It's easy enough to do. You select the initials you would like, decide what shape you would like them to take and if there's no-one with that mark already, it's yours. Simple.
This week saw the first batch of hallmarked items return from the Assay Office, and very good they looked too.
Before they hallmark your item, they have to test the metal to make sure that the metal is pure enough to carry a hallmark. This involves taking a small sample out of your item, usually from the place you tell them to....somewhere un-noticable. Well I thought it was going to be a scraping from the inside of my bezel.
The locket I had sent was to be set with a large heart shaped cabochon, held by a scalloped bezel.
I was more than a little shocked to find that they had taken a notch out of the centre front scallop. Not from the inside, or from the outside, but a snip from the edge.
I could get rid of the evidence and no-one would know but that hardly seemed the point.
Anyway, it's done. Our names are listed and there they stay. Years from now when Great Great grandchild Lemur goes to the Antiques Roadshow clutching a handful of bashed and blackened trinkets, Mr Expert will be able to tell little Lemur the names of the people who made these items.
Provenance my dear, provenance.