After long, frustrated, fruitless attempts to find earrings that matched my ring and were dangly, I bought a pair of studs and had them converted into dangly earrings. We were in Birmingham. We could walk to the jewellery quarter, and I found Gavin Mack through weddingface.com (where our budget calculator and guest list were located), met him and thought he was great.
The necklace to go with the earrings was bought early on from H Samuels, where my engagement ring came from originally. I spent most of the ceremony with the catch slid round to the front!
We also talked to Gavin about our wedding rings. We had decided to get 9ct white gold plain bands – Guy wasn’t used to jewellery and didn’t want anything fussy – as simple as possible was his requirement; I had always imagined wedding bands to be completely plain, and already had a pretty sparkly engagement ring that I wanted to set off well, so this suited me. It also seemed important to us to get similar bands, just to add to their symbolism of unity. Of course, this is a very personal thing, but we both felt the same about it, so it was a sealed deal.
At the same time as wanting something plain, we wanted something a bit different. This sounds contrary, but it isn’t when plains means “without adornment”: afterall, you can have different shaped plain rings, even plain rings shaped around an engagement band! And you can have a plain ring with a small mark on it, perhaps secretly on the inside where it rests against your finger…
A couple of “different” ideas we flirted with included coastline rings (very expensive, though, and we didn’t have a ‘special’ coastline, so the novelty was valueless)
and fingerprint rings.
I’ve also found out about heartbeat rings, but still like the other two better.
We also toyed with the idea of an engraving, though many of those we looked at seemed brief and impersonal; somehow, I didn’t want a date on our love.
Rupert the cat used to wear a name tag before he started getting his collar stuck on things, and my mum had had it hand engraved “Rupert” on one side and our telephone number on the other; she still kept the tag. And that had been special partly because it was our cat, and partly because it was something we had had made locally and by hand for him. So we thought about hand engraving on the inside. And Gavin Mack worked with the only hand engraver in Birmingham! …But what message could be truly personal?
Of course, it came to us in a flash – it wasn’t the message that need be unique and personal, it could be the script.
I sneakily mentioned Epidict earlier in the story, the language which I created and taught Guy a little of. It also has it’s own alphabet, grammar and, most importantly, characters. Nobody else can read it, but we can translate into it.
So our rings were engraved in Epidict.
We were as impressed with the engraving as the earrings: the script was so fluidly engraved that we could hardly believe the engraver was not fully cognizant of the language and understood the message perfectly – all the stresses were in the right place! Each ring had the same message with the initial of other other at the end (well, more or less: Epidict does not have a G!).
Here they are
The ring box was a bargain. We picked it up on a whim for £3 at what Guy calls “the woo-woo shop”, a little treasure trove of crystals and dream catchers and other fairytale frivolities. The inside I did myself: a cut off of blue satin from my dress, some of our white satin and an organza flower. I took the sponge base out of another jewellery box, cut it to size and made the slits to slide the blue satin into – and thus the rings were mounted.
The silvery bands themselves were also acquired out of the blue: when visiting my mum in Sheffield we walked past a closing down jewellery shop (HPJ), popped in, and came out with two wedding bands for £85! Guy’s had to be substantially resized, but the beauty was the ease and good fortune… the one way the recession has helped us.
Guy putting my ring on my finger
As you can see, I kept my engagement ring on. I had no intention of taking it off, and yes, I’m wearing them backwards – I played around a bit after the wedding, but decided I definitely liked it this way (and the slightly big engagement ring is safely held in place).
And me putting Guy’s ring on his finger
These are the words we exchanged with our rings:
The giver: I give you this ring as a tangible and lasting reminder of my love. With time, it will age and change, but only subtly, and throughout our lives it will remain as strong as when it was forged.
The receiver: I accept this ring, and will wear it not by habit, but by choice. Let it reaffirm my love for, trust in and commitment to you, for as long as the sun and the moon shall endure.