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Engagement Season Is Upon Us

Sorry about the lateness of the posting. Things – particularly weather and some spotty power access – happened.

Anyway.

I thought you might all find it interesting to learn a little bit of trivia. Did you know that roughly 40% of all marriage proposals take place between the months of November and February? And the most popular time to propose marriage is Christmas?

Here are a couple other burning questions about engagement you probably never thought to ask. (more…)

Lost and Found


It’s a good thing Vicki Belanger hasn’t moved house in seventeen years.

You see, seventeen years ago, Belanger’s siser, Valerie Lynch was putting sunscreen on her two very small children and her young nephew, all of whom were under the age of five, before heading off to a waterfront outing. She was doing this in Belanger’s back yard. As a precaution, she slipped off her wedding and engagement rings and put them aside on a platform next to the swing set.

Unfortunately, she forgot to put her rings back on before they left.

When Lynch discovered her rings were missing, she raced back to her sister’s house only to find… she couldn’t find them. About a year and a half later, Belanger found Lynch’s wedding ring, but not the diamond engagement ring.

And that’s where matters stood until October 28 of this year. By then, Belanger had met up with Kent Blethen, a jewelry hunting enthusiast. Belanger told him of her sister’s missing ring and Blethen offered to help her look for it.
(more…)

Selecting Designer Engagement Rings: Art Deco Engagement Rings

Although engagement ring styles seem to remain untouched during decades, with the dawn of each new fashion season there is a plethora of new, fascinating, exciting and sometimes extravagant and very offbeat freshtrends. It goes without saying that some of them will fade away quickly, while the others will become popular for years. Selecting an engagement ring is an entire ordeal for many men, since the modern market is abound with various engagement ring styles and designs. At first sight, the selection of engagement rings offered both online and at conventional ‘brick-and-mortar’ jewelry stores may be very overwhelming. However, if you know at least a few criteria for an engagement ring of her dreams, you can unhesitatingly start your ring hunt.

Designer Rings

Of course, it is a good idea to stick to traditions, especially the meaningful ones. However, when it comes to rings, especially engagement ones, it happens to be a matter of taste. Solitaire rings with high settings featuring impeccable Asscher or Princess cut diamonds are probably the most popular engagement rings today. Yet, on a par with conventional forms and cuts, there exist unusual, offbeat rings created especially for those women who like to make experiments and like to be different in the style choices. That is where designer rings come into play. Designer pieces not only are unique ornaments, but oftentimes true masterpieces. Today’s designer rings market can offer you the greatest selection of rings for all tastes, of ‘all shapes and sizes’. Designer rings are a perfect option for those men who are looking for an unusual and very distinctive engagement ring.

The Most Popular Designer Ring Styles

Modern jewelry style gurus offer the mixture of styles and forms in their engagement rings lines. Some of the designers embody in their pieces the most innovative ideas involving the revolutionary techniques and materials, as well as futuristic shapes and colors. Others tend to look back in time in search of inspiration: the employ Edwardian and Victorian hints and subtle details in their works. One of the most distinctive design ring styles today is probably Art Deco. Strong geometric forms, lines and symmetry are what Art Deco designers strive for in their engagement rings. Keep reading to learn more on this particular style.

Art Deco Engagement Rings

The Art Deco period (1925-1939) was a very fruitful design movement that gave the humanity some of the most intriguing designs in architecture, home interior, furniture, cars and of course, jewelry. Unlike Art Nouveau with its softness and natural motifs, Art Deco was all about glamour, chic and modernity. Art Deco design can be easily told by its distinctive geometric forms, symmetry and vivid, contrasting colors.

Although the designer movement began in Paris, in terms of jewelry, the art deco engagement ring trend was established in Monaco, with Grace Kelly, the Princess of Monaco. Soon, it was influenced from all over the world: engagement rings incorporated elements of Hindu, Oriental designs and Mayan patterns. Artists also borrowed some ideas from actual archaeological discoveries: they used blue faience, glazed ceramics, face masks and scarabs in their engagement rings designs.

Modern Art Deco engagement rings feature the following characteristics:

  • They employ bold geometric forms. The center stones have bold triangular, square and round shapes. Some artists experiment with more shapes, employing new forms, such as kites, baguettes and trapezoids.

  • They have symmetric forms. Symmetry is one of the Art Deco keystones. Although it is highly prized, symmetry is often lost in terms of coloration.

  • They incorporate different precious and semi-precious gems, such as sapphires, diamonds, black opals, corals, emeralds, rubies, mother-of-pearls, jades, as well as quartz crystals.

Another characteristic of Art Deco engagement rings is a filigree work which is so detailed and sophisticated, that the rings look like real mini jewelry masterpieces. Usually, the craftsmanship and quality of these rings is much higher than most modern engagement rings. As rule, Art Deco designer rings are larger than standard engagement rings due to their multiple gems and filigree work. When shopping for an Art Deco engagement ring, you can either buy a reproduction ring or search for original, antique one with its incomparable atmosphere and history. Check out our assortment of designer engagement rings for the most intriguing and vintage styles for your fiancée.

Guest post written by Dennis Polishchuk from Whiteflash.com, Houston jewelry store.

Rings That Never Lock

Are you a fellow Stargate fan?

Whether your Jack and Daniel look like this:

… or like this:

(and for the record, I swing both ways)

… this could be the wedding ring for you:

Best of all? The chevrons spin!

Jennifer’s Rock, or You Can’t Win for Losing


See Jennifer Aniston. See her fiance, Justin Theroux. See the eight carat rock on her ring finger.

Look, if you’ve been reading this blog for more than a week you know my longstanding distaste for diamonds. They aren’t my thing. Never have been, never will be. And yet, I stand utterly mystified and completely annoyed at the general reaction to Jennifer Aniston’s new engagement ring.

Why? Because so many people are lining up to hate on it so for being too big, too gaudy, and not understated enough.

Look, I’m well aware that Jennifer Aniston is known for her trademark sleek, simple, girl-next-door-taken-to-eleven fashion sense. I know this ring is the opposite of girl next door. I know people expected her to sport a sleek, simple, super-tasteful ring.

But when I look at the design of this ring, I see that one spectacular, over the top accessory that really makes a super simple outfit. It’s really a very simple ring, except for the size of the stone. And even if I didn’t see that, it wouldn’t be up to me to judge that ring.

I don’t know whether Theroux chose it on his own, if Jennifer chose it herself, or if they collaborated on the decision. That – like the price tag – is between them and their jeweler. Whatever the case, she seems happy to wear it. And that – combined with an ability to pay the jeweler’s bill, which I’m not terribly worried about with this couple – is what matters.

Besides, just a few months ago, the same yet opposite chatter accompanied the appearance of the ruby and diamond engagement ring Facebook founder Mark Zucker gave his lady love, Patricia Chen. He designed it himself, taking into account her Chinese heritage and her upcoming career as a doctor as well as, presumably, her taste, and style mavens across the world howled in angry disdain that he had (according to their assumptions) spent so little cold, hard cash on the hardware. If Chen is going to practice medicine, the sort of ring they wanted Zucker to buy her would have just gotten in the way… and probably been denounced as too gaudy, anyway.

Jennifer Aniston is not a doctor treating patients. She is an actress. She’ll mostly leave her engagement ring off when working, and it’ll look good on a red carpet. If she likes it and Theroux likes it, there’s no reason on earth they should change it.

Ultimately, if the ring works for everyone involved in the engagement, it works. If the person giving it can’t afford to do so or the person wearing it hates it, that’s when you’ve got a problem.

Big or small, diamond or no, gaudy or plain, can’t we just love the symbolism without worrying so much about the price tag or whether it seems like a departure from a signature style?

My ring makes me happy. Her ring apparently makes her happy.

That really ought to be enough.

LOVE/HATE: Diamond in the Rough

I’ve never been a fan of diamonds. When I read Anne of Green Gables for the first time at the tender age of ten, I knew I had met a kindred spirit when she talked about how disappointed she was the first time she saw a diamond and it wasn’t the brilliant purple of amethyst as she’d imagined. By the time I’d read my way far enough in the series for Anne to get engaged to Gilbert (Spoiler!), I was very much in favor of her choice of a pearl for an engagement ring.

When Mr. Twistie and I set the date, I did Anne one better and got a ring with no stone whatsoever. I love my sterling silver frog prince and wouldn’t exchange him for all the tea in China, let alone all the diamonds in South Africa. At least I do drink tea.

But there’s a trend in engagement rings that has very nearly turned my feelings about diamonds upside down: uncut diamonds.

This ring by Bario-Neal features a rough diamond flanked by a combination of yellow sapphires and citrine. Depending on the size of the diamond (.5 – 1.0ct) and choice of metal (yellow gold, rose gold, white gold, or platinum) it runs between $2,050 and $3,524.

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE this ring. I like the fact that there’s an understated elegance to the main stone, and, yes, I do have a bit of a thing for citrine. I like yellow. One of the things I’ve always liked least about diamonds is one of the things that everyone else seems to prize most about them: the aggressive sparkle. I’m not a sparkly person. In this case, the sparkle is mitigated and I’m delighted.

My silver frog is still very much my favorite engagement ring of all time, and in no danger even if Mr. Twistie could afford to spend two or three grand on something that doesn’t need replacing. All the same, if I were getting engaged today instead of back when I did… I might be tempted to look at this or something very like it. I’m not afraid of my jewelry looking dated someday, nor of standing out from a crowd. I’m not much exercised about traditions that were created mostly by companies that profit from the creation of the tradition. I just know what I like, and I like this a lot.

So what say you? LOVE it? HATE it? Something else? Tell me what you think!

No, No, It’s the Dress You Trash!


A lot of women have the recurring fear that they will lose their wedding or engagement ring in a bizarre plumbing accident… but not many imagine they’ll accidently throw it away.

Well, that’s how Danielle Carroll lost her wedding band.

Carroll, an artist, was taking a painting class in Battery Park in New York City. At the end of class, everyone threw their rags into a plastic garbage bag brought along for the purpose. Carroll says she had been using a ‘slippery hand cleaner’ right before she disposed of her rag, and believes that this is when her wedding ring slipped off her finger unnoticed.

It was actually Carroll’s second wedding ring. Her husband bought her the band with nine diamonds for their tenth anniversary last year, to replace the one she’d already lost.

In the wee hours of the morning, Carroll realized her ring was gone and attempted to sneak out of her apartment to go looking for it without her husband being any the wiser. As it turns out, he woke up and joined her for the search.

When she got to the trash can where she thought the garbage bag had been thrown, though, it turned out sanitation workers had already emptied it out. Undaunted, Carroll spotted a garbage truck nearby with nobody in it. She left a note that read:

‘Hello, I believe my wedding ring is in this truck….please call me to tell me where this truck is going,’

The driver of the truck, Gary Gaddist, called Carroll when he returned and said he would look for the ring.

So Gaddist searched through garbage bags at Randall’s Island until he found the one with Carroll’s ring in it.

Asked why he went the extra mile, he said:

It’s a love thing.

Gary Gaddist, Manolo for the Brides salutes you. You were willing to wade through garbage to help a stranger find her wedding ring. That’s not something you see every day.

So, my dear readers, if any of you ever lose your wedding or engagement ring and think it might have slipped into a garbage can, you know the super sanitation worker to call!

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