Wedding Rings – The Most Romantic Symbols Of Wedding Unity
From the sparkling promise of everlasting love engagement rings evoke, to the unending circle of eternal commitment that a wedding band is reflective of, these pieces of jewelry are also among some of the oldest and most traditional parts of wedding culture and history.
In fact, some of the earliest recorded exchanges of wedding rings occurred in Ancient Egypt, well over 4,600 years ago. In Ancient Rome, the acceptance of a wedding ring was a legal, binding agreement for a woman that she was no longer free. In fact, some of the earliest recorded exchanges of wedding rings occurred in Ancient Egypt, well over 4,600 years ago. In Ancient Rome, the acceptance of a wedding ring was a legal, binding agreement for a woman that she was no longer free. It was also in Italy, during the Renaissance, when ornately decorated engagement rings surfaced.
Where you wear your wedding rings and how they are given during the wedding ceremony are usually guided by religious beliefs or geographical location. In the United States, engagement and wedding rings are traditionally worn on the left hand, while some European and Latin cultures dictate that wedding rings be worn on the right hand. Wedding rings are placed on the forefinger of the bride during Jewish ceremonies and in Elizabethan England, they were placed on the thumb during the wedding rites.as also in Italy, during the Renaissance, when ornately decorated engagement rings surfaced.
The wearing of wedding bands by men is a modern revelation. Thought to have become popular during World War II, soldiers wore these rings as a reminder of their loved ones during the separation while serving their country.
Choosing an engagement ring can be an extremely exciting experience. Some grooms choose to go this road alone, while others may shop for this very special piece of jewelry with a close friend, family member, and sometimes, even the bride. Some basic rules apply whichever route is taken: choose a reputable jeweler; do your research in terms of stones, shapes, and settings; and don’t forget to set a budget for yourself for the purchase.
There are just about as many styles of engagement rings as there are brides. The most intrinsic part of an engagement ring is the stone—it is also the part of the ring that gives it its value as well as its beauty. Modern tradition makes the stone most commonly a diamond, though sapphires, which symbolize fidelity, have the longest history as an engagement ring stone. A blend of diamonds and colored stones can combine for a truly stunning engagement ring.
The style of an engagement ring is often determined by the shape, size, and cut of the stone. Many judge a ring’s worth by the number of carats of the stone, but it is also the cut of the diamond or gem, which brings the stone its fire and sparkle, and the original clarity of the stone that contribute to its overall value. The shape of the stone gives the ring its overall style. There are many shapes and cuts of stone including round solitaire; rectangular radiant cuts; emerald; marquise; oval; and pear to consider. When choosing a stone, go back to the basics: color, clarity, cut, and carat. Popular stone trends include colored diamonds such as those in pink (very rare and expensive—pink sapphires are a more reasonable substitute) and yellow as well as the square princess diamond. Another current favorite style is three-stone rings.
In addition to making sure the band works well with your engagement ring, you’ll want to consider the style of your bands. Will they have stones or no stones? Will your style be classic, such as one with a simple beaded edge, or more ornate, such as channel-set diamonds? Again, though your engagement ring style will dictate this as well, you’ll have to consider which metal best suits your style: gold, white gold, or platinum. For brides and grooms that work a lot with their hands, the choice of a strong metal will be important in insuring you have a ring that can withstand your work and the test of time.
Many Chicago couples choose to have their wedding bands engraved with their wedding date, initials, or a special message. Ask your jeweler whether they will perform this service or for a reliable referral if they do not. Make sure to leave enough time for the engraving so that your bands will be ready and waiting on the day you will exchange your vows.