one to several grams (5 to 20 carat). It will be either difficult to find precious stones in this size or the cost of the stone will be too expensive.

How Cabochons can be used in jewelry making?

Since Cabochons has a flat bottom, they are usually glued to a flat bail back or other kind of flat backing metal. The backing metal component can be made into a pendant, rings, or other component in your jewelry piece. Cabochons can also be set into a bezel cup by using a bezel rocker or pusher. The bezelled Cabochons can then be made into a pendant or connectors for your necklace, bracelet, or ring.

What shape can Cabochon come in with?

Cabochon comes in many different shapes. The most popular ones are round, oval, and teardrop shapes. Some also come in irregular shapes. Many designers love the unusual shapes of Cabochon as it allows them make each of their jewelry pieces a unique one.

Why most Cabochons are not transparent?

Normally, Cabochons are made from non-transparent stones. One of the reasons is that Cabochon gemstones will either be glued to a metal back or bezel set into a bezel cup. A transparent stone will show the backing metal or even trace of the glue, which is not very nice. Often times, a rich color opaque stone with a deep glow from the inside will be polished and used as Cabochon.

Why most Cabochons are not faceted?

Some gemstones are soft or brittle and they are not suitable to be faceted. Those stones are mostly made into smooth round beads or Cabochons. Also, faceted surface is more suitable for transparent gemstones to reflect the lights and we have highlighted that the transparent stones are not suitable for Cabochons. However, you can find that some semi-transparent stones are made into faceted Cabochons and they give it a very unique look and beautiful reflecting lights.

I hope the above Q&As can give you a basic understanding of cabochon and help you decide if you want to include them in your jewelry design. Leave your comments below of your thoughts and experiences with cabochons in your jewelry making projects. Enjoy!

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