Suzanne inherited this great big engagement ring from her mother years ago but it has been left in a drawer ever since. Although she loved the central cluster setting with the beautiful dark blue sapphire and grain set diamonds in a pretty flower shape, the 1970’s style band was really not her style.
It’s always such a shame when inherited pieces get forgotten about in dark jewellery boxes; it is totally understandable and reasonable to not share the exact same taste as previous generations and yet a lot of people feel immense reluctance and guilt in redesigning inherited jewellery. Most people like the idea of wearing the jewellery of their loved ones as a precious memento but often don’t because the style just doesn’t match their taste. Personally, I think if someone has left you a piece of jewellery, they have done so because they want you to enjoy it. Some people achieve this by selling it on and using the value to purchase something more to their taste and this can act as a reminder of their lost loved one just as much as wearing the original piece. However, if you would prefer to keep the stones and metal that your loved one wore, redesign is a great option. I don’t think people should feel bad for reutilising the existing stones and metal into something more suitable; in this way, you can keep the original materials and treasure their history in a new form. I think it can bring great comfort to be able to touch, wear and look at the same stones and metal you know your loved one once wore and cherished.
So that Suzanne could enjoy her inheritance, we discussed the various ways in which the stones could be reused in a totally new and modern design but we decided that the setting was just too pretty to alter. Therefore we decided to simply cut it free from the heavy retro band and attach a pendant fitting. While we were at it, we re-tipped the claws of the sapphire setting to ensure it has the longevity to last a lifetime.
The transformation from heavy and bulky ring to this feminine and delicate pendant is astounding; Suzanne now has a pendant she could wear everyday or save for special occasions. But most importantly, she can wear it in tribute to her mother and enjoy the comfort that brings.
This was a real ‘light-touch’ redesign and Suzanne was pleased to receive the yellow gold band back as well as her new pendant. She now has the option in the future to melt down the gold to produce a new piece of jewellery or pass it on to her two sons so they could potentially use the gold in a special piece of jewellery.
Do you have a piece of inherited jewellery that you’d love to wear but in a new design that honours your loved one whilst also being true to your own unique style? I’d love to hear your redesign stories in the comments below.