Mass produced engagement rings are more common than you think!
The vast majority of engagement rings for sale through ‘main street’ jewellers are the result of mass production techniques. An initial model of a design will be created, then all subsequent rings (in their thousands) will be produced using casting methods – gold poured in a mould. These are far from the custom engagement ring designs that many couples would prefer.
What can you do to avoid purchasing a mass produced ring?
If you wish to have direct input into the designing process, it’s better to consult with an experienced and skilled custom jewellery designer / maker.
One of the first questions you will be asked to consider is the colour of the gemstone – the hero of the piece.
Diamonds are often the first preference, but other coloured gemstones are valid – sapphires come in all shapes and a variety of colours – the traditional blue, green, pink or golden (the red variety is called ruby). Aquamarine is also a popular choice – the sky blue, transparency and brightness appeal to many.
Do I have to choose a diamond for my ring?
As opposed to diamond, other gemstones introduce colour and size to help the design be truly unique – to stand out from the crowd. Smaller diamonds, sometimes of different shapes, are introduced to compliment, accentuate and lift the central coloured gemstone. A skilled designer can help you create a ‘one-off’ coloured stone engagement ring that reflects your personality and sense of style.
Another consideration when planning to use a coloured gemstone is the gemmological properties of the particular variety. Because engagement rings are generally worn on a daily basis, durability is a key factor. Diamonds are the hardest of all (with a hardness of 10), sapphire (and ruby) rate next (both alone on 9), while aquamarine (and emerald) have a rating of 7-8. The softer the coloured gemstone, the more likely for it to be damaged or suffer from worn facets over time.
Opal engagement rings are less common – having a hardness rating of 5.5-6.5, they are more prone to damage. There is no doubting that this unique, fiery coloured gemstone can be made into beautiful and unique designs, but they are better suited to dress rings, worn less frequently than an engagement ring.
How will I know if my stone is genuine?
A skilled designer / jeweller should also be qualified as a gemmologist and will bring this knowledge into play when assisting with a design that protects the coloured gemstone. The limitless variety of colours and shapes of sapphires, aquamarines and other coloured gems provide a wonderful opportunity to design a handmade engagement ring, one to treasure forever.
If you would like to book in a FREE consultation for your custom engagement ring, please call us on (03) 9650 3830