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Behind the Design: Details that Matter

From design sketch and digital drawings to finished products – this is how we add intricate details to each Arkai pendant necklace and bracelet we create.

1 Behind the design: details that matter1.1 Chapter 1: starts with a scroll1.2 Chapter 2: sketches & stones1.3 Chapter 3: from pencil to digital1.4 Chapter 4: now, we wait1.5 Chapter 5: updates & improvements1.6 Chapter 6: nth time's the charm

Chapter 1: Starts with a Scroll

This collection started with one of our brand researchers scrolling through IG. After noticing a resurgence of pendant necklaces, she decided to dive deeper. Checking our phones is something we all do. It's a minor detail that blends into the day. But for this story, it’s the detail that started this mini collection for Arkai.

We want to make interesting pieces that match well together and look good alone. And like the popular Arkai bracelet collection, each new pendant necklace must evoke a natural, exclusive, and well-traveled vibe.

Our goal is to design and source high-quality stones and materials… and design something that’ll make you stop when you’re scrolling through.

Chapter 2: Sketches & Stones

Arkai’s design team is taking the brief and transforming it into sketches. As this collection comes to life, we start thinking about finer details like the design of the skull, the placement of the logo, and the types of stone – we won’t compromise on natural stone. But what stones? What colors? These are questions we’re still facing.

After going through the first designs, we’ve agreed on a collection that includes 40+ different bracelets and necklaces. They can be worn to complement each other, but they’re designed with enough detail to stand alone.

We’ve also named the collection Rico. What do you think about that? Comment here and let us know what you’d name this collection…and what pieces you’d like to see added.

Chapter 3: From Pencil to Digital

Our digital designer turns each sketch into a digital drawing. This is where we start to see the pieces come to life – and where we realize details are missing and need to be added. We keep focusing on the intricacy because it matters to the Arkai man and the story he tells.

When creating a pendant necklace or a bracelet, size is everything. We 3D print each pendant to check proportions and details.

The scroll pendant was designed too large and had to be edited. Sounds simple enough… but one change affects everything from the stone to the dimensions of the skull. The only way to get something you’re proud of is to work at it.

From the start, we knew we wanted black, silver-tone, and gold-tone steel pieces, but after continued research, we’ve added rose-gold. What color will you choose?Are you a silver-tone or a gold-tone kind of guy?

Chapter 4: Now, We Wait

Now that all the changes are finalized and the last round of 3D printing checked, we’ll send the product sheets with dimensions, images, and materials to the manufacturer. It’s not long until we see our efforts in reality!

Chapter 5: Updates & Improvements

The first samples are in and they’re not what we expected. For any jewelry designer, this is all part of the process. It’s our chance to update the designs and choose a higher quality steel and stone. There are so many details going in each piece… we’re willing to take the time to get it right.


Having gone back and forth with the stone suppliers and manufacturers multiple times to combine the perfect samples, we were finally ready to start production. We used the approved samples to take the photos you see online and let the manufacturers know we want more like them. The first shipment of finished necklaces and bracelets went straight to the warehouse and will end up in your package. No matter how long it takes, we never put anything in an outbound package that we’re not proud of. And making sure every detail is right takes time and a heap of patience. But when it finally clicks, all that effort is worth it.