Beauty in Strength

My Wedding - - JEWELLERY - By Gayle Dick­son

In years gone by, cou­ples tended to buy their en­gage­ment ring and two wed­ding bands as a set, some­times even in­clud­ing an eter­nity ring in the mix. More of­ten than not, the en­gage­ment ring was a soli­taire of vary­ing size, and the bands were usu­ally fairly plain and made of yel­low gold. Things are very dif­fer­ent to­day. In­di­vid­u­al­ity is the key to cur­rent trends, with many opt­ing for cus­tom de­signs and there’s a big push for white met­als such as plat­inum, white gold, pal­la­dium and titanium.

Your wed­ding band should be a re­flec­tion of you, much as your en­gage­ment ring should. It’s not a given to have a match­ing his and hers set, and there’s no rule that says you can’t each have dif­fer­ent met­als or stones.

Titanium has long proved it’s worth in terms of dura­bil­ity and strength, hav­ing the high­est strength-to-weight ra­tio of any me­tal. Be­ing tough doesn’t mean it has to be unattrac­tive, as I dis­cov­ered with the range at Ar­ti­fact.

It has a sim­i­lar colour to plat­inum, a smokey grey that’s very on-trend. It blends well with the ad­di­tion of other met­als and stones so that your in­di­vid­u­al­ity can shine through. I also love that it’s hypo-al­ler­genic!

Some­thing that re­ally at­tracted my at­ten­tion was the abil­ity to an­odise the me­tal to cre­ate a range of pat­terns that would be nigh im­pos­si­ble with most other met­als. Let’s say your man fan­cies a ring with a dif­fer­ence, but per­haps works with his hands all day and doesn’t want to risk los­ing an inset di­a­mond. The team at Ar­ti­fact can cre­ate beau­ti­ful pat­terns di­rectly on the me­tal, sim­ply by heat­ing it. Shades of blue, pur­ple and black can be achieved.

Two-toned bands are very cur­rent, and this can be achieved in titanium, sim­ply through heat­ing. There’s no need for an in­lay, al­though this can be done if it’s what you like!

Whether you pre­fer a pol­ished, brushed, satin or matt look, it can be achieved in titanium … or you could opt for a com­bi­na­tion of, say, pol­ished and matt which will give you a point of dif­fer­ence with­out any ac­tual colour or the ad­di­tion of stones.

Ar­ti­fact can also ma­chine-en­grave pat­terns onto your ring and th­ese can be to your spe­cific de­sign – a fam­ily crest, for ex­am­ple. Your wed­ding date or names can also be en­graved in­side the bands.

For some­thing truly dif­fer­ent, check out what Ted and his team are do­ing with Mokume and Da­m­as­cus tech­niques! Mokume was de­vel­oped by Ja­panese masters in the 17th Cen­tury. Thin lay­ers of met­als are fused to­gether and ma­nip­u­lated to cre­ate pat­terns that re­sem­ble the grain of wood. Da­m­as­cus in­volves fus­ing mul­ti­ple lay­ers of two or more steel al­loys to make a solid piece which is then twisted, ground and ma­nip­u­lated to form pat­terns. If it’s in­di­vid­u­al­ity you’re af­ter, this might be for you as no two pieces can ever be the same!

While based in Dunedin, Ted’s data­base of happy cus­tomers crosses in­ter­na­tional bound­aries. He’s quite adept at work­ing with clients who can’t get in to see him in per­son, so don’t let that put you off.

Head to the web­site, have a look around, ask any ques­tions that haven’t al­ready been an­swered … then sit back and wait for the ooh’s and aah’s when you sport a ring that’s truly unique, truly you!­ti­

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