Choosing the Right Rings

How to find the perfect symbol of your love

The wedding band is one of the most widely recognized symbols in the world. This little piece of precious metal sums up what the whole day is about: an endless, unbreakable love. It’s a pretty daunting task to choose bands that will perfectly reflect everything you mean to each other as a couple, but we can help.

Getting down to business
It’s the least romantic part, but still essential - how much should you spend on your wedding bands? The good news is, because most wedding rings are plainer than engagement rings, they’re also less likely to break your budget. There isn’t a hard and fast rule about how much you should spend on your wedding bands. Traditionally, the bride buys the groom’s ring and vice versa. Talk to your significant other about what you can both afford. It might be nice to look back 20 years from now at your less than massive wedding rings and reflect on how far you’ve come together.

Top trends for wedding bands
Over the last few years, white gold and platinum rings have surpassed yellow gold bands in popularity. If you find a band you’re in love with but it’s not in a metal you like, talk to the jeweler. Most stores offer their band designs in a variety of metals. Look at the other pieces of metal jewelry that you own. A platinum band may not be right if you wear mostly yellow gold jewelry. Bands that combine designs of two different colored metals are another popular option.

Vintage and antique rings are going to be big for the next few years. Celebrity couples sporting such rings on their own fingers just might be influencing this trend.
 
Couples with Japanese heritage - and those without - are starting to take notice of Mokume Gane rings. This traditional Japanese metal working was originally used in samurai swords and produces rings fashioned from multiple precious metals for a wood grain appearance. Quite stunning, but difficult to come by, we predict Mokume Gane wedding rings will be the next big thing for couples who want something different.

Designing your own wedding bands is another trend that’s on the rise. While designing your bands costs more than buying existing rings, it’s the ideal way for you and your honey to get exactly what you want. You can find ring designers online, at artisan shows or ask your jeweler for a contact.

Sets appeal
Many engagement rings are designed as part of a set. If your engagement ring has a mate, you can head back to the store where the ring was bought to find it. Some couples like this option and the way the ring set looks. Others want the bride’s and groom’s rings to match, and look for a different design.
 
Rocking out
Traditionally, the engagement ring is all about the sparkle, but many brides - and grooms - opt for wedding bands that also incorporate precious stones. If you plan to wear your wedding band every day, opt for harder stones that are less likely to crack or chip. For rings you’ll wear daily, a good rule is to only buy stones with a rating of 7 or higher on Moh’s scale (a measurement of hardness used by jewelers), like diamonds, sapphires, rubies, emeralds or topaz.

Green scheme
If you and your sweetie are environmentally conscious, look online for planet-friendly jewelers. Green jewelry companies use gem extraction methods that won’t damage the land or endanger ecosystems. Their designs use recycled gold, man-made diamonds and diamond-like stones that are socially responsible.

Thinking outside the ring
If your guy is uncomfortable with the idea of wearing a ring, just remind him that big burly guys beat each other up every year over the sparkly jewelry they get for winning the Super Bowl. He’s still not budging and you’re not interested in a band either? Your ceremony will likely dictate that a ring is necessary so ask if the officiant can reword the vows or buy each other inexpensive rings for $20 or less that are meant as keepsakes. Look at alternate ways of marking your big day with watches, pendants, bracelets or something more permanent like a tattoo.

Your wedding ring is a symbol to the world that you’re taken - and happy about it! Look for bands that you’ll both be pleased and proud to wear for the rest of your lives.

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