We know that losing stones from your ring, or having it bend can be very distressing. Especially if it’s your first piece of fine jewelry. My husband and I have written this blog to help you understand why this sometimes happens. Just like a car, rings require routine maintenance, and sometimes if they get into an accident, they require professional help. We’re always here to help keep your fine jewelry in top condition!
Read on to see pictures, and learn about the most common things that happen to rings. Remember, with Laurie Sarah Designs, you always have our Lifetime Care Plan to help!
But before we do, let’s address two elephants in the room. Here are two common concerns from the person who looses a stone:
BUT I THOUGHT I WOULD NEVER LOSE A STONE! DOES THAT MEAN MY RING IS NOT WELL MADE?
Not necessarily. A lot of it has to do with the style of ring you chose. It’s very popular today for engagement rings in particular to be “as thin and dainty as possible”. That’s fine, just know that the thinner your design, the easier it is for the gold to bend. The smaller the stones in your ring, the tinier the little gold prongs will be holding your gems. So take that into consideration when buying your ring. We offer thinner designs and thicker designs, because we know many people are looking for a variety of designs. If you want dainty, great – just know that you’ll need to be much more careful with it than someone who chooses a thicker style. If, after wearing your ring for a while, you find that you chose a ring that is daintier than your life-style matches up with, we can work with you on a solution. We had one bride who chose a ring with a very high, thin head. But because she worked with pre-schoolers in a colder climate, she found that she kept bending her ring as she took off wiggly children’s coats. We helped her redesign her ring to better fit her life-style.
I ONLY HAD MY RING A VERY SHORT TIME AND I’VE ALREADY LOST A STONE! DOES THAT MEAN MY RING IS NOT WELL MADE?
Again, no. It’s not how long you’ve had your ring, but when it was bent or damaged. Just like you can drive a car off the lot right after you get it and get into an accident the next day, if the day after you have your ring you bang it on something, that is what loosens stones, not how long you’ve had it.
NOW TO ANSWER THE 4 MOST COMMON REASONS STONES ARE LOST AND RINGS BEND:
1. SOMEHOW THE RING GOT BENT.
This can happen slowly over time. Many times, people are surprised that their ring bent as they feel they were very careful. But it can happen gradually (we have a friend who vigorously grips her steering wheel while she drives – her rings eventually become oval in shape), or it can happen all at once. I bent one of my rings once when I slammed it against the dryer door while taking laundry out of the dryer.
What happens when the ring bends? It widens the space between the tiny little prongs that hold the stones. This can cause them to fall out. If you lost stones on the side of your ring (probably about the place where it goes in between your fingers), check your ring – has it taken on an oval shape? Notice right where it bends the most is probably where you lost the stone. Solution? Send it back to us. We’ll gently make it circular again, reset the stone and it’s all fixed up again!
BUT WHY DO RINGS AND PRONGS BEND?
To understand this, you need to understand gold. In order for metal to be carefully and gently pushed up against stones to hold them in place, it must be just soft enough to mold itself around each little stone. Gold is the perfect choice for this. While it is extremely strong, it is also just soft enough to put pressure on and not shatter the little gems it’s holding. So while it’s strong, continued bumps or pressure, or one good hit can cause it to bend just enough to lose a stone.
2. STONES LOST AROUND THE CENTER STONE
Another common place to lose stones is in the halo around the center stone. Why? Because this is the area of the ring that is probably most bumped. Think about every time your ring comes in contact with a surface. It is most likely the part around your center stone.
BUT I DON’T HAVE A HALO. WHY DID MY CENTER STONE BECOME LOSE OR FALL OUT?
Again, it’s about understanding gold. If you catch the prong that holds the center stone of your ring on something (the most common times this happens is pulling off your sweater, or putting your hand into your pants pocket) it can bend. If it bends just a little, it will still hold your center stone, but you will hear it wiggle. Every once in a while, check to see if your center stone is loose. Bring your ring up to your ear and wiggle it back and forth. Do you hear a clicking sound? Your center stone is loose. Stop wearing the ring immediately and have the prongs tightened.
If you center stone falls out completely, it means one or more prongs holding it were bent quite a bit, causing it to fall out. The prongs may need to be repaired or rebuilt.
#3 ETERNITY BANDS
I have written a great blog about the pros and cons of eternity rings (rings where the stones go all the way around the ring). You can read it here. The bottom line, the more the little prongs get bumped that hold your stones, the more likely they will bend and you’ll lose a stone. Because eternity bands have stones where you’re always bumping and gripping, know that you’ll just need to be a little more careful. No worries if you lose one once in a while. We’ll replace it!
#4 THE STONE THAT FELL WAS DAMAGED
The fourth most common reason for losing a stone is that the stone itself was damaged. This is rarely the case with diamonds as they are extremely durable. It’s more likely to happen with colored gemstones. Very fragile stones like emeralds and opal can easily become chipped when they bump on the table etc. Once they become chipped, they can fall. Don’t worry, we’ll help you replace them.