A Guide To Choosing the Right Wedding Rings - Part 4
How To Find The Right Wedding Rings For You (Part 4)
Author - Michael Freedman
Diamond Set or Plain Bands
The plain wedding band is still the most popular style of wedding ring. However many ladies and in recent years more and more men, like to have a diamond or diamonds set in the ring.
Illustration 16: Some diamond set wedding ring designs (Ring designs by Brown & Newirth)
Eternity rings and half eternity rings have become very popular choices for ladies wedding rings, particularly if the engagement ring is diamond set on the shoulders. It is worth noting that full eternity rings, where the diamonds are set all the way around the band, cannot be sized later, so a half eternity ring is often a more sensible choice. If the engagement ring has diamonds on the shoulders, a half eternity can often be found with the same type and setting of diamonds which go the same distance around the band, which will match beautifully with the engagement ring.
When choosing matching bands it is often popular to have the ladies set with a diamond and the man’s without, however some couples will have both rings diamond set. Many men also like to have a diamond set in their wedding band, even when choosing an industrial metal wedding ring.
Illustration 17: Examples of diamond eternity rings.
Have Your Fingers Measured
It is very important to have your fingers professionally measured before purchasing wedding rings, particularly if you are going to purchase online.
In most western countries the wedding ring is worn on the fourth finger (the finger between the middle finger and the little (pinkie) finger of the left hand. The choice of this finger is because of an ancient Roman belief that a vein in this finger travelled directly to the heart. For the lady, the wedding ring is worn first on the finger (closer to the heart) and then the engagement ring. In some orthodox christian countries, for example Poland, wedding rings are worn on the same finger of the right hand, or, for example in Greece, the ring is placed on the left hand during the ceremony and then moved to the right hand later. However, in most countries the ring will be worn on the left hand.
Many websites offer a sizing strip you can print off, cut out and place around the finger. However this method of sizing can be very inaccurate. The finger size can also vary depending on the weather, with fingers expanding slightly in hotter weather. A professional jeweller, will take many factors into account when measuring a finger and ordering a ring, such as the current weather, and the width and profile of the ring being ordered. It may be worth having fingers sized on a few occasions to be sure the sizing has been done correctly and the ring will be comfortable in different weather, or with hands hot or cold.
When buying wedding rings online, if the customer determines the finger size and the ring has to be specially made, the website usually cannot take responsibility for wrong sizes being ordered and therefore cannot bear the cost of re-sizing. Should a re-sizing cost be necessary this is generally outweighed by the overall cost savings of buying online. However, some styles such as celtic knotwork rings or various other patterned rings cannot be resized as this would spoil the pattern. In this case it is especially important to ensure the correct finger size is ordered. Should it be necessary to have a ring re-sized this will generally cost between £20 - £30 from most jewellers. Usually diamond set rings can only be sized up or down by a maximum of two to three sizes as further sizing could weaken the security of the diamond settings.
The shape of our fingers is also a factor in determining the correct ring size, as some people have more prominent knuckles. When the knuckle is larger than the finger, the best size is the smallest size which will comfortably fit over the knuckle. Otherwise the ring will look too big and be uncomfortable when it is worn. Some people’s fingers are larger past the knuckle and for this finger shape, it is important that the ring is tight enough that it cannot slip off and be lost.
Some people who have problems with arthritis or have broken their finger in the past, may wish to purchase a type of ring that has a hinge and closes over the finger, so it does not need to go over the knuckle, the hinge can be well hidden in these rings and is not noticeable. However this type of ring can be expensive and hard to find. One example of this type of hinged ring is the Domino Superfit™ range.
UK finger sizes are measured by letters of the alphabet and also half sizes (e.g. M1/2) these are usually measured by the leading edge of the ring, this is the extent to which the leading edge of a ring travels up a jewellers ring sizing stick. However, usually, wider rings will be measured by the centre of the ring and some jewellers use this method for all ring widths. It is therefore important to check whether a finger measurement given for a ring is a centre or leading edge measurement.
Different countries use different sizing scales for measuring rings, for example the UK sizes are different to systems used in other countries in Europe, and the USA uses another scale again. Various ring size conversion charts are available free on the internet, which show how to convert ring sizes of one country to the same size from another sizing system. To find these charts simply search for “ring size conversion chart” in your internet search engine. Their appears to be a small disagreement of exact conversions between some of these charts of between half a size and one size. I have outlined below a sizing comparison of some of the main ring sizing systems.
|British & Australian||US & Canada||French & Russian||German||Japanese||Swiss|
|B ½||1 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|C ½||1 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|D||2||41 ½||13 ½||2||1 ½|
|D ½||2 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|E||2 ½||42 ¾||13 ¾||3||2 ¾|
|E ½||2 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|F ½||3 ⅛||-||-||-||-|
|F ¾||3 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|G||3 ⅜||45 ¼||-||5||5 ¼|
|G ¼||3 ½||-||14 ½||-||-|
|G ½||3 ⅝||-||-||6||-|
|H||3 ¾||46 ½||-||-||6 ½|
|I||4 ¼||47 ¾||-||-||7 ¾|
|I ½||4 ½||-||15 ¼||8||-|
|J||4 ⅝||49||15 ½||-||9|
|J ¼||4 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|J ½||5||-||15 ¾||9||-|
|K ¼||5 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|K ½||5 ⅜||-||-||10||-|
|L||5 ½||51 ¾||16||-||11 ¾|
|L ¼||5 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|L ½||5 ⅞||-||-||-||-|
|M||6||52 ¾||16 ½||12||12 ¾|
|M ½||6 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|N ½||6 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|O||7||55 ¼||17 ¼||14||15 ¼|
|O ½||7 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|P||7 ½||56 ½||17 ¾||15||16 ½|
|P ½||7 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|Q||8||57 ¾||18||16||17 ¾|
|Q ½||8 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|Q ¾||8 ½||-||18 ½||17||-|
|R ¼||8 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|R ½||8 ⅞||-||-||-||-|
|S||9 ⅛||60 ¼||-||-||20 ¼|
|S ¼||9 ¼||-||-||-||-|
|S ½||9 ⅜||-||-||-||-|
|S ¾||9 ½||-||19 ½||19||-|
|T||9 ⅝||61 ½||-||-||21 ½|
|T ¼||9 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|U||10 ¼||62 ¾||-||21||22 ¾|
|U ½||10 ½||-||20 ¼||22||-|
|V||10 ⅝||63||-||-||23 ¾|
|V ¼||10 ¾||-||-||-||-|
|V ½||11||-||20 ¾||23||-|
With so many styles to choose from and places to buy, it’s a good idea to look around for the best designs and lowest prices. The main decision is whether to buy from a jewellers shop or to buy online. Luckily Ogham Jewellery are both a long established traditional family owned jeweller's based in Ayr Scotland as well as an online store.
Online shops can often offer a wider range of wedding ring styles as they can put the full product ranges of various ring makers on their website without holding all styles, widths and sizes in stock. In addition as the costs of running a jewellery business online are much lower than a high street jewellery shop, the prices of the rings tend to be considerably lower.
As with purchasing anything else online, it is important to be aware that some online shops are fraudulent and therefore one should take various measures to ensure the credibility of the online store you are purchasing from. Online stores which also own real bricks and mortar jewellery stores, provide a much higher level of credibility than many online only stores.
One could also check such things as independent reviews of the shop or the terms and conditions of the website. Personally, I would also wish a website to provide a telephone contact landline for any enquiries, our telephone number is 01292 610800
Additionally payment on any website should be secure through a respectable payment gateway or an independently verified payment system and the website should comply with strict data protection rules. The Ogham Jewellery website is on the Volusion E-Commerce platform and has a Volusion SSL certificate which guarantees the security of your information.
Many customers now go to jewellers shops to try on some ring styles and have their fingers measured, but then buy online to take advantage of the lower prices on offer. I believe that buying online is often the best option due to the savings which are available, however it is important to ensure you purchase from a reputable retailer.
When you have decided on your choice of metal, style, width and design, accurately measured your finger sizes and shopped around to find the best place to buy, you can make your purchase with the confidence that you have found the right ring for you at the right price. Your wedding ring will be an eternal reminder of this truly special occasion.
How to Find The Right Wedding Rings For You (part 1) (Introduction, Budget, Choosing the Right Metal)
How to Find The Right Wedding Rings For You (part 2) (Further Explanation of Metals and Their Properties)
How to Find The Right Wedding Rings For You (part 3) (Choosing the right width and style)