Caring for Antique & Vintage Jewelry and Watches

Lang Antiques Jewelry Care

GENERAL CARE

As with anything of value, especially sentimental value, taking good care of your vintage and antique jewelry from Lang will enhance its beauty and extend its lifespan. We encourage you to have your jewelry checked and cleaned by us or by your trusted local jeweler every six months, to ensure that each piece is in good wearable condition with all gemstones in place. It’s not uncommon for stones to come loose over time, and it’s much easier to tighten a loose stone than replace a lost one!

CLEANING YOUR LANG ENGAGEMENT RING AND BAND

They’re the shining reminder of your love—don’t let them grow dull with smudges! Life is busy and it’s easy to forget about cleaning your rings, but it only takes a few minutes to revive them.

Most engagement rings and wedding bands are durable enough to be cleaned quickly and easily at home. Fill a small bowl with warm, soapy water and submerge your ring and band for 1-2 minutes. Using a small, soft brush, such as an old toothbrush, gently brush the stone(s) and setting, paying special attention to the back of the ring and any details in the setting that might be prone to collecting grime. Dip the ring in the soapy water to rinse, or rinse under a gentle stream of warm water ONLY if you’re sure that your sink’s stopper has a tight seal. Or, use our complimentary jewelry cleaner according to the instructions on the label. Dry with a soft cloth, such as a jewelry cleaning cloth.

Each of our Lang engagement rings is as unique as the person who wears it—if you have any questions or concerns about cleaning yours, please don’t hesitate to contact us. And you are always welcome to stop by our store and have your jewelry cleaned.

CLEANING YOUR VINTAGE AND ANTIQUE JEWELRY

Giving your jewelry the spa treatment on a regular basis will keep it looking forever young, regardless of its calendar age! Most pieces suitable for everyday wear can easily be cleaned with warm, soapy water and a soft, small brush, and dried with a soft cloth. Or, use our complimentary jewelry cleaner to keep your gems shining like new.

Because they’re lucky enough to grace your fingers, rings require more frequent care. The kinds of things that may be healthy for you—exercise, gardening, cleaning, outdoor recreation, etc.—tend to have the opposite effect on your finger dazzlers. Similarly, exposure to harsh chemicals, heat, or extended periods of submersion in water can be unhealthy for your vintage or antique ring. Water, especially cold water, can both loosen your rings and shrink the size of your fingers slightly, causing the ring to slip off. These precautions even include getting a good night’s sleep: if you take your rings off at night, you’ll double their lifetime!

Softer stones such as opal, coral, pearls, lapis, and others can be cleaned dry; simply wipe them gently with a jewelry-cleaning cloth. You can learn more about specific gemstones and their care here. Don’t forget, many of our oldest pieces never learned to swim—for example, closed back and foil-backed jewelry, popular in the Georgian Era, should not be exposed to water even in the course of careful wear. Many of the unusual materials found in antique jewelry require special care: please feel free to contact us, and we’ll be happy to advise you. We’ve seen it all!

WATCH CARE AND WARRANTY

We like to think of our vintage and antique timepieces as examples of fine jewelry art, all of which are serviced prior to sale. Unless otherwise noted, the movement of each piece will be in working order when the watch leaves our store. However, due to the delicate nature of these timepieces, there is no further warranty on the movement or any other mechanical parts.

Almost all of our timepieces have mechanical movements, which require daily winding to keep time for daily wear. Gently wind the crown in one direction until it comes to a natural stop, without forcing the movement. To set the time, gently pull the crown to free the hands, then set the time in a clockwise direction. If your watch includes further “complications,” as watch experts call them, we will advise you on its proper use at the time of sale.

Vintage and antique timepieces are not waterproof nor water resistant. Like all mechanical objects of a certain age, these timepieces do need to be professionally cleaned periodically—we recommend every year or two. You may find that these watches do not keep time as precisely as a contemporary quartz movement would—if you find your watch to be gaining or losing time in excess of a few minutes over 24 hours, please contact us for service. Your watch will usually tell you when it’s “time” for a check-up!