Rings are pieces of jewelry worn around the fingers. They range from miniscule bands to extravagant statement pieces. While specific rings serve practical or symbolic purposes, still more are enjoyed for pure aesthetic value. Popular ring materials include glass, silver, gold, platinum and diamonds.
A common way to wear rings is one or two on a hand, on separate digits. Stacking, or wearing multiple rings on the same finger, is getting more attention. While it may seem like a new trend, the practice has a long tradition.
Ring sizing ensures a person gets a band that fits. However, hands may swell or shrink with time. Or someone inherits a ring made for another. Guard rings are slim discrete bands worn above another ring. With the guard in place, a looser ring won’t slip off.
Precious metals can withstand oxidation, and are alloyed with other ingredients for strength. Diamonds are the hardest material, while other gemstones have their own kinds of endurance. Neither metal nor stone are invincible. A second type of guard ring, also known as an insert, is a type of split shank band. A second ring is slipped inside and protected from harm.
Engagement, wedding and anniversary rings to commemorate a couple’s milestones. According to legend, the left hand’s fourth digit has a vein, the vena amoris, leading straight to the heart. Engagement and related bands go on this finger to emphasize their connection to love. With many rings and one vena amoris, they’re worn atop each other.
Wedding sets are made with stacking in mind. They come in groups of two or more rings, made to coordinate with one another. This provides a unified look among the bands, underscoring the pair’s bond. Engagement rings in sets are specially made to be attractive alone, and with the eventual wedding piece.
More and more jewelers are creating rings specifically for stacking. This often means slim bands designed to match a wide range of other rings. Fashion bands come in an array of shapes, colors and gemstones. While some are worn one or two at a time, layering is encouraged.
As accessories, stackable rings can be arranged to coordinate or contrast with an outfit. Possibilities include playing with color, texture, motifs and more. It’s also enjoyable just to mix and match the rings, discovering new combinations.
One theme a person can experiment with is color. This can mean a monochromatic look, with metal and jewels matching each other. Other possibilities include alternating hues, creating a striped effect, or staggering gemstones to create dots. A contrasting ring in an otherwise single hued stack may also be interesting.
Choosing a row of bands based on gem cut concentrates on light reflecting from the stones. Pave gemstones would fill the stack with glitter. Round brilliants would provide greater amounts of light. Step cut jewels, like baguettes, add luster to rings.
Engraving is the process of cutting patterns, messages and other imagery onto metal. Designs can surround the entire band, or parts of it. On stacking rings, engraving can be a subtler form of adornment. The sentimental may wear stacked rings carved with significant dates. Other possibilities include alternating blank and engraved bands.
Texture is another way to play with stackable rings. Many factors, from settings, finish and casting, can influence a band’s surface. This in turn alters how light reflects from it. A mirror like polish would produce more sheen than a satin finish. A round band has a different gleam than an angular one. Gems add different types of luster. The stack will shine differently depending on your selection.
While stacking rings by theme can be fun, there’s also enjoyment in hodgepodge styles. Applying bands by no particular concept creates a sense of whimsy. As with other jewelry, stackable rings should bring joy to the wearer. Everything else, such as embellishment or gem cuts, is meant to add pleasure.
Most stackable rings come in slim widths such as three millimeters. The thicker the band, the more difficult it is to fit other rings on the finger. Designs where the top is broader than the bottom have similar concerns. If you want to add wide rings to your stack, experiment with one or two at first.
Each gemstone has their own levels of hardness, toughness and resistance to light and chemicals. Precious metal and their alloys have different amounts of durability as well. Wearing rings one atop the other may cause harder elements to rub against softer pieces, creating scratches and other forms of wear. It may help to be mindful about what pieces are placed together, preventing accidental damage.
With multiple rings, keeping track may be difficult. Designating individual bags or compartments for each band makes it easier to know what is where. Storing the rings apart also protects them from bumping against one another and possible scratching each other.