I tend to be hard on my jewelry. I don’t know, man. I’m just trying to live my life. But if you’ve read for a while, you know that I once busted the diamond right out of my engagement ring, and I’ve had the prongs of the replacement ring fixed multiple times. Several months ago, I took a look at my engagement ring, and it was a mess. The ring itself was no longer circular and the prongs had gotten crunched over again. It really wasn’t safe to wear it if I wanted to keep the diamond. So I took it off.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed this, but jewelry is expensive. The ring sat in a drawer for a long time until I finally visited a jeweler or two, and when I realized how expensive it would be to re-set the diamond, I became discouraged and put the ring back in my drawer. Then I decided it should be my anniversary present, possibly combined with my birthday present. But it just stayed in the drawer.
I missed my ring. So a few weeks ago, with my birthday coming up, I renewed the search for a replacement.
It was going to be tough. First, I wanted it to match my very plain yellow-gold wedding band. Now, if you’re foolish enough to say that you want your engagement band to match your wedding band at a store, this is when the salesperson tells you that that’s a terrific idea, and you should probably treat yourself to both a new engagement ring and a new wedding band! And, what, your current wedding band matches your husband’s? No doubt he deserves a new ring, too. What a beautiful, beautiful celebration of love. . . !
But I’m sentimental. And cheap. And apparently way too rugged, all at the same time. Which is a problem, because yellow gold is a soft-ish metal, so yellow gold is precisely the wrong choice for my ruggedness problem, but a virtual requirement for Sentimental Katie. That difficulty was just the beginning.
Next, on the topic of ruggedness, I eventually figured out that I really needed six platinum prongs, not four prongs, and not weeny-ass metal prongs. Because I want to keep the diamond in the ring permanently. At the first couple of stores I went to, the people who helped me either: 1) didn’t seem to process what I was saying when I said that I wanted to keep the diamond and not have to buy another ring again, ever; or 2) were acutely aware of the fact that six platinum prongs and a sturdy band are way better than the less hardy alternatives, and they priced them accordingly.
At the third store, I finally found something that seemed to fit the bill: a very basic, sturdy engagement band with six platinum prongs for an amount that was not crazy. Absolutely less than we’ll be spending on soccer tournaments or gymnastics meets this year.
Still, I was not overwhelmed with enthusiasm. It felt a little bit like spending a bunch of money on, say, maintaining your furnace or replacing your roof. A lot of money for something that wasn’t particularly exciting or fun. I took my notes from the various stores and the battered ring and put them all back in my drawer for a few of days.
At some point during this little ennui hiatus, someone asked about jewelry stores on Facebook, and one of the stores recommended repeatedly was Mayfair Jewelers. I mustered up the energy to try one more store before settling. I stopped by the Glenville Mayfair Jewelers and told the saleswoman my tale of woe, how I wanted a ring that could stand up to my daily life and match my wedding band and be as cheap as possible, and maybe, maybe be pretty.
She stopped pulling out whatever velvet tray full of treasures she’d planned to show me, and instead she led me over to the 50% off Estate Sale section. How had I not thought of this?!?!
Shortly thereafter, we’d found it: a (tough) platinum band with six (empty, lonesome) prongs flanked by three little diamonds on each side, plus just enough yellow-gold detailing to make it match my yellow gold wedding band. All for just $90 more than the super-plain ring for which I had been planning, reluctantly, to settle. Whoop, whoop! Mayfair is my new favorite place!
Now, when I’m driving, I gaze down at my new ring:
I understand that my photography skills are not fabulous, especially for photographs taken during red lights, but here’s a slightly closer look that shows you the way the yellow gold makes it look like it’s that color ring all the way around even when it’s not:
Happy birthday to me!