Wedding Rings

Wedding Rings and Engagement Rings

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The Ring is a crucial component to any wedding ceremony and marriage. A ring to symbolize love and enduring fidelity is traditional in a great many cultures. The history and tradition of wedding rings in many countries runs deep - varying from what hand or finger the ring is worn on, the ring-giving ceremony and even how to propose marriage! Look into the traditions of your ancestry for ceremonies and types of rings that will appeal to you personally, for an even more meaningful choice.

It is common for the wedding band and/or the engagement ring to be worn on the ring finger of the left hand (or on the right hand, for some countries). This tradition is thought to have developed from a fanciful or scientific belief that there was the "vena amoris" - a vein "of love" that ran from the ring finger directly to one's heart. This romantic idea guarantees that your beloved has you in their heart when they wear the ring that symbolizes your everlasting love.

There are many things to consider when it comes to deciding the appropriate ring or rings for your special day. Sometimes the Groom has already picked out the Engagement Ring before proposing (some consider this the more traditional way), but often this is a cooperative journey for the new couple. After all, both the Bride and Groom will have their rings for a long time and you should be positive that you will cherish it forever!

Considerations for your wedding rings include:

What type of ring (i.e. engagement rings, wedding bands, trilogy rings)
What kind of ring (gold, silver, platinum, non-traditional metals)
The setting (type of setting, type of stone)

If you're buying a diamond (the practice of buying
diamond wedding rings or especially engagement rings is now extremely common), then you should also consider the "4Cs" of diamonds. These are: Carat, Cut, Clarity and Color. Each "C" describes an overall value of the diamond itself, which in turn will affect how much the diamond (and therefore the ring) costs. All of these factors should be considered when appraising the value of a diamond - don't fall into the trap of looking for a very large diamond and neglecting the other factors!

When looking for a diamond, compare the 4Cs:

CARAT - the diamond's weight. The more carats, the heavier the diamond, the more valuable/expensive.

CUT - how the diamond is cut. This is more a measure of how much light travels through the diamond, allowing to sparkle (scintillation). The more efficiently the light goes through, the more sparkle, the better.

CLARITY - the perfection of the gem. Ranged on a scale from "flawless" to "imperfect." The more natural blemishes a diamond has, the more it is considered "imperfect" and the more the price goes down. However, many imperfections like "inclusions" may not be visible to the naked or untrained eye - which can be a selling point if you're on a budget.

COLOR - the color of the stone. The whiter the stone (actually the more colorless) the more valuable and expensive it is. For fine jewelry like wedding rings, generally colorless diamonds are preferred. There are however colored diamonds (naturally or artificially) that also vary in value. Look to how saturated the gem is with the color, how rare the color is (red, for example, is very rare) and how pure it is - these factors all determine the price.

If you are buying a diamond engagement ring, it is common for the Bride to continue to wear it, along with the wedding band that she will receive during the ceremony. This wedding band most often directly matches the Groom's (2 gold bands, 2 silver bands).

In addition to engagement rings and wedding rings, there are a multitude of other choices these days, such as promise rings, trilogy rings and eternity rings. This is all up to you - decide what is the most meaningful and most importantly within reach!

Whatever you decide before shopping, make sure that you are well informed, prepared and willing to keep looking. This is an important investment and should fully represent your love for ages to come!

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