Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Puzzle Rings

When I was in fifth grade puzzle rings were all the rage and a lot of the girls in my class had them in silver.  Puzzle rings are made of interlocking rings that you have to assemble in a certain way in order to wear.  They apparently originated in either Turkey or Asia a very long time ago and made their way to Europe and then the Americas.  They come in a variety of styles, but the most common seem to be the four ring variety, which is what we all had when I was ten.  I don't remember who taught me how to assemble them, but it's a skill I've never forgotten.  I've confounded many friends, dates and co-workers with my ability to assemble a puzzle ring.  Many people have never even heard of them, much less know how to put them together.  Everyone always wants to give it a try, but trust me, even an engineering degree won't help if you don't know the secret.

I doubt I wore my puzzle ring much after the fifth grade, but when I was around college age I went to a flea market with my parents and I spotted a 14K gold one, unassembled, in a display case.  When I asked to see it the sellers said they didn't know how to put it together, but if I did I could have it for $15.  About five seconds later that ring was mine! 

My puzzle ring

I wear it occasionally and have been wearing it more recently.  It's a fun conversation piece and gives me something to fiddle with if I get bored.  Once you know how to put them together it's a snap, but learning is harder than it looks.  Here are the steps below.  Apologies for the slightly out of focus photos, it was difficult to get good photos and hold the ring in position at the same time.

My puzzle ring, unassembled

Step one

Step two


I would like to get my hands on one of the twelve ring versions and learn how to assemble it. The design and assembly are totally different.  I've seen it done, but never done it myself.  And, I'd also like to find my original puzzle ring.  I'm not sure if I even still have it, but I'm now on a mission to look for it next time I'm at my mom's house.  

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