The wedding ring is often overshadowed by its blingy counterpart, the engagement ring. Let’s be real, people rarely ask to look at this simple band, nor is it usually encountered with the same squeals of delight and awe. Yet arguably, the wedding band is the most meaningful piece of jewelry you’ll ever own.
After all, the engagement ring is a prelude to that other flashy affair – the wedding. But the wedding band signifies your marriage: the rest of your life together. And though the humble wedding band may not have the same sigh-inducing splendor as the engagement ring, it has the dependable strength needed to last a lifetime.
See the symbolism there?
This isn’t to say that wedding bands can’t also be gorgeous in their own right. Just look at these rings if you doubt that:
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Wedding rings also underscore the fair and equal exchange between couples in modern marriages. Shopping for wedding bands together can be one of the first long-term decisions you make as a couple. Whether you opt for matching rings or go with unique styles that highlight your individuality (a la Prince Harry & Meghan), it’s a great exercise in decision-making that will impact you both for a long time. And this experience will be helpful once you’ve tied the knot and need to make other long-term decisions, like how much you want to spend on a house or how many kids you’re going to have.
Here are a few tips to choosing wedding bands as a couple:
1. Assess your personal styles.
Think about your personal styles. Are you daring and trendy while your partner is classic and conservative? Are you really into boho, vintage chic while your partner loves everything modern with clean lines?
If your styles diverge quite drastically, you may want to consider following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s lead and get unique rings that match your individual personalities. If you have your heart set on matching rings, remember that the best compromises are not one-sided and that simplicity can be universally stylish.
2. Consider activities where metals matter.
The durability of a ring varies by its material, so it’s important to take your lifestyle into account. If you like the outdoors and do a lot of things like hiking and rock-climbing, invest in stronger metals like platinum, cobalt chrome, or tungsten carbide.
Pure yellow gold is actually quite malleable, which is why it’s usually alloyed with other metals for strength. Karats describe gold purity, so the higher the number, the softer the material. If your heart is set on a yellow gold wedding band, but you’re afraid that your active lifestyle may be too harsh for it, go for a 14kt yellow gold band. It won’t be as deeply yellow, but it will be more durable.
3. Establish a budget.
One of the most contentious issues in relationships can be money, so this is a great exercise in discussing the subject. Luckily, wedding bands are typically much more affordable than engagement rings even with the inclusion of accent diamonds or other gems. Don’t let anyone tell you how much you ‘should’ spend on wedding rings, just keep in mind this is an investment in something you’ll be wearing every day for many years.
4. Get a feel for what’s out there.
Wedding ring design has come a long way and there are tons of options. While many people purchase their wedding rings from the same place the groom purchased the engagement ring, this should be a mutual decision. Shopping around for rings will help you find just what you both want.
5. Customize it with engraving.
This is one of our favorite ways of taking wedding rings to the next level. This is especially true if you and your partner decide on completely different wedding ring styles. A paired engraving can tie it all together. You’ll find that the best jewelers also offer free engraving services.
Here are a few of our favorite engraving options:
|Ever mine – J.S. (her initials)||Ever thine – E.S. (his initials)|
|I found a reason||The reason is you|
|You and me against the world|
|J.S. + E.S 12.10.18 (wedding date)|
|To have||To hold|
|To infinity…||…and beyond|
More than just a promise to marry, wedding bands are a constant reminder of the commitment you make every day. The circle signifies the never-ending bond you share, and it’s up to you if you want that circle to be simple and elegant, or covered in diamonds, gemstones, or intricate patterns.
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