Professional Jeweler Archive: Four Classic Styles of Clasps

June 2001

For Your Staff/Selling Jewelry Styles

Four Classic Styles of Clasps

This is the 15th in a series of articles Professional Jeweler is presenting on different styles of jewelry. Learning about different styles, selling points and where they come from can make your job more interesting and profitable

Make sure clasps work efficiently and smoothly before placing a chain or necklace on display, and know the differences among clasps so you can explain them to customers.

– by Lorraine M. O'Donnell, A.J.P.

Photos by Robert Weldon


A gentle push downward opens the spring-action mechanism. When closing, the catch snaps smoothly into alignment with the clasp end to ensure a secure lock.

14k gold PushLock clasps (U.S. Patent 5,117,539) are by JewelerCountry, Burbank, CA; (888) 539-3537, fax (818) 558-1026,

Lobster Claw Clasp

To make a lobster claw clasp work, the wearer hooks a finger or fingernail on the lever and pulls back the lock mechanism, allowing the clasp to open and close securely.

14k gold lobster claw clasps are by Stuller, Lafayette, LA; (800) 877-7777, fax (800) 444-4741.

Toggle Clasp

The wearer of a toggle clasp places the rod transversely through a round eye or loop, binding the two ends together. Sometimes a pierced crosspiece on the chain is used to tighten or prevent the clasp from slipping.

Sterling silver toggle clasps are by Rio Grande, Albuquerque, NM; (800) 545-6566.

Spring Rings

The wearer uses a thumb or index finger to apply gentle pressure to a small lever, allowing the clasp to open and close securely.

14k white or yellow gold spring rings are by Hoover & Strong Inc., Richmond, VA; (800) 759-9997.

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications