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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Diamonds On the Soles Of Her Shoes

Lately I've had engagement rings on the mind...no I'm not getting married (nor am I even seeing someone), but I think one of my friends is on the verge of taking the plunge. What is really making me think though, is her stance (and others) against a traditional wedding ring. Her dislike for the diamond ring stems not from financial reasons, but some other very important issues to note.
With the diamond industry being what it is, can anyone buy a diamond with a clear conscience? It's hard to find diamonds that are free of the tarnish of rebel conflict. Purchasing a diamond haphazardly could lead to the unintentional funding of of conflict and human rights abuser.
Another reason is that the diamond engagement ring lacks originality and a personal touch. A diamond ring can indicate lack of thought towards the bride's personality--is she just like every other woman on the market; do we all want the same thing?
For my friend she desires a vintage ring, possibly a cameo, a piece with history and personality that she will be delighted to wear for the rest of her life. Another lady I know chose coral for her ring, something that was once part of a living thing.
For me, it's hard to imagine the ring when I can't imagine the man...engagement, ring, diamond, cameo, vintageengagement, ring, diamond, cameo, vintage

13 comments:

enc said...

Vintage, antique, or family heirlooms are a really beautiful way to enjoy the engagement ring tradition without feeling uncomfortable. Careful research will help you to know exactly what you're getting into. Or not getting into.

WendyB said...

Yes, you can buy conflict-free diamonds. It's a myth that they are all tainted somehow. I only buy from a source that guarantees in writing that my diamonds are legitimately purchased, which isn't all that hard to do since a majority of diamonds still come from South Africa, Russia and Australia. Diamonds are suitable for everyday wear because they're the hardest stone. Softer stones (and extremely fragile, porous materials like coral) are much more prone to damage. If you read my recent post on how to care for precious item, you will see examples of how badly people treat their fine jewelry and what kind of damage that treatment can cause. And I absolutely think you can design a beautiful, special and unique diamond ring if you care to put the effort into it. Incidentally, one material I don't use is coral, because why should I help decimate the coral reefs?

chrissy05 said...

Wow, Wendy had a good point. The world's reefs are slowly disappearing. Secondly though, I though some conflict diamonds DID come from South Africa? Lastly, I have a ring that I wear...$7.99 from a clothing store. It is my favorite ring..and it's not even sterling silver. It's a simple band that is small under the finger and widens to half inch on top. The top edges flare up a bit like a concave look. I love it! If my boyfriend were to make it into white gold, or even platinum, it would be all the "bling" I need! It's gorgeous!

WendyB said...

By definition, conflict diamonds are mined in a war zone, to fund war activities. South Africa is not a war zone. Affected countries included Angola, Sierra Leone, Liberia, the Ivory Coast and Congo.

chrissy said...

Sorry Yes, I was thinking the Congo, not South Africa. Everyone should watch the movie Blood Diamond. http://blooddiamondmovie.warnerbros.com/
Really opens your eyes. (Which was filmed in South Africa..so that may have been where my thoughts came from).

Sarah said...

that's interesting about conflict diamonds, but I really love the cameo ring!

the iron chic said...

Controversy!
I want an onion ring.....

In Yr Fshn said...

Clothes Horse, I will be doing an engagement ring post next week, but you reminded me to include something on the woman's wishes in terms of traditionalism...
Thank you madam.

Bouncing Evil Ginner said...

How about still getting a diamond but a vintage one? I still quite like the symbolism of the diamond, particularly as it'd likely be the only diamond I'd ever wear (good thoughts about conflict diamonds, I was thinking in more of a "I can't afford that" sentiment though. Also, I'd rather spend money on clothes than jewellery).

Sarah said...

It's funny that you posted about engagement rings, because I was just thinking about them the other day. I'd love to have an engagement ring in a different stone than a diamond. Diamonds are just so common in my opinion. I'd like an amethyst, I think, antique over modern. We'll see when the time comes...

copperoranges said...

my boyfriend asked me about diamonds and engagement rings awhile ago (hmmm what is he up to?? i am too young to get married!), but despite the fact that the diamond industry created the concept of the engagement ring so that there would be no market for resale and the history of the diamond industry's shady involvement with perpetuating violence ... i still want a big fat rock. i think wendy is right - now you can buy conflict free diamonds, and i think it is possible to design a unique and beautiful ring.

Silvana said...

I have a major conundrum when it comes to rings. I don't like the traditional styles. Solitaires make me cringe. But My birth stone is diamond. I am also clumsy and have scratched up so many gem stones on rings that anything less tough would be terrible for me.
I am one of those on the verge of requiring an engagement ring types. and have done TONS of research on rings. I have yet to find a ring I love. One option I have considered for financial reasons could also be used when dealing with worries about diamonds. Have a ring made with a similar gem like white sapphire and then have the gem replaced sometime later on in the marriage.

The original stone can be used for a new special piece of jewelry, and you can find a good source for a replacement diamond.

You can also reset an old gem in a new setting to suit your taste

(R)evolver74 said...

I love cameos and the cameo ring is lovely!

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