Whatever your reason for re-sizing a ring – maybe you lost weight and the ring is now too big; the ring was a gift but the giver didn’t know your correct ring size; you bought it online and it’s the wrong size, or some entirely different reason – you need to know that some rings are not suitable for this process and therefore cannot and should not be resized, either up (made bigger) or down (made smaller).
Resizing Down to make the ring Smaller
For a jeweller or goldsmith re-sizing a ring is a fairly easy job if the ring has a plain shank (band). To make the ring smaller the goldsmith has only to cut out a portion of the band. He then brings the two pieces together to reshape the ring back into the circle. That done, the ends are soldered together. The ring is then smoothed and polished to cover the work done so it looks brand new in the right size. This method, however, does not work if your ring has an ornate design or gemstones all the way around the band. If the all-around design is the case, a complete new band will have to be made to cover the re-sizing process. If all-around gems is the case, they will have to be removed to maintain the balance in the ring’s setting. Similarly, gems half-way around in the channel design may have to be removed for the same reason – balancing the setting. Some ornate rings are made with an area for re-sizing but this is really designed to make the ring bigger rather than smaller.
Resizing Up to make the ring Larger
There are two ways to increase a ring’s size: (1) by stretching if the required increase is small; (2) cutting and inserting a new piece of metal if the ring has to be increased by a half size or more to increase the band to the desired size. The added piece will then be soldered into place to bring the ring back to a circular shape, then smoothed and polished so that the seams are virtually invisible. Here too, though, as in sizing smaller, problems arise if your ring is ornate or is adorned with gems all the way around or in the channel design of gems half way up the band because again the balance of the setting needs to be maintained, meaning you may have to change the setting. The goldsmith or jeweller will advise as to your options.
When Not to Resize
Antique or really old white gold rings do NOT lend themselves well to re-sizing because of possible discolouration of the metal, and while goldsmiths can often determine the cause of the discolouration, some may be impossible to discern. In a situation such as this the goldsmith will make every effort to correct the problem and you should discuss your options with him.
Also, as above, rings with gems all the way around cause problems for re-sizing because they may have to be removed to maintain the setting.
And those rings that have a pattern, e.g. a Celtic design or pattern or those that are adorned with writing such as a sentimental text or dates etc. can only be re-sized slightly so as not to distort the message on the band.
Whatever the instance to resize a ring – bigger or smaller – you really need to consult a goldsmith for advice and/or options. I strongly suggest you see Joe, the in-house goldsmith at LL Private Jewellers 604-684-6343 because he will steer you right and give you the best advice possible about re-sizing, whether to or not, so you can wear your ring again with pride and confidence.