What, you may ask, is with the squared off shanks?
If you’ve perused the works of KMPLTD sufficiently, you will for sure have noticed the odd bumpy bits at the back of our rings. We still call them bumps, bumpy bits, whatever, so let’s not get too involved in the nomenclature. Suffice it to say that they are not simply a stylistic affectation, they actually do work.
I spent the first few years of my marriage trying to ensure that the diamond in my wedding band stayed on the top of my finger, where it would do the most good. I can fix this, I figured, so I reconfigured the shank with these nifty little bumps. It worked, so I started putting them on all the rings I make. People liked them, so a tradition was created.
Practicalities aside, there is also a subtle status boost contained in the bumps. A ring made this way is somewhat problematic to size up or down extensively. It was made for a specific person, sometimes a specific hand and changing the size can quickly throw off the proportions. I liken it to having cuffs on the pants of a bespoke suit. Real cuffs, as opposed to simply folding the too-long pants up like ‘fifties blue jeans, make it more or less impossible to lengthen or shorten the pants. They were made for you, made perfectly, and require no adjustment. Granted, your legs may get shorter as you age, but by then it’s probably time for a new suit.
Surgeon cuffs are another subtle sign of a custom-made suit. Apparently, back in the day, before infection was seen as any sort of hazard, a surgeon would show up at the hospital, roll up his sleeves, and get to work. In order to keep the gore off his jacket, which he refused to remove for decorum’s sake, the cuff-buttons needed to be functional. This rendered the jacket un-alterable, as with the pants example. If you look closely at a fellow’s sleeves, you can determine whether the suit is off-the-rack or custom-made. If he opted for the Surgeon cuffs, that is. And why wouldn’t he?
How do I know this shit and why should we care? Good question.
That is all.