Author Topic: Jewelry Maintenance  (Read 22017 times)

Offline diamondjunkie

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Jewelry Maintenance
« on: September 25, 2007, 11:52:52 AM »
I wanted to start this thread so that we all have somewhere to discuss maintenance issues and such.  I know I am not talking to the average jewelry buyer so many of you will be clued into this stuff but I wanted to put it out there anyway.

Just as you would never buy a luxury car in the belief that you would never have to service it, jewelry also needs a regular ‘service’.  Pieces should be checked regularly for any wear on the metal and loose/chipped stones.  Often, this is something that is easy enough done at home but you do need to be careful.  Before you check for loose stones, clean the piece with a soft toothbrush and liquid soap, making sure to get to the back of the piece/stones too.  Make sure you do this in a container with warm water – NOT OVER A SINK as you could easily lose stones down the drain.  Using a bowl means that any stones loose enough to fall out can be found at the bottom of the bowl.

You need to clean the piece first because sometimes dirt can prevent you from identifying problems.

Once the piece is clean, use a pair of pointed tweezers to gently push every stone and watch for any signs of movement.  Some styles are known for loosening up easier than others and we will get into that in another posting.  If you are concerned about a tiny melee, you can mark it with a child’s washable marker for when you need to take it into your jeweler (not that they shouldn't check every stone for you anyway) or to send it back to us.  With larger stones, you may be able to identify if something is loose by holding the ring up to your ear and shaking it – if it rattles, you have a stone that needs tightening.

If you have ANY loose stones, DO NOT use a high powered steam cleaner on the piece!  Unless you really want to blast the stones clean out of the setting!

So you’ve checked everything and you have no loose stones.  Now what?  Take a look over the setting itself.  Look at the prongs: are the tips worn thin?  Have the prongs moved at all?   Do they all still have full contact with the stone?  Any knocks/dings to the setting itself?  Also look to see if any of the stones are chipped and in need of replacement.

One other important thing to remember: if you ever drop a piece, inspect it immediately for damage/loose stones – just as you wouldn’t drive a car further than the nearest garage after an accident to have it checked over for road-worthiness, so it is with your jewelry.

Of course, we take great care and pride in our pieces and we won’t send out a piece if it’s not up to our standard, but no piece is infallible.  We are here to help with any issues you may have – just let us know!

Offline Diamondsbylauren

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2007, 12:07:01 PM »
Great thread DJ- A lot of things I would not have thought of!

one piece of advice I always give is to avoid putting on hand creme when wearing your diamonds- it's easier to clean them if they are no coated in lotion...hehehe


Another point which is important: The roundness of a ring's shank ( the bottom part) has a lot to do with the integrity of the prongs on top.
If your ring is bent on the bottom, stones may very well come loose.
We make our rings pretty heavy on the bottom for this reason. This is something that is pretty easy to spot- a bent ring.


Many of our rings have the "Three Stone Design". In these cases, it's pretty difficult to knock a stone out of the setting.
In the past few years we've sold hundreds of "halo" rings- these feature pave, or "micro-setting"
Although most have been heavily worn with NO problems- remember that the small stones are far easier to dislodge...and that's true no matter how much we bolster the ring.

If you have a DBL halo., and ever lost one of the little micro- set diamond, we'll replace it for free
David
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Offline evilmailjeep

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2007, 12:59:09 PM »
Even bezel settings do need checked regularly...most folks who choose bezel settings do so because they have a tendency to be hard on their hands and rings, and yes, with all the knocking about, a bezel set stone can come loose too.

Offline diamondjunkie

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2007, 01:07:52 PM »
Even bezel settings do need checked regularly...most folks who choose bezel settings do so because they have a tendency to be hard on their hands and rings, and yes, with all the knocking about, a bezel set stone can come loose too.

Absolutely EMJ. 

Great point about hand lotion, David.  I was also going to point out that you should not wear your jewelry when you put on hairspray either - that stuff builds up slowly on your pieces and really dulls them down.  Perfume may well not do your jewelry any good either and may in fact be harmful to more delicate items such as pearls.

Talking of pearls, if you have studs, don't get them wet.  Many pearl studs are set on a post into a small drilled hole and are held on with epoxy.  Get them wet and they can become loose.

There is so much more that can be said and I hope to start new threads for specific gemstones/jewelry styles over the next few weeks.

Offline BigRed

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2007, 02:51:25 PM »
Great thread DJ! Good to know about the halo advice and info! Thank you!
DBL's One and only Rose Gold Queen!!!!!

Offline WM

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2007, 05:02:33 PM »
For the jewelry obsessed, this thread is a must.

Offline BigRed

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2007, 05:38:00 PM »
I am sending my ring back to the big man tomorrow! Is there anything I can soak the ring in to get the film out from under the setting? It is making the stone appear to have a cloud, the antique setting won't allow me to get a brush or anything even near it! I don't want to die from embarrassment(sp?)   :tard:  at how filthy it is! I promise that when I get my halo I will never put on lotion again with my ring on!  :cross:
DBL's One and only Rose Gold Queen!!!!!

Offline diamondjunkie

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2007, 05:43:14 PM »
Have you tried the hot vinegar BR?  I know some of the girls have had great results with a denture cleaner.  DiamLady is the one to ask about that.  Sanchica also had a great tip about using a teeny dental brush to get in those hard to reach places.  You know what this is all telling me?  Dentists must have the cleanest jewelry ever!   ;D

Offline BigRed

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #8 on: September 25, 2007, 05:49:12 PM »
I will try hot vinegar, thanks DJ! Not even dentist tools could get in here, well it could in the very front, but the cloud is on the right rear of the stone and there is NO way to reach it!
DBL's One and only Rose Gold Queen!!!!!

Offline GracefulLion

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #9 on: September 25, 2007, 05:52:37 PM »
Can anyone give me good ideas for cleaning watches with diamonds?  I obviously cannot soak it in anything, and I have been too nervous to even use cotton swabs.  Anyone else with a watch like this and tips to share?


Offline diamondjunkie

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2007, 05:58:49 PM »
Well you could soak it if you were comfortable removing the movement.......does the back just pop off?  If you are not comfortable taking the movement out, some jewelers have watchmakers on site and would probably be happy to remove the movement and clean it for you.  I hasten to add here that a 'watchmaker' here does not mean a clerk who can change a battery for you!  You would be so much better served letting a qualified watch repair-person do it.

Offline DiamondLady

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2007, 06:15:20 PM »
GL, Is it water proof? Most good watches are to a certain degree. I have one that is stainless steel with diamonds on the dial and I have worn it while doing dishes and showering. I believe it is water proof or water resistant (whatever they call it) to about 100m. Which means I could probably go swimming in it. That type should be able to be soaked like you would clean any other jewelry.

If it's not able to get wet.. well then, I don't know.  Look at the back of the case and see if it is marked for a water resistant depth.
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Offline GracefulLion

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2007, 06:19:30 PM »
It does not say in the back, but I know I have the paperwork buried somewhere.  I believe it is water resistant.  I just get so nervous about messing it.  I take it off when I get close to water!  Maybe I wil try a q-tip.  It really has stayed pretty clean, but I am sure I would be shocked by how much more it could sparkle again!

Offline DiamondLady

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2007, 06:38:57 PM »
GL, I think you will be pretty safe if you use rubbing alcohol on a q-tip.  I know they recommend this to clean computer parts and keyboards and such because it cleans and then evaporates and does not "sit" like water does.
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Offline robin

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #14 on: September 25, 2007, 06:54:29 PM »
I'm brainstorming here...

One thing you could try is to mask off the face-- so as not to leave a residue, use that cling film that comes on cell phone screens and similar.

Then use a small child's toothbrush dipped in (choose your poison) gin, alcohol, vinegar or the like, or just dipped in warm water to start.


Offline evilmailjeep

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2007, 08:09:28 PM »
If your watch has a plastic lens DO NOT USE ALCOHOL. It can cause it to permanently fog. (voice of experience)

Offline evilmailjeep

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2007, 08:16:50 PM »
BR, when I am bad and get some grease behind a stone I'll coat the whole ring with laundry detergent, let it sit for a bit, then swish it around in really hot water, scrub the lot with a denture toothbrush..

Let us know what works!

Offline diamondjunkie

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #17 on: September 26, 2007, 01:36:29 AM »
Just another point on watches: if you have one that is marked 'water resistant to 100m' or whatever, be aware that once you open the back, it is no longer guaranteed to resist water as the seal has been broken and it may well not be resistant anymore - it would need to be checked by a watchsmith.  The seals are easily damaged.  Chances are it is still fine but just something to be mindful of.

If I remember right, watches are no longer stamped as 'water proof' - only 'water resistant' even if it is to a great depth.  I'm sure that has something to do with liability.

Anyone watch savvy out there?

Offline BigRed

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #18 on: September 26, 2007, 08:12:08 AM »
The hot vinegar worked! It took that cloud right off! I let it soak in it about 5 minutes then I agitated it in the vinegar and let it sit a couple more then rinsed it off with hot water and dried it with a dry cloth.
DBL's One and only Rose Gold Queen!!!!!

Offline Mrs Mitchell

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #19 on: September 26, 2007, 08:50:59 AM »
GL, I've got one like that! I've never cleaned it either. (Actually, I've never worn it. It was a gift from a man I really don't like. ;D) Should be ok to clean with alcohol or toothbrush and detergent.  It's water resistant unless it's been opened, as DJ said. From the paperwork, if I get the battery changed, it has to go back to the maker to have its water resistance redone. It has sapphire glass on the face though, so alcohol should be ok.

The blurb on the paperwork recommends you take it back to the store for a service and clean once a year and otherwise leave it alone, other than a rub with a jewelry cloth.

Looks really nice on your wrist.

Jen
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Offline joia

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #20 on: September 26, 2007, 09:48:17 AM »
I just tried hot water and washing up detergent in my US cleaner and my eternity ring looks fabulous.
I had never put hot water before and it makes all the difference. 
A little rinse in vinegar and Voilá
Thanks everyone these tips are really good.  All are very welcome.
Joia

Offline GracefulLion

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #21 on: September 26, 2007, 09:49:40 AM »
Oh Jen, it is such a lovely watch!  I wear mine everyday!  You must somehow expunge the feeling of that man from it and get it on your wrist immediately!!

Thanks for all the tips everyone!!!  I wonder if I should take it in to be cleaned and serviced.  Just for its general upkeep.  I have had it about 4 years now and have never had to do anything but have the clasp tightened a bit.  I am going to try the q-tip with alcohol and let you know how it goes!

Offline Mrs Mitchell

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #22 on: September 26, 2007, 11:55:42 AM »
It is pretty, isn't it? I would probably wear it if DH hadn't got me a really good watch for an anniversary gift last year. I'd feel bad about leaving that at home to wear the belated guilt offering from MonsterEx.

I can always pass it down as an heirloom. No future generation need know the full picture...
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Offline jewellk

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2007, 01:30:44 PM »
It is pretty, isn't it? I would probably wear it if DH hadn't got me a really good watch for an anniversary gift last year. I'd feel bad about leaving that at home to wear the belated guilt offering from MonsterEx.

I can always pass it down as an heirloom. No future generation need know the full picture...

or sell it to fund some other sparklie to pass on...I've done that with some old jewelry from the exes. It was hard to part with the pieces themselves but once I got the new stuff, I was much happier and no more bad memories and stuff I wouldn't wear anymore cluttering up my jewelry box!  ;D
Mindi  :munky2:

Offline Mrs Mitchell

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Re: Jewelry Maintenance
« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2007, 03:03:58 PM »
Now that's an idea! I love the watch actually, but I don't wear it. Ebay might be the answer. I'll psych myself up to part with it by picking out a new piece...

Jen
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jennifer@diamondsbylauren.com