Same Sex Wedding and Engagement Rings, Is there Such a Thing?
by Alex Sommerville
June 21, 2019 / Jewellery Buying Guide
Have you been looking for wedding rings, or maybe you want to propose to your partner? Most people do this at least once in their life, but how does all this work when you’re in a same-sex relationship?
The unfortunate truth about jewellery trends (and this is across the entire industry, not just wedding jewellery), is that it has always traditionally adhered to the heteronormative styles that have defined most of the fashion industry. The idea that a particular style is feminine, and another masculine has always been applied, and the result has been running design as a concept into a rather deep rut for some time. The reasons behind this are as entangled in the politics of traditional gender archetypes as anything else, however, there is a shift in thinking that has started to creep its way around these traditions. And it is same-sex couples leading the charge.
Store after store, shop after shop seem to have the same designs repeated over and over with designers afraid to take a risk and the public afraid to be too different. Jewellery was once one of the ultimate forms of self-expression, not just in terms of style but also of social status, with the men as adorned (if not more so) than the women. In the era of the hand craftsman, expression of the individual client was the driving force behind all the creative fine trades. Now in the era of mass production, it’s all about being broadly appealing for the best price in the shortest time – especially if we can order it online with minimum fuss. For those who want to break the mould and create something individual, custom manufacturing is the way to go. It is also the best way to move away from everything the industry will tell you is ‘normal’.
Custom manufacturing will always lead to a more satisfying outcome because you are the one deciding what you like, rather than simply having to settle for what is sitting on the shelf. Our LGBTQI clientele have been among those to take full advantage of this and, in the process, begin a redefinition of both the engagement and the wedding ring. Do you just get one ring? or does each person get one of each? Do they match? Are they simple or ornate? Do we wear them on the same finger? The answer to all of it is do what is right for you, and custom manufacturing lets you do all of it or none.
Convention has a habit of stifling the creative and vilifying the unique, a concept virtually all members of the LGBTQI community can identify with. It is also a trap into which many retailers fall in their quest to earn a buck and make ends meet. The advent of same-sex marriage has created a new opportunity for us all to start pushing the boundaries again, giving both the couple and the individual the chance to make something truly theirs instead of just going with what has always been done.
And it’s about time!
The questions of value, or more to the point, budget, is also a common issue. This is particularly true for lesbian couples who wish to purchase both engagement and wedding rings for both partners as it can get very expensive very quickly. Custom manufacturing is, as a general rule, a little more expensive due to the increased labour and material cost, however, it also allows the opportunity for designs to be modified to fit into a particular budget. The flexibility of the process is what gives people control and with price often being an indicator of quality, most people find that spending a little extra to get higher quality is well worth their while.
The classic version of anything will never go out of fashion, but wedding jewellery shouldn’t merely be a reflection of the fashionable but a statement about the individual. They are symbols of commitment, a representation of the pledges and vows made to the one you love and the one who loves you. The questions of “is this too feminine/masculine?” is an irrelevant one. What should be asked is does this ring reflect me? The custom experience should deliver the ring of your dreams, not someone else’s.
Simple or extravagant, for girls, for boys, or for everyone in between love is love.
As we are diverse so are our tastes, and the rings we wear should show that diversity. It’s not a gay wedding it’s a wedding, it’s not a gay wedding ring, it’s your wedding ring. The only label we want to put on your wedding and your jewellery is the one with our logo. We welcome everyone to come in with your own style and create something you’re truly proud to wear every day, for the rest of your life.
What other industries need to break the mould to better accommodate LGBTQI clientele? Let us know in the comments below.👇👇👇