October 18, 2009

My Jewelry: Part 1

My love all of things vintage began with my engagement ring.  My engagement was not a surprise by any means, as my fiance and I had been talking for awhile about getting married.  My fiance was also hesitant to buy a ring without any guidance from me, worrying that he would not know what I would like, other than not to buy yellow gold as it is not as flattering on me.  I knew I wanted a vintage style and loved this halo ring that I saw at Tiffany & Co:


But I also knew that rings from those chain stores are greatly overpriced, so my fiance and I were referred by a friend to a local jeweler by the name of Edmund D. Schmelzle & Sons in the diamond district of Chicago. 

Long story short, my fiance choose a round diamond, which I actually prefer, and I ended up with the above ring and couldn't be happier.  My advice to ladies and gentlemen when ring shopping is to always go to a diamond district if possible and avoid chain jewelry stores, unless you have money to waste, because the diamond that my fiance bought is actually valued at practically double what he paid!  It is also much better because these jewelers tell you where your diamonds come from, so you can wear it with a clean conscious knowing that you are not getting a cruel "blood diamond."  Most of all, I like the idea that my fiance took the time to custom design something for me.  Everytime I glance down at it I think of him and smile. 

We of course decided to go back to the same jeweler to have our wedding bands made.  I had a band made that matches my engagement ring (though the picture below is taken from Tiffany's, but it looks identical).


But my biggest dilemma was what to do about a necklace.  I was not feeling any of the costume jewelry that the bridal store had put on me when I tried on my dress and veil.  It was too gawdy and I wanted something more classic and simple.  Then I remembered that when my grandmother passed away, she left me her engagement ring.  It was not something I could wear the way it was, so I decided to have the jeweler take the diamond from it and turn it into a necklace.  I found a setting I liked, also from Tiffany's, and he created it using my grandmother's stone. I'm happy that I found a way to have a more green wedding by upcycling an old piece of jewelry instead of buying something new.  Even more, I love that this can not only be my "something old," but that it is also a sentimental piece of jewelry that I can wear long after my wedding day!


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