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Can You Extend a Baby Bangle?

traditional baby bracelets and bangles
Keepsake baby bangles and bracelets are a tradition in many families. Baby's first precious piece of jewellery in sterling silver or solid 9ct gold is a memorable gift to be treasured. 
Parents, Grandparents, Godparents and Giddy Aunts and Uncles love to celebrate baby's first milestones with a special bangle or bracelet, often engraved with names, dates or a special occasion message.

bluebird braceletSome little keepsakes are designed to be worn just by babies, but it can also be lovely to know that a precious piece of jewellery can be extended for a few years, and in the case of some bracelets, throughout life.

It is easier to extend a baby bracelet than to change the size of a baby bangle... but there are options for both!

What is the difference between a baby bangle and bracelet?

gold baby bangleBracelets and bangles are both worn around the wrist. In Australia, a baby bracelet is a chain and a baby bangle is a solid piece of metal. Both chain bracelets and solid bangles come in many shapes, styles and profiles. 
Chain bracelets are very popular because many can be fastened at different points along the chain and worn by growing wrists. 
When a baby eventually grows out of a bracelet, links can also be added to the end of a bracelet to extend the overall length and it can be worn into childhood or even adulthood.
Bangles are not as easy to extend as a bracelet but there are some options to consider, and for many people, a first baby bangle is a must-have chapter in life's story!



What is the average size for a baby's bangle?

Bangle sizes are measured using the inside diameter of a round bangle. The bangle size required to fit a baby will depend on many factors. Looking at the parents can sometimes give you a little clue - are they fine boned, tall, do they have large hands or are they petite? 
Some bubs will have chubby little hands but their wrists may be tiny. The jewellery industry uses some standard guidelines in Austrtalia (New Baby 41mm inside diameter,  Baby 44mm diameter,  Toddler 47mm diameter) but these can vary widely depending on the baby and if possible it is always best to measure bangle sizes first.  If in doubt it may also be better to get a slightly larger bangle even if it takes a little while for baby to grow into it! 

How do bangles extend?


Extending Bangles

Some bangles are designed to expand (expanding or extendable bangles) by sliding in and out to adjust for size. An expandable bangle has a little overlap of bangle - or a few extra bangle sizes in reserve! 
Expanding baby bangles are a great option as babies grow into toddlers, or toddlers grow into children, however it is important to remember that a bangle will only extend to the ultimate inside diameter size.

Opening BangleS & CUFFs 

Opening, hinged bangles and cuffs don't actually extend in size but they open so they can be put on over the wrist, rather than being pulled on over the hand. 
Having an open or opening bangle for a baby means there will be more scope to continue to fit as baby's hand gets bigger. 



What to do when baby grows out of a solid bangle?

Some people choose to keep tiny baby jewellery as a keepsake reminder of how tiny baby's hands once were. 
Others continue the story of the bangle by passing the bangle on to the next little baby in the family. 
Baby bangles can also be used as keyrings or as a large hoop/ring pendant for an adult - just depending on the style.
In some cases solid bangles can also be sized up by a jeweller.  If the bangle is completely solid, a jeweller can cut and solder in a little piece in the same way a ring is up sized. 
Sturdy, solid bangle can also be cut and reshaped into an oval, open cuff so an older child can continue to wear it.
If the bangle is hollow or patterned it is not always possible to up size a bangle as tubular hollow bangles will flatten where they are cut/soldered and they may not be able to match the pattern if it is a very fancy bangle. 
Whatever you choose to do with your baby bangle it is sure to play a cherished part in the story of someone's life!



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