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Navel rings

I am feeling old. I have a possible commission for a navel ring and
I have no idea how to even start.

What makes a navel ring a navel ring? What makes it different from
an earring? She wants a “chameleon navel ring”. I’m figuring she’s
talking about the lizard and not something that changes color. Where
would the lizard be on such an item?

Does anyone on the list do body jewelry? None of my books are giving
me many clues on this one.

Confused and over forty,

Catherine Albion, CA

Buy couple of tattoo magazines. The body jewelry makers run ads in
these sheets. Of course you can just go to a shop that does BP and
look at them.There are lots with dolfins and other critters to look
at Bill

Dear Catherine,

Here’s one site that has lots of examples:

If the hyperlink doesn’t work the web address is

Don’t feel old! My kids say it’s not age, it’s attitude! Have


I have a mold made up of a navel ring. It is a 14guage piece that has
an opening. I have sold over 200 of these suckers and as soon as one
person has one everyone’s got to have one. I will cast it or send you
the mold. Berry’s Jewelry 615-256-7970

Hi catherine, I used to make jewellery for a piercing studio but I’ve
never heard of a chameleon style so it must be the cosmetic design.
Its hard to describe the shape of a navel ring. So I would suggest to
search for tatoo shops in your neighbourhood that sell body
jewellery. Or try on line. Key word ‘body jewellery’. The company I
used to work for is called Stainless Studios in Toronto. They must
have a web site with photos but I’m sorry I don’t have the address.
Good luck!


Welcome to the club! :wink:

I’ve never done any navel rings, but I looked on the web and found a
lot of links to all sorts of interesting(!) things, some of which I
would just as soon forget. Here’s a page that has pictures of numerous
navel rings, and you can see pretty clearly how they’re shaped and get
some ideas:

Yes, I know, “naval” . . . “of or relating to a navy”. Isn’t modern
education a wonderful thing?


Its a wacky world out there.

I have made my share of nipple and belly rings. The first thing you
are going to want to do is get a more detailed description of what
the customer wants exactly. If this piece is to be in silver, warn
your customer about the possibility of infection due to tarnish
reaction inside the wound.

There are a couple different kinds of ring that are normally

  1. Encapsulated Bead: in this particular type of ring, a semicircle
    is formed with the intended design, and a Bead is inserted between
    the two ends to close the gap. (You may want to do a search on the
    Internet to see what kind of stock jewelry is out there.)

  2. Locking End: in this design, a full circle is created by the
    design, kind of like a jump ring. One end of the design is generally
    sharpened, and the other end is recessed to accept the sharp end.
    So, in the case of the chameleon, you might have it so that the tail
    of the beast locks into its mouth. The design functions like a jump
    ring. The design is twisted open with the fingers, inserted through
    the wound in the belly, and then twisted closed.

  3. Screw on ball: in this design type, the design is inserted
    through the wound, and a ball is screwed onto the other end to
    prevent the design from sliding out of the wound.

You really need to find out from your customer what they want/need
before you proceed with your creation.


Catherine, I know just how you feel. I had a similar experience
about three years ago. A local body piercing shop sent one of their
customer to my store for a “custom navel ring”. I have always tried
to keep my personal views out of the picture when it came to a
customers request and I was “SURE” that I could fill this request.
It turned out to be the only job in six years of business that I
backed away from after working several hours on it. The engineering
was a challenge to start with but in the end, the customers
requirements were not to be met, especially at the price I had quoted
in the beginning. Also the “fittings” were somewhat uncomfortable
for me. In the end, I just threw up my hands and gave up. This one
time job was not going to be worth the time required. It also seemed
to me that it was not a “new market” that I wanted to enter. It was
memorable though.


A well laid out site…although i have a little question…isn’t
the preference for piercings other than in ears to be either titanium
or rhodium? a coating can always wear off–what of fears of infection
from the underlying steel? i’ll look through the archives a bit, as
there was a discussion on this some months ago…erhard.

First - I do not have a navl ring - Second- from people who do the
piercing I have been told that surgical steel is only safe and
sanitary way to go for body piercing metals Third-- I definitely do
not want to wear or make these - tho - for people who have-want them-
go for it…

The subject of navel rings must have made me sensitive to the more
unusual piercings I encounter, and I made the acquaintance of a young
lady just recently who sports “earlets”, sort of a rivet-like thing
that goes through the earlobe.

I’ve seen this before, although the other examples were rather
grotesque (in my opinion), with the openings stretched out in excess
of a quarter of an inch, up to an inch or so.

Anyway, it gave me an idea that I have tried to implement, but in the
meantime, the related question I’m posing is: what would you do if
someone with a large piercing came to you for something a bit more
sophisticated than the simple sleeve (or “earlet”) that is usually
present? It occurs to me that there are going to be growing numbers of
young people who may want to upgrade their adornments, and it just
seems like an interesting situation. Are they going to stay Goths
forever? I can’t help but wonder.

Loren @Loren_S_Damewood1

Dear Loren, Yes, there is hope for today’s goths, etc. As a teen in
the 60’s & 70’s I was into “beads, bells, light shows, incense, crash
pads and hari krishna all you groovy freaks!” (Cheech & Chong!) I
hated anything to do with “the establishment” especially diamonds!
Now? I love diamonds, especially colored ones. I love Cartier,
Tiffany, and Christian Dior styles! So who’s to say what can happen
with time.

With that in mind, the earlets can be upgraded to something elegant
with the help of someone like Etienne Perret. I think his flush set
diamonds and fine finish style would lend itself well to these items.

Go for it!