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Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attached

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Hi all,

I started lurking this forum when I was having our wedding bands custom designed, and now I find the need to create an account of my own to seek out your advice about some heirloom pieces that were just handed down to me.

I am going te be bringing them to the jeweler who did our wedding rings, but before I do I would love whatever input you have!

Both rings are sapphires. The larger one is an oval sapphire with diamond cluster halo (I think that's what it's called?). It was my great grandmothers ring and I'm told she wore it almost daily. My mom and aunt believe it pre-dates WWII. My mother had two of the diamonds replaced in the 80s and she tells me the diamond prongs are platinum and the rest of the setting is gold, although I don't know the k since the stamp has long worn off. The ring is about a size too small for me to wear. The sapphire has some surface abrasions and I'm hopeful they can be polished out. Obviously the prongs need some TLC.

My questions regarding this ring:
Do those abrasions look like they can be polished out?
Do you think the overall integrity of the ring can be maintained if the prongs are repaired?
Do you think it can be sized up? The metal looks quite thin to my eye.

The smaller ring was my mothers from 1973. I think the sapphire is an emerald cut. The metal is 14k WG. It's a very dainty ring and is missing one of the tiny side diamonds. This would also need to be sized up a size or so. Honestly, I think it looks a bit too dainty on my hand (I wear an 8.5 ring) and I'm considering having the stone reset, and possibly adding additional stones. My mom gave her blessing for this. But I don't know where to begin style-wise for that and would love some suggestions!

Thank you all so much!

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SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Additional photos (some of these show the abrasions better)

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img_13327.jpg

img_13328.jpg
 

distracts

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 11, 2011
Messages
5,495
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Pretty rings! How wonderful that you inherited them.

I'm a proponent of blingy pinky rings so I think you should have the "small" ring sized down to fit your pinky. :D

As for the cluster ring - I am sure someone can polish out the surface abrasions - whether that is someone recommended by your jeweler or by this forum, I don't know. It should be simple enough to resize, it doesn't look so thin as to be a problem, though if it is your jeweler will be able to reshank it. And I am sure the integrity will be able to be maintained with prong retipping. Please make sure, though, that they are working on the platinum prongs with platinum and not with white gold.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,367
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Oh, they are gorgeous!

Yes, the sapphire can be repolished. You can have it sent to a lapidary or have your jeweller take care of it.
Yes, the prongs can be rebuilt to make it safe to wear 24/7 again. Some look like it might have to be rebuilt rather than retip.
Yes, it can be sized up but if it needs to be sized up a lot, the bench will need to laser cut it.
 

DDOC

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 24, 2016
Messages
91
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

As others have mentioned, yes it can be re-polished.
I would look at removing the center stone and getting it re-polished.
New claws for the center stone.
Re-tipping the side stone claws. Use a jeweller who uses laser for this, and get them to do it before the Sapphire is re-set.
And finally, I personally would recommend a new heavier band made to your size. Again this work should be done before the Sapphire is re-set.

While it can be resized (probably a couple of sizes) with no real problems, the band has already deformed due to it's thickness and wear. Putting a piece with a couple of extra joins in the back (wether by solder or laser) will not improve overall strength and durability in the long term. If it is a piece you intend on restoring to keep it is best to spend the extra and get it done properly now while the Sapphire is out.

With your mothers ring I would look at a remake with adding a pair of suitable side stones to increase the main body of the ring, possibly using the small diamonds around the ends of the stone to further increase the size of the top into a semi halo.
This would be more in keeping with the proportions of your finger size and the size of ring it sounds like you want.
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Hi everyone!

I'm not sure if anyone is interested in an update to this, but today I took the sapphire/cluster ring to a jeweler in the city who specializes in antique/vintage jewelry restoration. He has 5 stars on Yelp and he's confident that he can get this ring back into great shape.

Some cool things I learned from him:

-10 of the diamonds are old mine cut. The other 2 were replaced by my mother in the 90s, so 1 of those is European cut and the other is a modern RB. I'm pretty excited to stumbled into ownership of some OMCs!
-He's very confident it's a Ceylon sapphire, approx 2 carats. It will get weighed officially when it comes out of the setting, but he says if I were to buy that stone today it would cost me easily $3500-4000. He said he had trouble finding anything wrong with it with his little handheld loupe thing and that it had "no color zoning" (this was a new term for me). "The color is just beautiful, beautiful."
-He thinks the ring is probably early 1900s, which would make sense. My great-grandmother was born in 1885 and I've been told she had the ring for all of her adult life.

Now, as for the work he recommends for it (these are notes from his quote):

-Replacing the modern RB diamond with an OMC. The RB does kind of stick out from the others. He says it's fine to keep the OEC in there since that one blends in fine.
-Remove and refacet the top of the sapphire. The bottom of the sapphire also has a few scuffs but he says they're not enough to warrant work on the bottom of the stone.
-Restore inner [four letter word I can't read]. Sorry, I don't remember the bit about this. If I could read it I'm sure it would trigger it!
-New platinum prongs (12) around the sapphire. These need to be completely rebuilt so he offered me the option of 18k gold or platinum (same price for either). I am going with platinum.
-Restore the 12 outer prongs. These are platinum, but someone somewhere along the line soldered a different metal on them.
-New 3/4 shank, 14k yellow gold. He will make the shank the same width around so it's not all wonky-looking after years and years of rezings amongst the women in my family.

All of this is going to cost me about $2000. I haven't OK'd the work yet (need to discuss with hubby first!) but I feel pretty confident in his ability. Any thoughts?
 

lambskin

Ideal_Rock
Premium
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Aug 22, 2012
Messages
2,274
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

What a wonderful project. Good luck.
 

boerumbiddy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2013
Messages
529
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

I hope you can post the jeweler who is going to do the work. He/she sounds like a pro. My go-to guy for restorations of stones and settings is about to retire.
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
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Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

boerumbiddy|1483603233|4112551 said:
I hope you can post the jeweler who is going to do the work. He/she sounds like a pro. My go-to guy for restorations of stones and settings is about to retire.
Once everything's done and I can see the final result, I will be happy to share his info! I'll certainly post an update with photos, too.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Messages
37,367
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Sounds like he knows what he is doing, from the task list. Good luck!
 

Stone Hunter

Ideal_Rock
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Messages
6,387
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Did you decide to get the work done? I'd love to see pictures of the ring once it's been refurbished.
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
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Mar 18, 2009
Messages
6,724
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

I hope this turned out well. Any updates?
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
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Messages
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Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Hi all! Yes, I did get the work done and picked up the ring today! It came out great, I'm so happy with it. Let me upload the photos from my phone real quick! You'll have to excuse the lack of a full hand shot. My middle finger is partially bandaged right now thanks to a wild kitchen knife.
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Here are the first few photos post-restoration work. Some in natural overcast light, some indoors.

ringrestore1.jpg

ringrestore2.jpg

ringrestore3.jpg
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

And here are a couple others, plus a before/after collage!

ringrestore4.jpg

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ringrestorebeforeafter.jpg
 

Crazie4Cuts

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 9, 2014
Messages
430
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Wow!! Really stunning restoration! I am sure you are so very happy with the work that he did. I think it looks great and please wear in good health and happiness.

Will you share the jeweler who did this outstanding work?

Side note, I understand that having the prongs in platinum for future wear and tear is preferred. If the sapphire does need polish/restoration in another 20 years, with platinum you will be able to remove the stone and not have to have the prongs redone. I don't think the prongs will need redoing, just the sapphire.

Best,
C4C
 

lovedogs

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 31, 2014
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Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

That looks amazing! The jeweler did an excellent job!
 

boerumbiddy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2013
Messages
529
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Yes, it looks like a brand-new ring. Please do share the name of your jeweler, as my guy keeps threatening to retire.
 

pregcurious

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 18, 2009
Messages
6,724
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Wow, that's a great restoration.
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Happy to share his info! His name is Hagop Matossian, of Bostonian Jewelers in Boston, MA.

He did a fantastic job. From the time I dropped it off until it was done, took about two weeks.
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,367
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

SparkleRookie|1486640042|4126445 said:
Happy to share his info! His name is Hagop Matossian, of Bostonian Jewelers in Boston, MA.
He did a fantastic job. From the time I dropped it off until it was done, took about two weeks.
Indeed! :appl:
 

txgreeneyes

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
402
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

The ring is gorgeous!!! I love sapphire halo rings. I'm so glad that it turned out great!
 

Keeliamira

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2016
Messages
485
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Wow! What a beautiful ring and wonderful restoration!! I'm so glad you were able to give your family heirloom such love and new life. Wear it in good health!
 

chatoyancy

Brilliant_Rock
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Joined
Dec 17, 2016
Messages
1,384
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Wow! Your jeweler did a great job! Your ring is beautiful.
 

ElizabethR

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 19, 2011
Messages
313
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Beautiful! That oval ring was my dream ring back in 1983. Your ring is gorgeous :appl:

What is happening with the other ring if you don't mind me asking?
 

SparkleRookie

Rough_Rock
Joined
Nov 3, 2016
Messages
20
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

ElizabethR said:
Beautiful! That oval ring was my dream ring back in 1983. Your ring is gorgeous :appl:

What is happening with the other ring if you don't mind me asking?
I'm leaning toward removing the stones from that one and doing alternating milgrain-edged east-west sapphires and kite diamonds for a band. First I have to have him pull out the stone and take its measurements, though, as I'm not sure if the stone size is more appropriate for my middle finger or ring finger. I'm definitely going to have him pull the stone prior to May, as I'd like to go in search of some matching sapphires at the gemstone show I'm going to in May. But the actual construction of the ring probably won't be until the second half of the year.
 

Alex T

Ideal_Rock
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4,988
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Blimey, this looks amazing! Your guy has completely breathed new life into it! And it's such a family treasure :love:
 

Stone Hunter

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 12, 2006
Messages
6,387
Re: Repairing/restoring heirloom sapphire rings - pics attac

Excellent! Restoration. :appl:
 
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