Brief (but exciting!) update…

On Saturday I am going to The Wedding Shop to try on a dress I had them order in from the designer… I first went to them to try on dresses many months ago and had a lovely experience. To say I’m excited would be an understatement. I’ve literally been too excited to sleep some nights! Ridiculous I know. Hopefully it won’t be a massive disappointment on Saturday. It’s the dress I keep looking at, that ticks an awful lot of boxes in terms of it suiting me (in theory) and the one I’ve put off looking at because I thought I’d easily find something else in all the other millions of shops I’ve looked in… But after trying on over 37 dresses now I still haven’t found ‘The One’ or even ‘nearly The One’ so all my hopes, rightly or wrongly, are pinned on this dress… I don’t have a plan B yet, here’s hoping I won’t need one!

My wedding dress. Not.

My wedding dress. Not.

Perhaps rather bizarrely I’ve been having nightmares about the loos at The Barn Brasserie. I kept dreaming I couldn’t fit in the loo to go or that I had to go in the dodgy disabled loo that didn’t lock properly… All very strange. I decided it was about time I checked the loos out (I know I’m sad, I know I’m weird for worrying about these things!) and so husband-to-be and I went for a meal there last night which was absolutely delicious and I’m euphoric to say that the loos are possibly the nicest I’ve ever seen anywhere! And they are big – clearly designed for brides. Thank Jesus for that.

The Barn Brasserie

The Barn Brasserie

As well as trying on the dress I’ve been lusting after for months, I’m also going to see David on Saturday. My rings have come back from the engravers and I get to see the designs! I have to say I’m both excited and scared about seeing them. What if I don’t like them? Only time will tell… I will try and get photos!

After much designers angst I have at last finalised my ‘Save the Date’ design and have been liaising with the local printing company about getting them printed up. We’re looking at magnets and postcards at present. If postcards are much cheaper then we’ll go for those.

I went to Wivenhoe House today at lunchtime to take a look at all their lovely rooms (the suites and luxury suites are all decorated differently you see). I got a tour of the place and fell in love with one of the rooms (I can’t tell you too much here as it will be a surprise for husband-to-be). I have fired off an e-mail so hopefully we should be able to book it.

Wivenhoe House Hotel superior room

Wivenhoe House Hotel superior room

Exciting times!

Wedding rings!

As you know, David White of White Designs is designing me a wedding ring to sit under my rather unusual engagement ring.

e-ring_small

My engagement ring

After discussions here’s what he has come up with so far:

Wedding band - first draft

Wedding band – first draft

Wedding ring - second draft

Wedding ring – second draft

The ring above the e-ring is to show where an eternity band could potentially sit.

I have to confess to being less-than-enamoured with the idea of including hearts in the design but he has promised to engrave several designs (on silver rings that will be identical, shape and size-wise, to the finished ring) with and without hearts, so we shall see! I can’t wait to see what he comes up with!

Vince still has his heart set on a meteorite ring. David warned us that we wouldn’t be able to resize the ring and that titanium is difficult to work with.

Meteorite ring made and sold by Jewelry by Johan on Etsy

David also raised concerns regarding rust so I’ve contacted the seller to ask about longevity, rust and sizing.

Quick wedding ring update

Okay, so Plan A was to go to Carats in Ipswich to talk to them about a bespoke ring. However, my friend very recently had her engagement ring repaired there and she was really unhappy with the results (scratches, ring is wonky, fracture still visible) so I e-mailed round at work for recommendations and have been assured by several people that David White of White Designs Jewellery is  really excellent. He is also, very conveniently, literally 8 minutes away from where I live. I’ve contacted him to make a date.

So, my new and improved Plan A! I’m very excited indeed, will keep you posted!

Wedding rings part deux…

I’m going to skim very quickly over the fact I haven’t posted for some time, and instead talk to you about wedding rings. Specifically, my wedding ring.

As you know, the setting of my engagement ring is rather unusual:

Marquise diamond solitaire engagement ring

My engagement ring

Since my last post about wedding rings I’ve been doing some serious research.

The bog-standard, reasonably priced ‘solution’ to my wedding ring dilemma can be supplied to me by Mad About Diamonds where my lovely fiancé got my engagement ring from:

The shaped wedding ring designed to fit my engagement ring

I can highly recommend Mad About Diamonds actually, not only do they offer excellent value for money but I’m told by my fiancé that their customer service is excellent too.

Okay, so that’s the tidy, easy and relatively cheap solution. If I were less picky and less jewellery-obsessed, my post would end here…

Why don’t I like the shaped ring? I want a ring I can wear on its own if I want to, I don’t just want a band of shaped metal for the sake of it. Fussy, yes I am.

I’m a great lover of Etsy and in my state of anxiety I contacted a seller in the US, Laurie Sarah Designs, to see what they could suggest, if anything. I have to say, they’ve been absolutely amazing. In short, they’ve offered to create me a bespoke 18ct white gold wishbone ring (that fits exactly under my engagement ring), from scratch, for around £800. That includes engraving too, and their engraving is the best I’ve seen:

http://www.etsy.com/listing/100049104/intricately-hand-engraved-mans-wedding

Engraved wedding ring by Laurie Sarah Designs

I would really love to use Laurie Sarah Designs as they’ve been amazingly patient with me, but there are logistical issues as they are based in the US. Firstly, they’ll need my engagement ring to ensure the wishbone sits as it should with it. I don’t want to post it over there so I’d probably try and make a cast of it (by making a silicone mould first and then filling it with resin to create a fake ring). Secondly, and more importantly, I am anxious about not being able to visit them easily in person to see what they are creating and to try on casts they make etc. They might be able to post them to me, but ultimately it isn’t ideal.

At the weekend I went to Hatton Garden with my equally jewellery-obsessed bridesmaid Annika. Only two shops really stood out. The first shop I visited was Anthony Gray Ltd and they came up with the following suggestions:

Twist band with diamonds from Anthony Gray Ltd, Hatton Garden

Not bad at all. The next is a similar ring but without the diamonds and I think I like it a bit more:

Twist band from Anthony Gray Ltd, Hatton Garden

Doesn’t look bad, does it? However, the cost is what got me. Both rings from Anthony Gray Ltd cost more than Laurie Sarah Designs quoted to make me a ring from scratch.

Whilst at Anthony Gray Ltd I also tried on an Ungar and Ungar floral band. A bit pricey at over £1k but beautiful I’m sure you’ll agree:

Ungar and Ungar floral band (8wr328-dd)

Unfortunately it looked completely daft with my engagement ring, unsurprisingly. Probably just as well, given £1k was considerably more than I wanted to spend.

The Wedding Ring Shop in Hatton Garden was another promising shop. They sell bespoke rings too, and have samples you can try on displayed around the shop which makes for a very nice shopping experience. They did have a couple of engraved rings I quite liked and they told me they would create a wishbone for me with engraving on for around the £800 mark, pretty reasonable I thought. Only downside is that you have to pick from one of the designs they have (you can’t get them to recreate one you’ve seen) and I have no idea how their designs would work on a wishbone. Still, I would consider returning there if my Plan A falls through.

Okay, given all this, what the hell is my current Plan A?

There is a jewellers in Ipswich (not far from me) called Carats who make bespoke wedding rings. I e-mailed them and they quoted me for a plain 18ct gold bespoke wishbone, under £600 they tell me. They have an engraver apparently who they’d need to contact separately for a quote for engraving, and of course how much the engraving costs depends on what pattern I want… So, Plan A is to go to Ipswich and see them in person, have a chat and hopefully get a better idea of cost and feasibility. I would also be interested to hear of any other ideas they have regarding a wedding ring too.

So that’s my plan A. I will keep you posted!

P.S. I realise I sound like a complete Bridezilla here, but the truth is I worry aloud on here so that in real life I can seem composed about the wedding, honest 😉

Wedding rings – my latest obsession

As you may have gathered from my first post, I am a bit of a jewellery geek (read: obsessed). I have one of those fabulous anti-tarnish jewellery cabinet mirrors from QVC. It’s a wall-mounted shallow cabinet with a mirror on the front and I love filling it up with gorgeous, sparkly, pretty things. Anyways, I digress…

So, I have been thinking about wedding rings and to my surprise, so has V. He has never been much of a fan of jewellery, he doesn’t wear necklaces, doesn’t have an ear pierced, he doesn’t even wear a watch (although there are times when I wish he would!) I had always imagined he’d end up with a plain gold band wedding ring and that would be that. However, to my surprise he actually went online, did some research and actually found a couple of rings he really likes.

This gear ring is the first one he found, available from Kinekt Design.

Kinekt ring

Very cool I’m sure you’ll agree, but not entirely practical. The cogs turn and everything, you should check out the video on the Kinect website.

V is very into science fiction and the next ring he stumbled upon was space-related.

This ring is available from Jewelry Designs for Men. The downsides are that it is quite a fussy ring (for someone who lives in jeans and a T-shirt and never wears jewellery). It’s also quite pricey at $4,200… 😐

Then I stumbled upon another meteorite ring on Etsy by a US seller called Johan Rust (username: jewelrybyjohan):

Meteorite ring

I got geek points for finding this one as it is meteorite and titanium. It’s also fairly affordable and V seemed keen (for him) so he may well settle on this one…

For myself, well… I saw the most gorgeous white gold engraved ring on Brilliant Earth.

Downsides:

  • It’s expensive.
  • It comes from the USA (I live in the UK).
  • I have no idea what US ring size I am.
  • My engagement ring would probably look a bit odd with it to say the least…

I do, however, love it so I’ve contacted the company who did my engagement ring (they do custom orders too) to see if they’ll give me an idea of price. Hopefully they could shape the ring so it sits beneath my engagement ring, although having a shiny setting and a more matt setting will probably look really odd. And my engagement ring setting is quite rounded whereas the Brilliant Earth ring is much more square. And it’ll probably cost millions. I’m probably being ridiculous. I hadn’t imagined budgeting much for wedding rings at all and here I am looking at a custom engraved wedding ring.

I can feel myself heading into chocolate gateaux territory. Sigh.