Jewelry clasps often serve more that just a functional purpose. Besides holding both side of the necklace or bracelet together, they can also be an important part of the jewelryâ€™s design. There are several types of clasps available today; each one has its advantages and disadvantages.
The spring ring clasp is the most widely used today. To open the clasp, you push backwards on a tiny lever on a circular ring. The lever will cause the ring to open, at which point you will insert the loop or ring from the opposite side of the chain. Then you let go of the lever, allowing the ring to shut. The ring will remain shut, holding your jewelry together, until you pull back on the lever again. While these clasps are secure they may be difficult to operate, especially if the components are small.
Lobster claw clasps are very similar to the ring clasps. The major difference is the shape of the rings and levers. Instead of a circular ring, the lobster claw clasp is generally longer with an easier to grip lever. Overall, this type of clasp is easier to open and close than the standard ring clasp.
Box clasps come in a variety of sizes and styles. They can be basic and simple or bold and decorative. The fastener is a two-piece clasp. One side will open when you push down on the wedge. The other side will slide into that wedge and it will click into place. To release the clap you press on the exterior wedge again to open it.
This clasp is easier to use that the ring or lobster clasp, but is usually not as strong or reliable. However some box clasps have safety guards to make them more secure.
Toggle clasps come in a wide variety of styles. One side of the chain will have a circle or other shape with an open center. On the opposite side of the chain there is a thick bar in the shape of a T. You place the bar inside the center of the ring and the top of the T design will extend far enough past the circles edges to hold the ends together. Because this clasp does not have a locking or spring device to hold it in place it is not as secure as most other clasps. However, it is easy to use when by your self.
A hidden latch is designed not to be detected. Its purpose is to allow the design of the jewelry to flow uninterrupted by a clasp. Hidden clasps usually have safety latches or guards to make them more secure.
Decorative clasps hold the jewelry together but they are usually the main focal point of the piece. The jewelry is usually designed around the clasp.
Magnetic clasps are easy to use, but are generally not very secure. This is a two-piece claps where both ends of the chain have small magnets attached to the, When the magnets are brought together the lock in place to hold the jewelry together.
A two-piece clasp is one where one end of the claps screws into the other end to secure the chain in place.
When making a jewelry purchase you should choose the clasp that is right for you. Try the piece on to determine how easy the clasp is to open and close without assistance. You should also make sure that the clasp is secure, especially if you are buying valuable pieces. A clasp that is not secure may open causing your jewelry to be lost or otherwise damaged.
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