Wedding rings are a tangible representation of a married couple’s promise to love and cherish each other for the rest of their days. While the design of wedding rings have evolved with time, their essence in modern society has remained constant. Wedding rings have always been circular–a feature that makes them an ideal symbol of “forever.” A circle has no beginning or end; therefore, this jewelry represents the infinity of a marriage. It is eternal, just like the way love should be.
Some say that the origins of engagement rings date back to the time of Ancient Egyptians. These people held the belief that the left finger had a vein connected straight to the heart, so it’s only rightful for the ring to be worn there. As for the first documented evidence of engagement rings, it occurred in 1477, when Archduke Maximilian of Austria commissioned a gold diamond ring to give to his love, Mary of Burgundy. This move started a trend of giving diamond rings among European aristocrats and nobility.
How are Wedding Bands Made?
In the olden days, people manually forged wedding rings by heating and hammering a piece of metal repeatedly until it takes the shape of a circle. But with the rise of modern technology, this process is now replicated using powerful machinery. A piece of metal bar, such as gold or platinum, is put under extreme amounts of pressure using a bending machine until it reaches the desired shape and size.
Both ends of the band are connected to complete the circle, with its ends soldered using a filler of the same metal. A gelatinous substance called flux paste is applied to the ring to prevent oxidation and discoloration during the soldering process. After that, the ring is dipped into a weak acidic solution to remove any excess flux paste on it. It will then undergo some polishing and buffing before the finished product is released.
Famous Wedding Ring Makers Online
If you’d like to choose from a broader range of styles, shopping for your wedding ring online is the best thing you can do. In fact, many couples find it more convenient and less stressful than going to a store. Plus, you’re most likely to spot more affordable pieces online! Here’s a list of the most reputable sellers of wedding bands—and jewelry, in general—on the internet right now.
If you’re the type of couple who wants to explore different wedding ring styles, you should go for this brand. From classic plain bands to curved pave bands, Blue Nile has it. There are hundreds of modern and traditional rings on their website, ranging in price from $96 to $30,000.
This Brooklyn-based store is home to the most unique and tradition-defying wedding bands you’ll ever see. You won’t spot any plain rings here; even their most “simple” design has a twist on it. Their offerings are from actual jewelry designers and brands, so expect to see a lot of variety on their website. Catbird sells wedding rings at prices ranging from $230 to $6,000.
If you’re active, travels often, or use your hands to do a lot at work, wedding rings from Roq are your best bet. This brand offers inexpensive and flexible silicone rings that come in a bunch of different styles and colors, including ones that are metallic and glittery! The silicone they use is hypoallergenic and medical-grade, so your skin won’t likely have an adverse reaction. Roq’s prices start at $6.99.
If you don’t feel confident shopping for jewelry without getting to see them in person, you will benefit from Ritani’s services. With their extensive network of jewelry store partners around the country, you can preview your ring before purchasing. It’s an excellent time-saver because you only see the styles you pick out online. Plus, you get to see how the ring looks on your finger. Ritani’s wedding rings range from $160 to $60,000.
If you want to defy convention and don a wedding ring that looks nothing like everyone else’s, Holden is the perfect brand for you. With this retailer, you can customize your ring and choose the metal, width, finish, and engraving that go into it. While many might think that having jewelry customized is expensive, it’s not the case for Holden. Their prices range between $179 and $1,299.
Wedding Ring Trends
It might be a bit overwhelming shopping for the perfect wedding band, especially if you don’t have any knowledge about jewelry. There are so many options to choose from these days that it’s hard to pick out the best one. Looking at current jewelry trends is certainly helpful for this kind of dilemma. Below, we round up the wedding ring trends to watch out for in 2020.
Minimalist wedding rings are tiny and understated. They usually come in narrow plain gold or studded with small diamonds. The great thing about simple wedding bands is that they typically match almost any other ring you have on.
The pink tinge of rose gold adds warmth to any piece of jewelry and pairs beautifully with all other metals. That’s why they always say you can never go wrong with rose gold!
This sought after trend involves wearing several wedding rings at once. What makes this style so appealing is its symmetry: brides like the idea of “sealing in” their engagement rings with two wedding rings.
A curved wedding ring is custom fit to match the curvature of your engagement ring, especially around its main setting. Remember that these types of wedding bands must always be worn with an engagement ring. Otherwise, it can look out of place.
This might seem old-fashioned to some, but having matching wedding rings is incredibly romantic! Find one or two design elements that you both love and look for rings that have those features.
Weddings Ring Prices
According to a study conducted by The Knot, the average cost of a female wedding ring in 2019 is $1,100 for women. For males, it was $510. As for the material, women preferred white gold while men chose tungsten.
Pros and Cons of Wedding Ring Metals
There are many wedding ring materials out there, but the ones we often see are made of metal. The most common wedding ring metals include gold, platinum, silver, tungsten, and titanium. Since metals are often the default choice, let’s examine the pros and cons of each.
This metal comes in different varieties, such as white, yellow, and rose gold. Each of these types has its unique qualities and is known to retain its value. Gold alloys often contain nickel or copper–metals that people are often allergic to. Also, gold requires occasional maintenance. You might need to have your piece replated or polished after a decade of wear to restore its beauty.
Platinum wedding bands are the definition of luxury. This metal is one of the most durable metals in the world, so it requires little to no maintenance. It has a light silver color and shine that gives it a sophisticated and modern appearance. Its only drawback is that it’s the most expensive of all options.
Sterling silver pieces resemble the appearance of platinum, so they’re an excellent choice for couples who want a luxurious look for less. However, you should keep in mind that this metal requires the most upkeep. If you aren’t careful, your silver rings can scratch and tarnish quickly. If you’re looking for low-maintenance wedding bands, stay away from silver and opt for a more durable material.
This is the most common metal used for men’s wedding bands. It’s strong and low-maintenance, so it’s the perfect choice for people who work with their hands a lot. Tungsten is also tarnish-proof and scratch-resistant. The only downside of this material is that it’s very brittle and can’t be resized.
This metal shares many similarities with tungsten, but it costs less. Titanium is lightweight, easy to wear, and can be found in many different shades ranging from light gray to nearly black grey. Like tungsten, they are generally not resizable.
Buying In-Store vs. Buying Online
If you plan on shopping for a wedding ring, you might be wondering: is it better to buy online or in-store?
Actually, each channel has its own benefits. If you buy online, the selections are endless; you get to compare offerings from different merchants. Plus, you don’t have to worry about dealing with pushy salespeople. Online vendors also sell diamond rings at lower prices since they save on overhead costs.
On the other hand, If you’re buying in-store, you get exactly what you want as you can see the wedding ring you’re purchasing. Plus, you’ll have the answers to all your questions. Also, despite the convenience of buying online and having diamond consultants who are just a chat away, nothing beats having personal interaction.