Heirloom Wedding Rings: Reuse or Recycle?

Heirloom wedding rings that have been in the family from generations always seem to carry more meaning than new, store bought rings. Jewelry is meant to tell a story, and when your wedding ring tells the story of your parents, grandparents and maybe even great grandparents as well, it will truly warm your heart. But what do you do if your grandmother’s heirloom wedding ring is in poor condition, or, worse, is outdated in style?

Many brides to be face the daunting task of dealing with family politics regarding heirloom jewelry. However, it may be easier than you think to turn an old or outdated heirloom piece into a new beautiful creation.

Gold Heirloom Wedding Rings

Gold Heirloom Wedding RingsIf the heirloom wedding ring that you have in hand is made from gold, you’re in luck. Gold is extremely malleable and relatively easy to melt down for resizing, reshaping and complete remodeling. While you may decided to keep your grandmother’s ring the way it is but over the years, gold jewelry get affected by various substances and conditions therefor you need to know about cleaning gold jewelry at home or must have a ultrasonic jewelry cleaner.

If you do have reservations about the style or condition of your ring, consider taking it to your local jewelers for a consultation. Your local jeweler (not your local jewelry retailer) should be able to tell you the quality of gold in the gold ring, its general condition and your options regarding melting it down and starting anew. Women who are particular about having a wedding ring that fits snugly beneath their engagement ring might find alterations such as resizings or slight redesigns particularly rewarding.

Diamond Heirloom Wedding Rings

Diamond Heirloom Wedding RingsMany heirloom wedding rings, especially Victorian, Edwardian Wedding and Art Deco wedding rings incorporate diamonds. Over the years, diamonds can crack, or chip. Moreover, with today’s diamond cutting technology, it’s much easier to find high quality diamond with high light reflection and superb brilliance.

If you find that the diamonds in your grandmother’s heirloom diamond wedding ring aren’t up to par, consider having them removed and set as diamond studs, or in a pretty diamond pendant, and replace them with high quality stones.

You may, conversely, decide to keep them, but change the setting. This can be done as well. A skilled jeweler can change a five stone diamond ring into a three stone diamond ring and can remove a prong setting and replace it with a bezel setting. Keep in mind, however, that this is difficult and time consuming work, and may be quite expensive.


Heirloom rings can be extremely meaningful and significant to a newly wed couple, but its important that they fit the overall needs of the wearer(s). The wedding ring is meant to be worn forever. If you are in doubt about the quality or design of your ring, take it to your jewelers for a consultation. You might be able to make small adjustments that make it even more special.

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