PJ editor-in-chief Rachael Taylor on picking out her wedding rings.
I’ve enjoyed a couple of weeks off this summer, although an alarming amount of that time was spent thinking about jewellery, although this time, I’m glad to say, the jewels were mine.
I’ve been accused of keeping this a little bit under the radar, but in July I got hitched and enjoyed all the trappings it brings with it, including getting to go ring shopping.
For those of you who have met me, you’ll know that I’m fairly spontaneous (or should that be last minute?) and in keeping with this rep I was only engaged for about three months, because of which I didn’t actually get hold of my engagement ring until about 10 days before. But it was certainly worth the wait.
I had an idea of what I wanted and went to the truly talented Leyla Abdollahi, recent winner of this year’s Lonmin Award, who has done absolute wonders with what in effect could have been a fairly simple choice. She cradled a seriously sparkly diamond within an S-shape of yellow gold in an illusion setting and created a diamond-set wave band that sits snugly on top of the engagement ring, both of which I love and together create a real impact.
Working with Leyla was truly a joy; she is really an exciting new force in the world of fine jewellery and also just a fun person to spend time with. Despite putting her under the kosh with my very tight deadline she remained relaxed and delivered above and beyond out expectations. So much so that I spent the first few weeks wondering when someone would ask for them back.
As for my now husband Olly, we took a trip up to Brown & Newirth in Hatfield. Olly is not typically flash but has an eye for a quality product with a difference and so opted for a plain band, but one that has earned him lots of compliments for its use of rose gold and a brushed finish.
The Brown & Newirth ring is beautiful and simple, a fantastic example of a classic style with a twist. Being able to see the workshop where his ring was made, and to see it in nugget form before work began, really added to his experience and understanding of the craftsmanship that was involved in making the ring.
After spending many years writing about wedding jewellery it was a wonderful experience to be able to do it myself, and to really get involved with many of the hot topics we’ve been covering in the magazine in recent months – bespoke jewellery, British manufacturing and the theme of jewellery voyeurism, which we cover in the Septermber issue, which you can pick up for free from our stand at IJL next week.
This article was adapted from a column that first appeared in the August issue of Professional Jeweller magazine. To see a digital version of the August issue click here.