Good news! The FH and I have purchased our bands! We knew the exact style we each wanted, headed to the jewelry district in LA and was prepared to haggle and bargain until they kicked us out of the store. We budgeted just $300 total for both rings, a laughable budget according to one jeweler who demonstrated for us when we disclosed how much we were willing to spend early in our search. Luckily, the whole process overall was easy peasy!
My e-ring is a simple Tiffany band with a solitaire diamond seen here (a snapshot we took of the ring right after he proposed!)
I wanted something simple to go with it, but maybe with a little more bling. After some research and trying on other rings, I decided I wanted a channel set band with princess cut diamonds. I loved the style, the price? Not so much. I was getting prices between $500-$2000. That was way out of our league!
The FH decided he wanted a Titanium wedding band. He liked the size, the more masculine look...and the fact that most were around $40 was even better! While there were decent prices online for the bands we wanted, we knew we wanted to see the bands in person and try them on.
We decided to deal with a family friend who sold jewelry in the Jewelry District in LA. If you've never been there, you can find great deals at wholesale prices. There are so many shops/stalls it can get overwhelming, so it's best to have an idea of what you want, and who you want to deal with (refererals are good!)
After describing what I wanted, our jeweler pulled out three rings. One with diamonds but without the princess cut, a guard ring (not channel set), and an 18K, princess cut channel ring (exactly what I wanted). Of course, I fell in love with the latter. The price? $320. Not bad considering the retail price was $799. But...that was $20 over our total budget, and that didn't even include his ring yet! I decided to wait to see what the future hubs picked before I kissed our budget goodbye.
18K white gold princess diamond cut
The fiance decided he liked this titanium ring:
Simple 6mm band with two grooved stripes. We loved it! The price? Even better! $40!
Our jewelers gave both rings to us for $350. $50 over our original budget, but we figured it was still a pretty good deal, especially with my ring being 18K white gold with diamonds. The rings were a good fit and size for both of us, so we we were able to bring them home!
My new band with my e-ring
But get this, we showed his ring to some friends. They liked it, said it looked great and asked us how much it was. Guess, we told them.
$400? $500? They gasped when the heard the actual price. $40? Why do you want such a cheap ring? Titanium? Who's ever heard of a titanium ring?
Actually, titanium is a very popular metal for a wedding band. Many consider it more durable and lasting than gold as it doesn't scratch. Titanium doesn't rust, and while gold naturally loses its luster over the years, titanium stays consistent. Titanium is also lightweight and very comfortable to wear.
So what's the big deal? Let's examine some of the arguments against titanium, shall we?
1)Wearing titanium is dangerous. The band is so durable, that if you gain excessive weight, or were to have some kind of accident, hospital workers won't be able to cut through the metal. Not so. Hospitals are equipped with tools to cut through nearly every kind of metal, including titanium and tungsten for that matter.
2) You won't be able to resize it. True, titanium, as well as tungsten, can't be resized all. That's why you should make sure measurements are properly taken care of. Luckily, with our jeweler, if we need a new size, we are able to switch rings at no extra cost. But honestly, at $40, you can buy another titanium ring without much of a dent to your pocket.
3) Titanium is less shiny than precious metals. True, but that might be what makes it attractive, especially to guys. I know the future hubs didn't want anything too extravagant, and actually liked the luster of titanium. Although some jewelers say that over time, gold loses it luster and may look more "dull" than a titanium ring. Titanium will pretty much look the same forever.
4) Titanium is way too affordable. You don't want to wear a cheap ring. Since when did being affordable be such a disadvantage? As I've said before, price isn't always in direct proportion to quality, and titanium rings are one such example. Some elitists won't wear titanium just because of the price, and well, to each his/her own.
So, titanium is a great quality, cost-effective option for couples on a budget. Maybe you don't have to tell people how much you paid for your titanium ring. When they ask, keep them guessing and enjoy listening to those three digit numbers they throw at you!
Sue & Sam Jewelry Co.
637-639 South Hill StreetBooth B-8 &C-8
Los Angeles, CA 90014
Links on titanium:http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Benefits-of-Titanium-Rings&id=69639
Looking to purchase titanium wedding bands online? Try Titanium Knights on Etsy