The most important jewelry item a person can wear is his or her wedding ring or wedding band, which is a metal ring, symbol of the marriage. Initially worn only by women and popular mostly in Europe, the custom of wearing a wedding band spread throughout the world and changed such that both the wife and the husband wore one. The main reason for being the most important piece of jewelry a person can wear is that, unlike other jewelry items, it carries an extremely powerful symbolism, and as a result, it is worn day and night and hardly ever removed.
When it comes to the design and style of wedding bands, a myriad of possibilities exist. Generally, the man’s band is wider and more often than not, complements or matches the woman’s band. The materials used for plain wedding bands range from gold or platinum to stainless steel – in any case, metals that are not affected by tarnish are preferred. To express the stability and eternity of their love, some couples choose wedding bands made of titanium or tungsten, which are extremely durable metals.
Decorated wedding bands feature an interwoven design or Celtic symbols, among which a very popular one is “Claddagh”, consisting of two hands holding a heart with a crown on top that symbolizes love, devotion and friendship. Another popular design, mostly in French cultures, consists of three separate but intertwined stripes, each with its own meaning: hope, faith and love.
Another variety is a wedding band with a gemstone attached to it. Even though usually chosen as an engagement ring, the diamond solitaire is still a popular choice among women as a wedding band as well. The diamond solitaire is a ring with a single diamond set onto it. A variety of the diamond solitaire is a ring set with a diamond, but accompanied by other, smaller precious stones.
One important aspect to take into consideration is the differences (and similarities) between an engagement and a wedding ring. Usually, engagement rings are worn before marriage, to express the engaged status of the wearer. Both rings are worn on the left hand ring finger and can be purchased either separately or as a set. While an engagement ring is usually adorned with one or more precious stones, a wedding band will most likely have a simple design. In any case, you should pick an engagement ring that will match with a wedding band, or even better, buy a set that contains both the engagement and the wedding rings. If the engagement ring and the wedding band, which are usually worn on top of each other, are designed as matching pieces, they can be welded together few days prior to the wedding to avoid friction caused by daily wear.
Now that you know exactly what to look for, we are going to outline some in-depth details about wedding bands.
Yellow gold is the classic material wedding bands are made of. It is the most malleable and ductile metal, and it has been used since as early as 6000 B.C. to create jewelry, like rings or bracelets, or as decorations.
If you are inclined towards a traditional style and prefer a rather austere design, then a yellow gold wedding band is the perfect choice for you. The gold’s sunny brilliance will express in a simple, yet profound way the bond with your loved one. In contrast with the playful sparkle of white gold, yellow gold exhibits a quieter, but more profound elegance.
The next aspect to keep in mind when looking for a wedding band is the carat numeral of the gold in your ring. Carat weighing is a way of distinguishing gold by its quality – given, in turn, by the percentage of actual, pure gold in the alloy, which contains other metals that confer durability. The main categories are 10K, 14K and 18K, which correspond to increasing quantities of pure gold. While a higher percentage of gold certainly looks attractive, it is obvious that the price of the ring will increase proportionally with the carat weight. If you are on a budget, but you still want a yellow gold wedding band, then a 10K gold alloy is a good option: even though it contains less gold than the more expensive alternatives, it retains the same sobriety and elegance.
As a conclusion, it should be noted that this was a brief guide to choosing your wedding band. Ultimately, this should be a decision you make with the one you are about to marry, while also taking into consideration our advice. If yellow gold is your metal of choice, but your funds for the purchase are limited, then a 10K yellow gold wedding band will serve its purpose just as gracefully and elegantly as the pricier variants, without breaking the bank, thus allowing you to start a wonderful life alongside your loved one.