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Individual pieces of jewelry, called findings, can either be made as single pieces or made from different components. These different components can be stringing material for bead threading, clasps, bails, and metal loops. Settings are places where gems are held in unfinished rings, pendants, or anywhere that can feasibly hold gems. Then, after the process of mounting the gem, the jewelry is called by its actual name. An example of this would be pendants that are unfinished, without their gem having been set, are called settings, and after it has been added, it would be referred to as an actual pendant.
There are many different ways to set a gem into earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and any kind of jewelry that has places for them. What you will use for each individual piece of jewelry is unique to that piece, its dimensions, and the finish of your gemstone of choice. Metal bands that wrap around one of these gemstones are called bezels, and they are more secure than other methods of holding gems, such as prongs. However, their nature does not let as much light shine through the gemstone itself, which can reduce gem brilliance and, as a result, the appeal of the stone as the setpiece of your ring. The majority of bezels are made purely by hand to fit a specific, unique stone, but can be ordered as bezel cups in a few different pre-set sizes.
Prong settings have three or more prongs that rise up and hold the set gem in place, and gem settings that have these prongs are called heads. These can be welded onto jewelry of your choice like pendants, rings, or bands to let a gem be mounted into the ring. They are very versatile, also come in the same shapes as the chosen gem and are required to be the correct size, or the gem could either not fit at all or could fall out very easily. These can hold a great number of different gems, or they could hold just one. If you’re shopping for one, keep in mind which one is stronger, because different metals impact the overall strength of the prong, and ones used in rings such as wedding rings are stronger than the average prong setting. This is because they need to be able to take punishment from daily life, and cannot be made of a metal that is easily battered.
One of the most beautifully designed gem settings for any ring out there can be their channel setting, a style that puts different gems in a row by putting them between two strips of metal. These are cut by length in the ring and have the stones placed into them, with the channel overlapping with each gem. Unfortunately, for this style, it doesn’t allow the gems to be set as securely as some other styles would have them set, and are sadly susceptible to losing their gems. Everyday heavy lifting can put enough of a strain and a bend into the ring for the stone to pop right out of it and be unset. Channel settings are very delicate and a good amount of metal in and around the band and stones is essential to make the gems as secure as they can possibly be.
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