an item is engraved once it has had grooves or lines cut, carved, or etched into its hard surface. wood, stone, and metal are all materials commonly used in the engraving process. engraving has both functional and decorative applications. some of the industries that commonly make use of the engraving process include printing, jewelry making, and manufacturing.
engraving in printing
the printing industry commonly uses engraving. custom ordered wedding invitations, business cards, birth announcements, and personal stationary are commonly created using the engraving process. in fact, most of the paper money that is created these days uses the engraving process as well. the custom design and lettering for these items are engraved onto a metal die. during the printing process this engraved grooves of this die are filled with ink that is then pressed into the paper. this process gives you a very elegant raised lettering that can be felt by running your fingers over the paper.
one of the most popular forms of engraving these days is laser engraving. the designs and letters are cut into the surface of the material using a laser beam. one advantage of lasers is that they can easily reach into spots that would be difficult to reach with a hand tool. a computer program is often used to control the movements of the laser. some common uses for laser printing including etching a corporate logo and contact information onto marketing give away such as paperweights, key chains, and pens. one advantage of using engraving is that the image will not rub off over time. laser engraving also has a variety of industrial applications. good materials to use with laser
engraving include glass, leather, and plastic.
engraving in art
prior to the invention of photography engraving was a common way to illustrate newspapers and books. most of the pictures that can be seen in printed materials that were produced prior to the late 19th century were created using wood engraving. an engraver would remove the material from the block of wood following an image that had been drawn on the wood by an artist. another popular use for engraving in the art world was to reproduce paintings.
we can see examples of engraved jewelry on artifacts that are thousands of years old. jewelry that is given as a gift often includes an engraved message. special inscriptions or the name or initials of the jewelry owner are often put onto gold or silver pieces. often the grooves created by the engraving process are filled with enamel. you will also find beautiful images engraved onto a variety of gemstones, especially jade and ivory.
there are a number of shops that specialize in creating unique gift items that are engraved. short messages or initials are commonly engraved onto rings, bracelets, and other jewelry that is given as a gift. dedications are often engraved onto the backs of pendants and lockets. cuff links, flasks, money clips, and pocket watches are all gifts for men that are commonly engraved. other popular engraved gifts for women include key chains and trinket boxes. banks make a great engraved gift for children, and people of all ages and genders will appreciate a custom engraved photo frame.