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In jewelry design, the shoulder refers to the part of a ring that connects the shank to the setting. It is the sloping area that runs alongside the center stone and can add a decorative element to the ring.

Shoulders can be straight or tapered, and their shape can complement the design of the ring's setting. For example, a vintage-style ring may have elaborate scrollwork on the shoulders, while a more modern design may have clean, straight line.

The shoulder can also be used to add more diamonds or other gemstones to the ring, known as shoulder accents. These stones can be set in various ways, such as pave or channel setting, and can add extra sparkle and visual interest to the ring.

In addition to aesthetics, the shoulder can also play a functional role in the ring's design. A well-designed shoulder can provide additional support for the center stone, helping to hold it securely in place. This is particularly important for larger stones or rings with unusual shapes that require extra support.

Overall, the shoulder is an important element of a ring's design, both aesthetically and functionally. Its shape and style can complement the center stone and enhance the overall look of the ring.