Hi friends! I have an internal confliction and I figured maybe talking about it here would help
The back story
My boyfriend is away on active orders with the military. Before he left back in October, he ordered me a beautiful opal ring that I could wear every day while I was gone to feel connected to him. It is so pretty and lovely, but the opal was glued to the band rather than attached via a different setting and unfortunately fell off after only four month. It’s not possible for the company to repair it, so I have to return it for store credit. Where I am conflicted is on which ring I should replace it with. I will be getting $200 in store credit once my return is processed
Here is option number 1
I love the style of this ring. I love that it still has opals, but they’re in a prong setting so it should be more secure. I love that the stones lay flush against the band similar to my old ring, and I have a lot of sentiment attachment to the beautiful opal. the price is really nice- I can purchase it with store credit and even have something leftover without having to go out of pocket. The downsize is that it only goes up to a size 10. My old ring was a size 11. I did check with a ring sizer and a size 10 fits, but it’s much more snug. It’s not uncomfortable to get on and off, but there definitely isn’t really room for weight gain in my fingers. The band is solid gold so it may move/adjust slightly once I wear it based on the shape of my fingers. Unfortunately, there are no opal rings available that go to a size 11.
Here is option number 2
I don’t really know anything about moonstone, but this is the only ring that is in a size 11 that would have even a hint of fun colors the way the original opal ring did. This is definitely a much bigger stone (probably still small in the scheme of things, just bigger compared to the opal), and it’s in a pronged setting so it’s secure. I am worried about snagging, but I’m told I’ll adjust. I don’t have any sentimental attachment to moonstone and don’t even think I’ve seen it in real life before. I did sometimes like fidget with my old ring by twisting it on my finger, which would be better suited with the size 11. But this is also more than double the price of option one, and I would have to come out of pocket $65 + tax if this is the ring I choose. It’s worth it if I love it and I can wear it every day. I know opal is a softer stone compared to moonstone, so I don’t want to choose option one and have issues with it in another four months (luckily both options will be covered under a 365 day warranty, and I believe both have a 90 day exchange option too). If the opal ring came in a size 11 I think that would be my choice, but I am just not 100% right now. I don’t have a ton of jewelry experience and I don’t wear any other rings. I don’t sleep with it, bathe with it, or wash dishes with it, and I do try to avoid water as much as possible with that finger. I welcome all thoughts!
My instinct is opals,
That band is super narrow, and should honestly not be too difficult for a jeweler to resize if needed down the line
Moonstone is gorgeous but ring settings like that are super annoying because they catch on everything, and sure you do get used to it to an extent, but rings like that suck to wear in my experience.
The only thing that i personally would hesitate about if I were buying for myself is that opal is soft and the prong setting like that leaves exposed and easy to chip edges
I still personally think the opal is safer, but I’m really hard on jewelry and only buy things that have protected settings. If you’re able to be delicate I think either would work, but opal still has my vote!
I’m leaning opal too. I actually was able to ask my boyfriend his opinion, and he votes opal. To quote him “I don’t like the look of the other one.” And I’m glad you were able to validate my snagging fears! I didn’t think I would be able to ask him because the military had taken all of their phones over a week ago because too many of the people were calling Sargents “sirs.” Apparently that 2.2.22 magic worked and he got it back tonight!
What are the protected settings I should look for for future rings? I have heard opal is soft and I need to be careful, and now I’m going to try even harder.
I agree and say go with the opals. Who wants to worry about snagging?
I usually go for things that are set with a cup or bezel since the metal fully circles the edges of the stones
So pretty close to the original, but with metal actually surrounding the bottom edge of each cab and holding it in place
Settings like that can block light so they’re less ideal for, say, a diamond, or a moonstone, but since opals don’t need light like that it’s a perfect setting for them
Pave and channel settings are great for smaller stones too, but again block light, and aren’t as dainty imo
For opals especially I generally go for rounded edges and I generally try to make sure that the stone has metal protecting it on all sides, which generally means a setting that is more metal with the stone kinda sunken in so if I were to punch something metal would hit and not stone, but I am super hard on my jewelry and prissy about my opals especially, and most of my rings/pieces are more statement and less dainty
In my experience, Opals make terrible rings. They’re a very soft stone. I’ve had a couple, Opals are a favorite of mine, they both chipped. Think about how much you move your hands around, just brushing your hand into something could chip it.
Opal hardness is variable depending on its exact composition and formation conditions, and ranges from 5 to 6.5 on the Mohs scale. Its toughness is very poor to fair, making opal a gem that is suitable for jewelry but requires care when wearing so as to not scratch or break the stone.
Mohs scale goes from 0-10. 10 being a diamond.
Can you get an opal necklace instead? When my guy was deployed I wore his extra set of dog tags. An opal would be a step up! LOL
Whatever you choose, post pics!
I love the look of the opal. The hardness scale is definitely something to consider, though.
I’m leaning opal to stay with the original sentiment from your mans, but I do love the moonstone too. I think my personal issue with that one is that it’s like diamond-y square shape (I prefer round), but this is your ring!!
I would do what Kate says - consider how much movement you naturally have on a typical day, and see if the opal will hold up.
I would also love to see what you end up with xo
Oh no! When the opal fell out of your ring, did you notice/were you able to save the stone? If so it might be worth a shot to consider gluing it back in place yourself. Likely this is why the store doesn’t want to repair it, since they will just glue it back and then there is still the risk that it will detach again for you and you’ll be unhappy again later down the road.
Opals are typically super fragile/prone to shattering, hence why they are often set with assistance of glue to spread the point of contact through the setting.
Some composite “opals” don’t have this durability risk as much so you can set them with prongs.
I have big fingers too so I understand the frustration in the lack of choices
For my birthday/Xmas gift last year my bf treated me with a custom ring that was big enough. We worked with a jeweler over in Asia. So happy with how it turned out, and looks just like the original design that I wanted it to be replicate (but the designer didn’t have my size ).
I made my decision! The ring should be here Wednesday and I will immediately report here for a ring fashion show
Because I got some extra things I qualified for a free charm necklace and I’m smitten with how cute the necklace is too (and over the moon about the ring).