AFTER the birth of a child, many of us become the kings and queens of safety, thinking of any possible scenario that could put our little one at risk. I will be the first to admit that I might take this a little overboard at times. I’ve spent hours Googling the best cribs, strollers, car seats, and any other baby necessity you can imagine, only to realize in the end that is in incredibly difficult to find the “best” of anything- that all of these products will do a pretty good job at keeping my kiddo safe. I end up buying the first item I liked. This is my life now.
As a goldsmith, I have come across a worry that a lot of mothers face. I’ve heard it expressed many different ways but it can generally be summed up in one line:
“I’m afraid my wedding ring will scratch my baby.”
Ouch. Suddenly that symbol of love we wear on our left hand becomes a cause for anxiety. Are these fears warranted? Sadly yes.
While these circumstances may be rare, there is a possibility of the prongs of a wedding ring scratching the delicate skin of a newborn. Perhaps you or someone you know has a small scar from being scratched by a ring when they were a baby.
I have created a list of 3 simple precautions you can take to protect your baby and give you peace of mind:
1. Change Out Prong Setting For A Bezel Setting
I am a huge fan of bezel settings, not only for their stylish appearance but also for the safety they provide. When a stone is set in a bezel, there are no prongs, rather the stone sits down in a protective cup. This is a wonderful way to make your ring baby-friendly.
I recently had the privileged of doing such a transformation to my sister-in-laws ring after she approached me with this baby concern.
2. Get A Custom Wedding Band To Match Your Engagement Ring
Traditionally wedding rings come in sets, one engagement ring and one wedding ring. When a baby rolls around, a good solution would be to temporarily wear your wedding band only, and not your engagement ring. Even if your wedding band has diamonds in it, they are almost always set low into the ring, and not in tall prongs like the center stone of an engagement ring.
If you do not already have a wedding ring to match your engagement ring, this would be a great opportunity to have one made. Using modern goldsmithing technology, custom wedding bands (also called “shadow bands”) can be made to match your engagement ring with exactness. Not to mention, once your baby is a bit older and you go back to wearing your engagement ring, a matching wedding set will look amazing when the rings compliment each other.
3. Wear a simple plain band
So you want to give your wedding set a temporary break while you care for your baby, but also don’t want to be without a wedding ring? There is something truly elegant about a simple plain band being used for a wedding ring. Some women opt to do this from the beginning, foregoing the diamond altogether. I’m not going to lie, it’s a pretty classy look.
Additionally, a plain band can serve a great purpose for mothers whose fingers swell during pregnancy. Many mothers might be hesitant to have their original wedding set sized up when their fingers swell, only to have it re-sized back down to its original size when the swelling goes down. Another great advantage to these rings is that sizing a plain band is about as simple as they come. These rings can often be stretched and contracted to size and require minimal labor.
If you want to get extra sentimental (or cheesy in my case) you can get a message engraved on the inside of these plain bands. The fun part is there is generally more space to add longer messages than you normally can on an engagement ring with diamonds.
When my wife was pregnant with our first child, and her fingers started to swell, I made her a plain band ring and engraved the following on the inside:
“When your fingers swell up, my heart does too.”
The key to inside ring messages is to not overthink it, mostly because anything can and will sound cheesy. But she loved it, of course.
Peace Of Mind
As a father who has witnessed this scenario second-hand, I knew I had to make this post. I do think it’s possible to be over-cautious, as being a worry-wart is something that I sincerely struggle with. I do believe however that if a potential risk is easily manageable, there’s no reason not to take proper precaution. In the end it’s the peace of mind you receive that will make your time with your little one even more special.
If you feel sad at the prospect of setting your engagement ring in the jewelry box, take comfort in knowing that you can still wear your ring out on date nights…but then a whole new worry about how your baby will possibly survive without you. 😉 (I know, I’m working on it)