Clippity Clasps

Happy Valentine’s Day, friends! I hope you are all enjoying this holiday, regardless of your relationship status. Who can’t love a day centered around eating chocolates? I’ve gone many Valentine’s Days without a male Valentine and managed to enjoy them thoroughly :-) Also, today is the birthday of one of my kittens! He is two years old today. Happy birthday Dylan!

For any of you who may not have been following me this weekend, I stayed true to my word and completed the tasks I set out for myself. Late Sunday morning, as I still had a cat curled up on my lap and was deep into a TV coma, I wondered if I would be able to muster up the motivation to work. But, being the  professional I am, I did it! I made, photographed, priced, and listed a new pair of earrings.

And now, for today’s feature presentation: clasps! I have already touched on the subject a little with my post on toggles. But there are other essential clasp types that you should also know about. Aside from toggles, other commonly used clasps are: spring rings, lobster claws, fishhook, hook and eye, magnetic, and s-hook.

Spring Ring: I cannot say for sure, but I would venture a guess that this is one of (if not the) most common clasp used. I know that it is what I use most. It is relatively inexpensive, easy for most to use, and very secure. A spring ring clasp is made up of two circles. The smaller is where you attach the jewelry, whether it be chain, beading wire, silk, etc. The larger portion is what we will call the mouth of the clasp. From this circle pokes out a small lever. Pulling back on this lever, opens up the mouth of the clasp, allowing you to bring a ring through, securing your jewelry.

Lobster Claw: This clasp is similar to the spring ring in function, but different in shape. The lobster claw has a much sleeker shape, though often also bulkier, than the spring ring. Named for its similarity to the shape of an actual lobster’s claw, the lever is a bit more subtle than on the spring ring. These also use up more metal, so are going to be pricier than spring rings.

Fishhook: I most often associate fishhook clasps with pearl necklaces. This is a nice, secure clasp comprised of two pieces. The first, the outside, is generally an eye-type oval with a hollow center. The second piece looks similar to a fishhook (hence, the name :-) ). On the outer, open tip of the outside piece, is a small rod of metal going from the top to the bottom. The hook portion goes in around the rod, and is secured by notches on each end of the “U” shape. Were this to somehow come undone, the aforementioned rod helps to hold the hook in place. Despite their small size, fishook clasps can be somewhat pricey.

Hook and Eye: If you haven’t caught on by now, clasps are pretty literally named based on their design. The hook and eye clasp is made up of a hook that goes into some sorty of “eye” device. On simpler models of the clasp, the eye will simply be a soldered ring. If the hook is more ornamental, chances are the eye will be too. While this clasp is extremely easy to use without the aid of someone else (which is particularly appealing in bracelets), this is not the most secure clasp. I’m not telling you this to scare you away. Just know that you don’t want your favorite, everyday wear bracelet or necklace to have this type of clasp. And when wearing jewelry with a hook and eye clasp, remember to keep a careful eye on it.

Magnetic: This one is a no-brainer! These clasps have magnets inside to do all the work. Generally, I tend to stay away from magnetic clasps, as they too can easily come undone. But when I do use them, I opt for ones that connect one on top of each other (as opposed to two ends meeting). I also go for thicker clasps that take a little work to open. The harder it is to open, the more secure it’s going to be. Again, this is not a terrible clasp option, you just have to know to be careful.

S-Hook: And last, but certainly not least, is the s-hook clasp. This consists of an “S” shaped center piece with attachments (generally rings of some sort) on either end that the “S” can slip in and out of. Again, not the most secure clasp, but much more reliable than it’s hook and eye clasp cousin.

I hope that I have enlightened and not scared you away from some of these clasps. I have used them all at one point or another, and can vouch for them. It is just my duty, here in this blog, to give you as much information as I can in each of my posts. Have a wonderful day and I will talk to you all again tomorrow!