3 Tips for Incorporating Heirloom Pieces into New Jewelry

Receiving a cherished heirloom from a family member is such a sweet gift.

Whether it’s your grandmother’s wedding ring, a great-grandfather’s cufflinks, or the necklace your mother wore when she met your father, each piece comes with its share of memories.

As times change, so do styles. And while you may be grateful to have received such a sentimental part of your family history, the piece may not be quite “you.” Luckily, technology has come a long way, and many heirloom pieces can be reinvented into something new that you will want to wear.

Here are some tips for incorporating your heirloom piece into new jewelry:

Be Considerate

If you inherited your heirloom, or purchased one at an estate sale, you don’t need to worry about this part. However, if you were given an heirloom piece by a living relative, it is wise to be considerate.

The gift-giver may have intended for you to keep the piece intact, as-is, and could be upset by a sudden change. The heirloom may have personal meaning to the previous owner, and it is important to keep that in mind.

Discuss with your relative what you would like to do. Explain that you want to honor the memories and ancestry attached to the piece while making it wearable for you. If you think it would help, include the giver in the design process so you can create a piece that will make you both happy. Don’t forget to take a picture of the heirloom for posterity!

Gather Inspiration

Next is the fun part: designing your new piece!

Gather inspiration from magazines and websites (such as Pinterest) and keep them all in one place that will be easy to access later. Decide on what type of jewelry you would like to create with your heirloom.

Some options include:

  • Stone from a ring turned into a pendant, or vice versa
  • Turn the diamonds in a bracelet into a pair of earrings
  • Update a ring with a single diamond by adding other precious gems in a more modern setting
  • Change the metal for a clean look more suited to your taste
  • Take the original stones and arrange them into a new setting
  • If you have a string of pearls, they can be restrung to a new length or blended with other pearls for a unique look
  • Replace damaged or missing stones with new

Talk to a Jeweler

Once you think you have settled on what you want, it’s time to bring your ideas to a jeweler. Bring your inspiration pictures as well as the heirloom piece.

The jeweler should be able to bring your ideas to life and draw up a visual of what the finished piece will look like.

After a couple weeks, you will be able to take your finished piece home to enjoy for years to come and eventually pass it down to the next generation.

Custom Jewelry Design in Frederick, MD

Turn your heirloom treasure into a piece you can enjoy for years to come!

At Gold Thumb Jewelry, we use computer-aided design to bring your vision to life. Our jewelers have decades of experience creating custom pieces, and all of our design work is done completely in-house. Contact us today for a consultation!



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