FAQ

How does the process work?  What will I have to do if I wish to order something?
Can you take the prints for me? Do you do parties?
I'm not very good at arty/crafty stuff - is it quick and easy to take the prints?
What happens if I just can't take the print and it's a real mess?
I have some footprints/handprints on paper.  Can I use them?
I have prints on a mug/plate/fabric.  Can I use them?
I have some drawings that my children did, that I wish to have transferred onto a pendant.  What do I do?
Can you make pieces using the paw prints of my dog or cat?
I have an ultra-sound baby scan image - can you transfer that onto a silver charm?
I have 2 children and would like both their prints incorporated on a piece.  Can I do this?
Do you have suggestions for pieces incorporating more than 2 children?
What is a double-sided charm? 
Are the products used for impressions and prints safe to use on young children?
What is the optimal age for taking prints?  Can I take prints of my newborn baby and my husband/grandma?
How do I know if the print is good enough or not?
What are the advantages of taking the fingerprints in the moulding material, versus directly onto the silver clay, which some companies do?
Is it possible to re-order using the same impressions/prints?
How long does it take to get my finished product?
What personalisation of my pieces is possible?
Do you do bespoke or special commission pieces?
How do I care for my products?
Are the products you make silver or silver plate and what is the difference between fine and sterling silver?
You used to make items in gold, why don't you do so anymore?
How do you guarantee the quality of your products?
What are your Payment Methods?
Tell me a bit about PastelPrint
Why are some items hallmarked and others not?
How do you transfer the prints from either the mould or the paper to the silver?
Where can we purchase your products, other than through your website?
What if I wish to set up my own fingerprint jewellery business?


Connor & William is the new trading name for PastelPrint.  This change of branding came about in July 2017, with nothing more than the name of the business and an updated website being different.  All items are still made by Allison in the same way, in the same studio!  You may find reference to PastelPrint in our  literature, Trading Terms or General Information, but both brand names still refer to the same business.  The C&W brand has been used for several years to identify items that are not Family/Keepsake pieces and the domain names for PastelPrint and Connor & William will remain relevant and each one will direct you to the current website.


How does the process work?  What will I have to do if I wish to order something?

It's very simple!  Once we receive your order - be it via our website or over the phone - we will mail you a very easy to use kit, so that you can take the prints.  These are then returned to us in the stamped envelope provided and we will do the rest!  The hard part is deciding what you want!  But we are always on hand to offer advice, so please give us a call if you are in any doubt about anything!


Can you take the prints for me? Do you do parties?

If you are local to us (Twickenham, Richmond upon Thames UK), you are welcome to come and see us and we can take the prints for you.  Alternatively you can arrange a coffee morning and invite a few friends around and we can come to you. Please call us if you are interested in hosting a coffee morning for friends.

I'm afraid that if you are not local, prints must be done via mail order - but don't worry.... it's easy to do and we are always on hand to offer tips and advice if you struggle!


I'm not very good at arty/crafty stuff - is it quick and easy to take the prints?

The Kits are very easy to use, come with full instructions and pictures, should take no more than a few minutes to do and can even be done when your child is sleeping. The impression kit contains enough moulding putty to make at least 2 fingerprints - the best print will be used to make your piece of jewellery.  With the inkless wipe system, you can take prints of babies from birth without too much difficulty or distress to the child. Just follow the instructions with the kit and let us know how old your baby is when ordering so we can give you any extra tips!  Don't worry about smudges and overprints as we will edit them out and ensure that we get a good image to transfer onto the silver.
You will receive enough material to have several attempts at taking the prints of all children you are ordering pieces for and if what you send us is not suitable for use, we will always offer additional advice and send you a new kit.


What happens if I just can't take the print and it's a real mess?

Well, firstly, the kits are really easy to use and it's mess-free!  If you are really struggling because you have a wriggly child, we are always happy to send you another kit and offer some advice.  We seldom receive prints we can't use and if we do, we always send new kits out to our customers.  It is important that we get a good print to transfer onto the silver, rather than an unrecognisable dent.  This is what makes our product stand out from our competitors!


I have some footprints/handprints on paper.  Can I use them?

Yes of course - when you place your order, just email us a jpeg of the prints - scanned copy is best, not a photograph. Prints taken with ink or inkless paper work best, but we can work from prints taken in paint - these don't usually show up detailed lines though, but we will advise you of suitability of prints when you email them to us.  Please ensure that you provide us with your order number when doing so, so that we can match up your prints to your order.


I have prints on a mug/plate/fabric.  Can I use them?

Yes, if the print is clear enough and not distorted, we should be able to use them.  Scanned copies can be emailed to us before you place an order and we can advise if we can use them.


I have some drawings that my children did, that I wish to have transferred onto a pendant.  What do I do?

No matter how old or new the artwork is, if it's special to you, send it to us and we will see if it is suitable to transfer onto the silver.  We don't ask for the originals, but an A4 size photocopy if you are mailing it, or you can scan and email us a jpeg.  Simple drawings do work best, but we have worked with all sorts - even first paint splodges!!


Can you make pieces using the paw prints of my dog or cat?
Yes, we often make charms for customers with pets.  We can make any of our Little Hand and Footprint pieces, even the Pandora-style bead.  If you don't have prints, then we will send you a kit with inkless wipes and paper so that you can take the prints of your pet pooch or kitty.  Just order any item from the hand/footprint ranges and we will make up the pieces for you.  We can also make a dog-tag to attach to the collar of your cat or dog - we can shape this as either a bone-shape, or an oval-shape and include a name and phone number on it.  Recently we made one for a Rottweiler - the owner wanted "BIG DOG" on the front of a large bone-shaped tag! 

I have an ultra-sound baby scan image - can you transfer that onto a silver charm?
Yes, absolutely.  We have had very good results - please have a look in our Baby Scan category for details of products we offer.  All you need to do is send us a jpeg or good photocopy of the image and we will do the rest.

I have 2 children and would like both their prints incorporated on a piece.  Can I do this?

Yes of course.  There are many variations and options. If you order cufflinks we can use the prints of 2 children, one on each cufflink.  We offer double-sided charms, whereby there is a print on either side of a charm.  With pendant or keyring size charms we can put 2 prints on the same side of the piece as well.  When you choose your items, you should find that you have a drop-down box, which will indicate whether or not we can put 1 or 2 prints on a piece for you. 

Do you have suggestions for pieces incorporating more than 2 children?

Yes, do have a look at our bracelet and cluster necklace options.  We can also make triple pendants with fingerprints or handprints/footprints.  If you need advice, do ask!


What is a double-sided charm? 

We have devised a way of putting a print on both sides of a charm.  The method we use does not compromise the depth of the print, and charm is not much thicker than our regular charms. So if you would prefer to have one charm, rather than two, just select the option for double-sided when you order your pieces.  Please note that double-sided doesn't mean just text on the back of the charm - we add this for you at no extra charge, so if you are having just a print on the front with name, we will add age or DOB at the back if you wish.  Longer text messages can be put on the back of larger pieces we supply.


Are the products used for impressions and prints safe to use on young children?
It took us a long time to find products suitable for our mail order kits which are safe and easy to use with young children.  The moulding material for fingerprints is non-toxic, but it is advised that you do not allow small children to play with it, as it is a potential choking hazard. It is very soft and will not bruise fingers of children or young babies when you take the print.   We have not experienced problems with skin irritations from the moulding material - the process of taking the print is very quick and the finger is not in contact with the moulding material for more than 2 or 3 seconds.

The inkless wipes are used in maternity hospitals and for general fingerprinting and although they are non-toxic and harmless to your baby or child, we recommend that you wash hands and feet after using them.

Disclaimer: To date we have had no problems re skin irritations with products that we use, but you are solely responsible for making the decision to use these on your children's hands or feet.


What is the optimal age for taking prints?  Can I take prints of my newborn baby and my husband/grandma?

There is no optimal age we have found, as each person's print is totally unique and the clarity of it varies from person to person, young to old.

In our experience there is no hard and fast rule about how old a child must be before you see their fingerprint lines - We've had fabulous results from babies as young as 3 weeks, where every line was visible and then found that children as old as 3 yrs may still not have a very defined print. Each print is unique and each child is different. In most cases there are always a few lines visible and, of course, there is the impression of the child's finger.

We can also take adult prints - although we suggest using the small finger for fingerprint jewellery.  Again with adults the clarity of the fingerprint varies person to person and sometimes with elderly people, their skin is quite thin and therefore the fingerprints can sometimes be quite faint.  In respect of Hand/Foot Jewellery, there is no age limit - even adult prints can be shrunk down to fit on the charms.  In recent experience we have found that handprints work better than fingerprints on some adults, especially the elderly.


How do I know if the print is good enough or not?

The kits come with clear instructions and pictures, so it should be easy to make a comparison with your print and the pictures.  If you can see clear lines in the fingerprint mould, then they will show up on the silver.  If however the impression is quite smooth with only faint lines, this is how it will transfer onto the silver.  Every print we receive is unique and the clarity of the prints vary from person to person. 

Likewise with hand/footprints - if the print you have shows strong lines, they should show up on the silver.  If you are unsure about your prints, please let us know and we can advise you of the expected end result.  It is important to us that you are happy with the end result and it is what you expect.


What are the advantages of taking the fingerprints in the moulding material, versus directly onto the silver clay, which some companies do?
Firstly and most importantly, by using the moulding material, we can reach more customers by mail order, so more people benefit from receiving our beautiful jewellery!  The prints can be done in the comfort of your home and at a time convenient to you and then simply sent back to us.
Our moulding material is superior quality and picks up all the fine lines on the finger.  It is also soft and "gives" when you push your finger into it, resulting in a very attractive shape which we can transfer onto the silver.  The silver clay can be quite hard and when pushing a soft object like a finger into it, the resulting print is often not concave, but more convex, often shallower or flatter, showing less detail than we would achieve with our method.

We can also make several items from one impression.  Before we started using the moulding material we had a customer who wanted 8 identical charms.  It was an impossible task to try and keep a wriggly child still while we effectively had to make 8 charms in front of her.  It took ages, the child got irritable and it was at that point when we realised we had to find a different method.  As we also have very high standards, if at any point during the process of making the item we are unhappy with it, we can easily reuse the moulds to make the piece from scratch.  Again, with the clay method, the customer and child have to be seen again which is not always convenient.

We totally appreciate the sentiment around your child's finger actually touching the silver and making the impression in it and it is totally a personal choice as to whether you go with that, or use a mould.  If you want a good result, then there is only one way in our opinion.... and we have several customers who will agree with us!

Is it possible to re-order using the same impressions/prints?
Yes.  We often have customers who are happy with their items, but wish to order additional pieces a few months later.  We can use the prints we have on file for the new order.  We currently have archived all prints from the time we started trading, but if your order was over a year ago, we need to ensure that the prints are able to be located and that they are suitable to use again. Of course you don't have to reuse old prints and we are always happy to send you a new kit so that you can take updated prints. 

How long does it take to get my finished product?
We here at PastelPrint pride ourselves in producing items made to the highest possible standard and this does take time.  All our items are hand-crafted and hand-finished and each piece is unique. Silver fingerprint items will generally take about 10-14 days to be completed and returned to you, but if you need them done quicker, please do ask. Other items eg. hand/feet/artwork can take up to 4 weeks to produce given the extra processes involved. Naturally during busy periods, eg Christmas, it may take longer to produce items due to volume of orders received. It's always helpful if you state the date you require your items on your order form and we will do our best to work towards that.

What personalisation of my pieces is possible?
PastelPrint has a unique personalisation font which gives a very neat and professional finish to your special pieces.
Personalisation can be specified on the order form which you return with your impressions or prints and is included in the price of all pieces produced. By default, we will use the lower case casual font which is shown in most of the images on this website. If you choose to have just initials on your piece, we are also able to use capital letters but please note that we cannot use both capital and lower case letters together, as they are totally different fonts and sizes i.e. no capital letters for names. Please indicate very clearly on your order form if you wish us to use capital letters - by just writing the names in capital letters is not enough indication as a number of people use capital letter handwriting for clarity- please write us a note in the comments box!

Usually names are stamped on the front of the piece next to the print impression, but this can be done on the back if you so choose and sometimes we may need to use our discretion as to whether personalisation goes on the front or the back of the piece eg space limitations, the look of the piece etc. On some pieces age/DOB or short messages can be stamped around the edge on the back - the larger the piece the more information can fit on. We don't have limits to the length of names that will fit on pieces as it varies piece to piece and depends on whether the name contains fat or thin letters, but if you are unsure because of either a long name or large fingers and you want small pieces, please ask what may be possible! Generally though, we believe we can get longer names on our pieces than those companies offering hand-engraving only.

Please note that we are unable to stamp text where the silver is thin i.e. across the backs of prints.  We use the edges where we can and thus there are limits as to what we can put on a piece!

Certain pieces are hand-engraved eg Footprint beads, cut-out hand/footprint charms etc. 


Do you do bespoke or special commission pieces?

Absolutely - just ask!! If you have any ideas for a special piece, please let us know. We try to be very flexible and are happy to discuss and make suggestions. We are passionate about our products and making jewellery and have made many bespoke pieces for customers.... indeed, all our products are really bespoke and personalised if you come to think about it!!


How do I care for my products?

All our hand-made pieces are pure silver 999.  Fittings and findings are Sterling silver 925.
Silver jewellery can be cleaned with an anti-tarnish/impregnated polishing cloth and you should clean or polish the print area gently, so as to preserve it and also not remove too much of the antiquing, which helps to highlight print detail.  So, avoid using any liquid cleaners, as it may remove the antiquing. Do remove your jewellery when using household cleaners, especially bleach and bathroom cleaners, as this may mark and ruin your fine and sterling silver. Regularly check all findings and fittings for wear and tear and do remember that all jewellery can break, so it needs to be handled and worn with care.

If you wish to be environmentally friendly and clean your silver with natural products, you can use toothpaste which has baking soda in it - further information about this can be found on this link http://blog.elementalsilver.com/2008/04/10/eco-friendly-silver-jewelry-cleaner-toothpaste/

In VERY rare cases skin acidity may cause your fine silver piece to discolour. If this happens, please contact us to discuss options for restoring the piece - in some cases the discolouration can be very stubborn and you may need specialist products to clean it. Generally though you should find that by wearing your jewellery and regularly rubbing it with a jewellery cloth, it should prevent any discolouration or tarnishing. We do sell Silver Polishing Cloths on our website - we use them ourselves and they are highly recommended!


Are the products you make silver or silver plate and what is the difference between fine and sterling silver?
Sterling silver is 92.5% pure silver, mixed with 7.5% alloy, normally copper, which gives sterling silver it's strength and hardness.
Pure or Fine silver is 99.9% pure silver - just like 24ct gold.

All our handmade pieces are fine silver, which is the purest silver you can get.  We use only Sterling Silver for all our fittings and findings.
Pure silver by it's nature is much softer than sterling silver and will age and lose its high shine finish much faster than sterling silver would.  Items such as bracelet charms and keyrings do take more bumps and knocks than other jewellery items, so do consider this when choosing your special pieces. 

You used to make items in gold, why don't you do so anymore?

As everyone is aware, the price of gold has sky-rocketed and it just became far too expensive to make charms in pure gold. 
We can however send your silver charms away to be gold-plated - they will then be known as Vermeil.  To be considered vermeil, the gold must be at least 10 carat (42%) and be at least 2.5 microns thick..  We suggest 5 micron thickness, which should give you about 5 years normal wear before it needs replating.  Other fingerprint jewellery companies also offer this service, but it is unlikely that they plate to the same thickness as we do.  Normally items are plated to 1.5 or 2 microns, which wears off very quickly if the item is regularly worn.  As the old saying suggests....you get what you pay for!


How do you guarantee the quality of your products?

All items are made by either myself, Allison, or staff that I have personally trained and who work alongside me in the studio.  I have very strict and high standards and it is very important for me to have customers who are happy with their purchases - from initial enquiry, to receipt of the finished item, we pride ourselves at providing a high level of service and product.  By choosing a PastelPrint item you can be assured that the greatest care will be taken in ensuring you are 100% happy with the item purchased. A lot of our business is through word of mouth, so if you are happy with your items, please let your friends and family know where to find us!  Have a look through our customer testimonials ... we are exceptionally proud of our customer feedback and grateful to everyone who has taken the time to write to us and tell us how happy they are with their pieces and the service we have provided.

We have also recently been accredited by and become members of the Guild of Master Craftsmen, which endorses our high standards, quality of workmanship and excellent customer service.


What are your Payment Methods?

Orders through the website are processed through SagePay.  If you order in person, we can take payment via debit/credit card, cheque or cash.  We can also accept debit/credit cards, cheques and postal orders for orders placed over the phone.  PayPal is also an option for payment, but please note that we charge an additional 5% to cover commission and admin if you choose this method of payment.


Tell me a bit about PastelPrint
We have been trading since 2006, with our website going live early in 2007.  Initially we only took local orders, but there was a growing demand for our products from around the country, so we did lots of research and eventually found the perfect products for our mail order fingerprint kits.  A year later, after many enquiries by parents who had sadly lost babies and wanted to know whether we could use the footprints taken at the hospital, we eventually developed a method that will allow us to transfer paper prints onto the silver.  The process for doing this was so new and innovative and we were very excited to be one of the first companies to launch our range of handprint/footprint jewellery.  We are repeatedly told by our customers that the quality of these products that we produce far exceeds that of any of our competitors and we are very proud of this. 
We are innovative and keep up with fashion trends, so frequently you will see new products on our site and little extra bits and pieces to add to your necklaces and bracelets - just to personalise them even more and make them a bit more special.  Our Signature cluster necklace is a popular choice and our customers love to bling them up by adding the Swarovski crystals, pearls and other semi-precious beads that we now stock.  We were also the first company to offer Footprint beads, suitable for wearing with the ever popular Pandora-style bracelets and necklaces and because of its popularity, we now stock a range of coloured beads, so that you can purchase complete necklaces and bracelets from us. 
Many of our competitors copy our products, but we are confident that our products are superior and of excellent quality.  So much so, in March 2011 we were elected as members of the Guild of Master Craftsmen, which reinforces our commitment to providing a high level of product and service to our customers.


Why are some items hallmarked and others not?
Current legislation states that silver items that weigh less than 7.78 grams need not be hallmarked. On average, charms, pendants and cufflinks produced for fingerprinting weigh less than this and therefore need not be marked. All fittings/findings are sterling silver and charms/pieces produced by PastelPrint are all fine silver 999.
At present, if you require an item to be hallmarked for personal reasons, we can sent it off to the Assay office for you.  Please be aware that this would delay delivery dates of completed items and incur an additional charge of £25 per order. Each Hallmark is 0.5mm and items will be marked with my maker's mark, London Assay Office (Leopard), Fineness and Year, on the back of the item.

How do you transfer the prints from either the mould or the paper to the silver?
As we am sure you will understand, we cannot divulge this information freely - all our processes and the products we use are our intellectual property. We spent many months searching for the perfect products to use and then perfecting the techniques that we use. Whether they are the same as our competitors or different, we could not say, as we have found our own methods of transferring the various types of prints and images and getting a good result. Please do not ask, as we do not wish to offend - our methods, techniques and all products we use are our trade secret.


Where can we purchase your products, other than through your website?
PastelPrint is not part of any other fingerprint franchise business, but is independently run, hence offering you more possibilities for bespoke and personalised items. You can only buy PastelPrint items from this website and 2 other websites, which we have very carefully chosen to represent our Brand.  Regrettably there are a few dishonest people out there, who are have in the past tried to use images of our products and text verbatim from our website to promote or start-up their businesses. If you are unsure about whether the item is a genuine PastelPrint item or not, the best solution is to order directly from us. 

What if I wish to set up my own fingerprint jewellery business?
There are many companies out there offering courses on how to make this type of jewellery and thus there are many companies offering similar products to us.  We frequently get calls from "customers" who fish for information from us and this is not only dishonest, but also not very good business ethics.  We pride ourselves in having researched and tested our own methods without stealing IP from other competitors.   If it is your intention to purchase from us in order to gain information on our process, methods, advertising materials, packaging etc., so that you can start your own fingerprint jewellery business, then we would ask you to refrain from doing so. To use our text, images or products to promote your business is not only confusing, misleading, deceptive to potential customers and blatant infringement of copyright and intellectual property, but also potentially damaging to the reputation and goodwill that PastelPrint has built up over the years. For further information on copyright protection and use of this website, please refer to the T&C page.
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