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Michael Jensen

Shop Michael Jensen Designs at Serengeti West!

Meet Michael Jensen Designs

Michael Jensen Designs is comprised of husband and wife team Michael and Catherine Jensen. This duo creates beautiful, unexpected jewelry. Michael is a BFA graduate of the University of Wisconsin Whitewater. While in college, Michael studied sculpture and completed an apprenticeship in metalsmithing. It is easy to see the inclusion of sculpture technique in his jewelry.

Michael Jensen

Catherine was raised abroad. Her international experiences introduced her to the worlds of archaeology and museums. Because of this, she experienced some of the finest jewelry and art. Catherine is a GIA Graduate Gemologist and brings extensive gem knowledge to the partnership. Coupled with Michael’s expertise in metalwork and sculpting, they are a dynamic duo.

Michael and Catherine call New Mexico home. Certainly, the landscape of the southwest inspires them. You’ll notice clean, simple lines in these designs. They prefer to incorporate recycled metals and natural stones. Equally important are their attention to detail, craftsmanship, and originality.

One interesting aspect of their design is the VETUS texture. The sterling silver portions of their jewelry have a unique finish. Specifically, this texture mimics the finish of architectural ruins. This design aesthetic speaks to nature’s presence in the ancient world. You’re unlikely to see anything quite like it from other designers.

Michael Jensen Designs prefers to use natural stones. That is to say, they avoid using enhanced or treated gems whenever possible. Frequently, the jewelry includes crystal, cabochon, or faceted gems. They are certain to disclose any color-treated stones when used.

Now Available in San Luis Obispo

Serengeti West Fine Jewelers is proud to be the San Luis Obispo home of Michael Jensen Designs. Whether you shop our ready-to-wear collection or prefer to custom design a piece, we can help. Visit us at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo Tuesday through Saturday. Or, contact us to learn how to create your own treasure.

Do I Need Ring Sizing Beads

Do I Need Ring Sizing Beads?

Is your engagement ring spinning? Perhaps it’s top heavy, or maybe your ring size is large because of knuckle issues? If you’ve been thinking about adding ring sizing beads, allow us to help you with your decision.

What are Ring Sizing Beads?

Sizing beads are small metal knobs added to the inside of a ring shank. These little beads are added to help counter-balance top-heavy rings. Additionally, they are used by people whose knuckles are much larger than their finger base. Typically they are the same metal as the rest of the ring.

Ring Sizing Beads San Luis Obispo

The addition of sizing beads is a relatively simple process. Furthermore, your ring won’t sustain long-term damage if you choose to have them removed. Overall, this solution can compensate for the weight of your stones.

We often get asked if beads are comfortable. It’s hard to give a definitive answer. Some people don’t notice their sizing assistants once placed, while others can’t seem to get used to how their ring feels. Only you can decide if this is the right solution for you.

Not interested in adding knobs to the inside of your ring? There are other options. One of our favorite solutions is the addition of Cliq technology. This tiny hinge creates precise sizing. Whether your ring is large and heavy or you have arthritis, Cliq fits the base of your finger with perfection.

Cliq Rings Superfit Rings
Cliq Rings Superfit Rings

Our team will size the bottom of your finger with Cliq’s special sizing system. Regardless of future knuckle changes, you’ll likely never need to size your ring again. This unique technology works best when your ring is kept very clean, as the mechanism is very precise.

Visit us to learn more about our sizing options. While you’re here, we’ll clean and check your ring for free! Serengeti West Fine Jewelers is located at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo.

Steven Battelle Jewelry: Shop our Newest Collection

Steven Battelle Jewelry

Serengeti West Fine Jewelers is proud to feature Steven Battelle jewelry. An artisan from Soquel, California, Battelle is a true craftsman. You will find small, historic details throughout his work because he is inspired by ancient cultures. For instance, Steven Battelle‘s rose cut diamond earrings include a dainty twist motif.

Steven Battelle jewelry uses high karat gold, such as 18 karat gold. 18 karat gold is purer than 14 or 10 karat. Additionally, 18 karat gold has a more yellow appearance. Many gemstones look beautiful next to this yellow gold.

Our collection includes black diamonds, rustic colored diamonds, and gemstones. We think aquamarine looks especially beautiful in Battelle’s designs. Moreover, it’s important to know we stock a broad selection of this jewelry. That is to say, we offer earrings, rings, and necklaces.

It is important to note that Battelle also enjoys ancient coins. You can find pieces with Greek and Roman coins in his collection. Please inquire if you would like to purchase a coin piece.

Additionally, Steven Battelle offers wedding bands. Furthermore, we could commission engagement rings from this designer. If you enjoy Battelle’s unique approach to jewelry, allow us to help you customize a ring. Your finished project will surely be just what you want.

Please visit us at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo, to see these designs in person. Or, you can contact us with any questions you may have.

Your Jewelry Repair Questions Answered!

Serengeti West Fine Jewelers has been in business for 34 years. In that time, we’ve received a lot of questions. Some of these jewelry repair questions come up again and again, so we’d like to take some time to share the answers with you.

Jewelry Repair Questions

Why is my white gold ring turning yellow?

There’s no such thing as naturally occurring white gold. In fact, all white gold begins as yellow gold. The white appearance is created by adding alloys (other metals) and dipping in a rhodium solution. Because newer blends of white gold are more advanced, these pieces may not need as much refreshing as their older counterparts. If your white gold jewelry seems to be “warming” or appearing less brilliant white, we can help! A small rhodium plating will do the trick and have your piece of jewelry looking like new in no time.

Can you size my ring?

The short answer is yes, we can size your ring. While there are some exceptions to the rule, we provide this service hundreds of times each year. Some things to know: we’ll want to size your finger. If you’re swollen or your finger has been irritated, we may want to measure a few times before settling on your final size. Also, we’ll want to give you an accurate quote as many qualities may impact the price. An example of these may be the metal it is made out of (platinum, 14 karat gold, 18 karat gold, sterling silver), how many stones it has, if it is an infinity ring, and more. Because each ring is unique we must see it in person in order to properly quote the repair.

A stone fell out of my engagement ring! Can you help?

Before you panic, know that this is something we encounter frequently. Because of the small nature of today’s micro pave rings, it’s not uncommon to have very small stones fall out from time to time. It is relatively inexpensive to repair this, so stop in and talk with one of our associates to learn more and get a customized estimate. We are able to use loose diamonds to perfectly match your existing stones. Also, know that professional ring cleanings are free and allow us to spot any issues with your stones or jewelry before they become a problem.

Jewelry Repair Questions Answered: How Long Will my Repair Take?

It should be noted that (like most in the jewelry business) we do not offer on-the-spot repair. Because jewelry is a precise art, we need to have proper time to address any issues and ensure quality work. On average, our repairs take seven to 10 days. It should be noted that some things can impact this schedule. Custom work, complicated jobs, or holiday schedules can cause this time to vary. Additionally, delayed acceptance of an estimate after it has been delivered can cause the process to slow down as well. Feel free to visit us in person at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo to find out about your specific jewelry repair and ask any questions you may have!

How do I Clean my Engagement Ring?

How do I Clean my Engagement Ring

How do I clean my engagement ring?

When you first receive your engagement ring, it’s as brilliant and sparkling as can be. But, over time the sparkle may dull just a little. While it’s just as beautiful, you may be asking yourself “How do I clean my engagement ring?” We can help! Follow along for some helpful tips.

Firstly, allow us to say that we’ll happily clean and inspect your ring for free at any time. You read right, there’s no charge for a professional cleaning! Additionally, we can ensure that your beautiful ring is always in good repair by inspecting prongs, channels, and other condition issues. By having your ring professionally cleaned and inspected often, you’ll know if there are any repair issues to correct before any damage happens to your ring.

Our first piece of advice: don’t wash dishes or apply lotion while wearing your jewelry. Because soaps and lotions can cause oils to adhere more quickly to your jewelry, they’ll make your pieces look dirty much faster. We also highly suggest having a safe place to put your ring while at home. You’ll always know where it is, even when it isn’t on your finger. Ultimately, you won’t get it dirty while doing housework.

How do I Clean my Engagement Ring: What Not to do

Whatever you do, be choosy about what you use to clean your ring. It’s never a good idea to use caustic or corrosive chemicals to clean your ring. These chemicals can eat away at the precious metals of your ring and cause damage over time. Additionally, it’s very important to use products that are non-toxic and ammonia free. Degreasers are an excellent choice. We suggest using a mixture of simple green and water and gently scrubbing with a toothbrush from time to time. That is to say, when you can’t make it to our shop for a deep clean.

Visit us at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo, for your complimentary cleaning!

What do I do with my old Jewelry?

We hear it all the time. “What do I do with my old jewelry? I have so much I never wear just sitting in a box.” Not to worry, we’ve got the answers you need!

What do I do with my old jewelry? Resell it!

Have a few pieces of fine jewelry from past relationships? Beautiful necklaces, rings, or other pieces, but because of their origin, you wouldn’t wear them again? You may be able to consign these pieces. Depending on a few factors, including quality and style, we may be able to help you. Consignment is sure way to get the most out of your old pieces of jewelry when parting with them. Check with our gemologist to see if your pieces are eligible for consignment at Serengeti West!

Sell your gold for cash

Selling cash for scrap gold is an excellent way to make extra money. Some styles don’t age well, while other pieces may have broken over time. Because you may not be interested in wearing these designs again, they make an excellent option for scrap gold. Serengeti West is happy to purchase your gold, platinum, and more for cash. We even offer a 20% bonus when that value is used in store, toward a new purchase.

Restyle old sentimental pieces!

what do i do with my old jewelry

We’re all familiar with heirloom jewelry. Perhaps you own something that has been passed down but needs some work. Or, maybe you’d like to re purpose stones from an outdated piece. We can help!

Customer Erin visited us with an heirloom masonic ring.

“The ring originally belonged to my great grandmother’s second husband. The setting had just been sitting around in my mom’s jewelry box since my grandma passed away back in 2001. She came across it recently and asked whether my husband Ken would like to wear it, if we replaced the stone. It originally held a 2+ carat diamond that my uncle used to propose to a long-ago girlfriend, who later disappeared with the stone. Of course, I got excited right away because I knew he would be into the design and history of the ring. Plus, it’s the companion to my great-grandmother’s engagement ring, which is part of my wedding set now (and which you’re currently refurbishing as well!).”

“I wanted to keep the wonderful eagle head prongs intact. Janett came up with the idea of setting a bezel inside them…which happened to be the perfect size for the Chatham ruby from your collection! And a high-quality synthetic stone is totally period and style appropriate for the ring.
It turned out even more beautifully than expected. The bezel looks as seamless as though it had been original to the ring.
Bringing the ring back to life was such a fun experience from beginning to end, and I’m so happy to have a special family piece back in use!”

Visit us and allow us at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo, and we’ll show you the possibilities with your own jewelry!

Jewelry Gifts Under $300

The holidays are almost here, and while some people enjoy shopping for everyone on their list, others are at a loss for what to do. Not to worry, we’ve got amazing jewelry gifts under $300 that will make everyone happy!

Jewelry Gifts Under $300

Jewelry Gifts Under $300 Black Spinel Necklace

Photo by Amanda Zippi

72 Inch Black Spinel Chain

This necklace is the perfect gift for anyone in your life that loves the look of layering. 72 inches of black spinel that can be worn short or long, it features four pear-shaped pieces that add additional texture and dangle beautifully. The necklace is connected using gold filled pieces. Above all, it looks great with casual or elegant outfits.

This piece retails for $162.50

Gold Filled Druzy Necklace

Jewelry Gifts Under $300 Gold Filled Druzy Quartz Necklace

Photo by Amanda Zippi

Druzy is what we call sparkly crystals that appear on minerals, much like what you see on the inside of a geode. They’re beautiful and intricate, but not as expensive as many gemstones you may see. This quartz druzy hangs from an intricate gold filled chain that measures 21 inches from clasp to clasp. Certainly, this would make a beautiful gift for someone who enjoys nature, likes to wear unique “conversation piece” type jewelry, or has a bohemian look.

This necklace is available for $125.00

Earrings

Labradorite EarringsThese custom labradorite earrings are an incredible statement piece. Wrapped in black silver, they feature large faceted pear-shaped labradorite pieces that measure roughly 27 millimeters by 16 millimeters. They’re versatile and can be worn with jeans and a sweater or a cocktail dress and perfectly complete the look.

They retail for $195.00

Additionally, a pair of sterling silver hoops would make a great stocking stuffer. Ranging from 1″ to 2.25″ in diameter, these earrings start as low as $27.00

Rose Quartz Ring

Rose Quartz Ring in Sterling SilverRose quartz is a beautiful pink stone that has been worn for ages. One of our favorite affordable gifts is this rose quartz ring in sterling silver. Because it is a light pink, it will pair brilliantly with nearly any outfit. It’s available for just $80.00.

Join us this holiday season to see more of our great jewelry gifts under $300. We are located at 951 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo. We look forward to meeting you!

Grey Diamond Engagement Ring

Beautiful Engagement Rings under $2,500

Shop Our Collection of Engagement Rings under $2,500

In these times of mortgages, student loan payments, and rising costs of planning a wedding, spending three months’ salary on an engagement ring may not be practical for everyone. Lucky for us, anything goes in engagement rings these days, meaning two things for you when you’re ready to pop the question: your options are nearly limitless, and creativity can help you get the most bang for your buck. Follow along as Serengeti West helps you check out stunning rings under $2,500.

Natural Colored Diamond Rings

Rose cut rustic grey diamond engagement rings

Rose cut rustic grey diamond engagement ring

Natural colored diamonds are a great option for couples who are a little less mainstream, but still want the lasting symbolism of a diamond. Rustic grey diamonds have a gorgeous body color that wears well in gold, and looks great with nearly any wardrobe. In this instance, we’ve set a 1.07 carat rose cut diamond in 18 karat yellow gold with a slight hammered finish. This beauty is a statement all its own.

More is Less

Natural Brown colored diamonds rose cut engagement rings

Natural bourbon colored diamonds. Photo courtesy of Jeffrey San Juan

Focusing on a few stones (as opposed to centralizing all of the carat weight in one stone) can help keep costs down. Our bourbon colored five-diamond ring boasts a whopping 1.73ctw of rose cut diamonds. Each diamond is bezel-set in 14 karat gold, giving each stone its own place to sparkle.

Halo Engagement Rings

White Gold Engagement Rings San Luis Obispo

.33 carat round brilliant halo engagement ring

Find yourself more of a traditionalist? Not to worry, there’s a lot that will appeal to classic styles. Halo-style engagement rings are incredibly popular, because they add a little extra sparkle to any solitaire. Take our .33 carat round brilliant cut diamond, enveloped by .22 carat total weight diamond halo; priced at just under $2,000 it gives tremendous sparkle without breaking the bank.

Estate Engagement Rings

Engagement Rings Under $2,500

Edwardian engagement ring

Estate jewelry can be a beautiful value. Maybe you’re ready to have an heirloom piece cleaned up and sized for the next generation. Or, perhaps you would prefer to purchase an estate piece to start new traditions. Whatever your motivation, we’ve got just what you need. Our 18 karat white gold Belle Epoque engagement ring features delicate filigree details and a .31 carat diamond in the center. This beauty would have nearly anyone saying “yes”.

Ready to pop the question? Stop by and talk with some of our staff and let us help you navigate the path to your own “I do”.