For some, the wedding overwhelm can start right at the beginning – choosing an engagement ring! Cut, size, custom vs ready made… it’s all a bit confusing right?!
Luckily for you we chatted with Mena from Harry and Co Jewellery. Diamond grader, jewellery designer and owner of Harry and Co, there’s not much that Mena doesn’t know about diamond jewellery! We asked her about the process of custom-making engagement and wedding rings, and found out why it’s an option more and more couples are leaning towards.
What can couples expect when working with you on a custom ring?
When couples come to me looking for a custom ring option it is often because they haven’t been able to find exactly what they are looking for. And there is absolutely no need to compromise when it comes to your engagement ring!
Couples can expect absolute free reign to create or tweak or personalise the ring of their dreams.
They can expect to be educated on all elements of the creating of a ring. From the different metals available, to diamond education about naturally mined diamonds as well as lab grown diamond options.
They can expect a clear and thorough break down of pricing so that they know exactly how much each element is adding to their overall investment and they can then feel confident in manipulating decisions to fit in line with their budget.
We work with couples, individuals who want to work through their own design on their own first, or a partner who wants to work through something as a surprise, and love working within all of these scenarios!
How does the process differ from ‘off the shelf’?
The biggest point of difference, and the reason I love doing what I do, is because this process allows you to create a piece of jewellery, just for them. It isn’t a ring that anyone walking past a shop window could have had. It isn’t a ring sitting in showroom with any old diamond in it. The diamond (or other centre stone) is handpicked just for them, depending on what they value, what they are looking for, what they have been dreaming of.
The design of the ring could be one of our designs and therefore is customised to fit their hand-selected stone and their ring size, or it might be a completely bespoke design that we draw and create just for them. Or we could customise one of our designs in some way to personalise it for them. The custom process is intensely personal, full of sentiment, thoughtfulness and love. It is such an honour to be a part of.
Can you design rings for both of the couple?
We absolutely can. We have been designing a lot of bespoke engagement rings but we also design or customise wedding and eternity rings for men and women. We love our collection of men’s and women’s rings and these are available to be customised or of course we can design something completely bespoke.
We are finding that a lot of women especially, really love the idea of creating their own wedding ring to perfectly fit and complement their engagement ring. We are finding it is a beautiful way to add their own personality to an engagement ring design and it means the ‘bridal set’ of engagement, wedding and sometimes eternity ring all together becomes an absolute work of art.
How long does the process take?
Ah yes! One thing to be aware of for the custom process is that it needs your time and your patience. There are so many variables when it comes to the custom process, so we need to allow a lot of time. For a completely bespoke piece, where we are drawing and designing essentially from scratch, it can take the best part of 8 – 10 weeks. It is also necessary to meet a couple of times to discuss different options and decisions. If we are customising one of our own designs and the changes are minor but the main work comes in hand-selecting gemstones, it can be more like 4 – 6 weeks.
We also have tricks up our sleeve it the prosposal needs to happen ASAP! Never fear!
What price point can couples expect?
This is a very difficult question to answer but understandably one I get asked a lot!
It very much depends on what you are looking for. Our wedding ring and engagement ring pages on our website try to showcase an idea of price, both for lab grown and natural mined diamond options so that is a great place to begin looking for a rough idea of price. Otherwise I would say wedding rings with diamonds are around $1500 and above. Engagement rings really can vary but we’ve worked with budgets of $2,500 up to $25,000. We respect your budget always and it remains confidential.
Finally, what are the benefits of custom design?
The benefit of custom design essentially is that you get exactly what you are looking for!
You don’t have to compromise on elements that you are not necessarily looking for. I think this point of custom design is sometimes overlooked. Different people value different elements of jewellery and with custom, you can really niche down on those details.
For example, platinum traditionally is a premium white metal and comes with a higher price tag than white gold. Platinum might be exactly what someone is looking for in their engagement ring but for others, 14kt White Gold is far more affordable and allows them to put more money into their diamond. In a retail environment, you might find a gorgeous ring that you love, but it is made in platinum and therefore a lot more expensive than it would be in 14kt White Gold. So, you may not be as happy with the diamond size or quality within it. By being able to completely customise the process we would be able to ascertain for you how much your ring would be in both metals and that would allow you a better idea of how much you would like to spend on a diamond.
Custom jewellery doesn’t necessarily have to be more expensive – it gives you greater control over each element of the piece and allows you to spend your money on the parts you want to spend it on – without compromise!