Sep 4

Antique Ring Restoration Story – Filigree Hearts Re-Made

By Calla Gold

Great Grandma’s Antique Ring Didn’t Make it

antique ring restoration

Cheryl’s Ring With Broken Hearts

When Cheryl finally received the antique ring that belonged to her great-grandmother she loved its intricacy and sweet details.

The little filigree hearts were her favorite part. Unfortunately, somewhere along the line one side of the ring with the little hearts had maybe been stepped on. It was badly broken.

She was told that the her antique ring restoration plan wasn’t going to fly. Her ring was too badly damaged and too old to come back from the state it was in.

Ten Years in a Box

Antique ring, broken filigree

The Design was Beautiful, Even When Broken

Cheryl’s mother had inherited the heart ring and put it with five other rings into her jewelry box.

It was buried under some haphazard pearl and bead necklaces. Cheryl’s mom wasn’t into wearing much jewelry. Just her wedding ring and diamond stud earrings.

Cheryl is a personal organizer. Kind of the opposite of her mom. She gave her mom the gift of organizing her jewelry box for a birthday gift. That is when the antique heart ring came to her.

That Ring is Toast!

Another View Before Work Was Begun

After hearing stories of her family, especially her great grandmother, Cheryl was determined to wear her antique ring. Her first three inquiries about fixing the broken part and re-making the heart filigree were met with firm no’s.

Cheryl is a short, fiery redhead, freckled and fierce. “No” was not the right answer. And leaving it her jewelry box after years of neglect was not on her to-do list.

I’m not a fan of “No” myself. Happily there is a jeweler for every job. And if you have a deep bench for your team, and I do, one of my team members can.

Antique Ring Restoration – Fixing Filigree

Antique ring restoration

Sako Laying in his Handmade Filigree Hearts to Restore this Ring

I’ve been asked, what is filigree? The filigree look is a delicate, intricate, and lace-like artistic design element.

In older filigree jewelry pieces jewelers would pierce the metal with tiny tools and file and buff to create openings. Or they would have an open area and create wire creations and connect them into the open spaces.

I work with a patient and talented man who creates filigree. This is not a task for the inexperienced or the practical. It is time consuming, tiny and tedious work. But it is work I have huge admiration for.

An antique ring is a ring that is over 100 years old, where vintage is over 50 years old.

Many of the antique rings I see have a lot of hand work involved in their creation. Watching antique ring restoration take place, takes me back into jewelry making history.

Back Together With Hearts Singing

antique ring restoration

With Hearts Shining Brightly, This Ring is Ready to Give More Years of Happiness

Cheryl’s desire to connect with her great grandmother through her jewelry lifts my heart. Being able to see her beautiful ring worn was a moment of quiet emotional happiness.

A funny moment at the end was when Cheryl said, “I’m not a hearts kind of a gal.”

“Seriously?” I asked.

“I love these hearts because my great grandfather chose them for my great grandmother. It speaks to what a nice and romantic guy he was and I love that. But I’d never buy myself hearts.”

“What if your husband bought you a heart piece of jewelry?” I asked her.

“That would be so romantic and awesome. But he’s not that kind of a guy. Never happen.” She said.

Hmm, I have his cell number.

Your Personal Jeweler,



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