I was determined that a wedding ring should be one of the very few pieces, perhaps the only piece, of brand new jewellery that I own. As it turns out I am not particularly good in proper retail shops; the lights are bright and the prices do not make sense, I panic, and the staff do not respond well to haggling.
In the end I bought my wedding ring from a flea market. It is an exact fit, the same 2mm band style as I had intended to buy but for a much for realistic cost. It had barely been worn and is 9ct gold, hallmarked and assay stamped, and acid tested by me just to be sure.
John’s ring involved a lot more drama. The first one we bought new from what I considered to be a reputable ebay dealer, however it did not test positively as gold and had to be returned and us refunded. We then went on a jewellery shop crawl round Edinburgh where we saw a lot of very beautiful antiques and learnt a few valuable lessons:
- One can’t just walk into posh antique shops; one lurks by the door in appropriately fine clothes looking as wealthy as possible until someone unlocks it.
- There are old men in nice suits sitting in leather armchairs in back-rooms examining papers. You feel proper by association.
- You can’t really pick stuff up and try it on.
- The mark-up on jewellery prices is insane.
- The more jewellery one is wearing when shopping, the more jewellery the salespeople assume one will be purchasing.
- Nobody wants to buy second-hand wedding rings, so nobody sells them.
- So instead of selling second-hand rings, they melt them down and remake the exact same ring in the exact same gold and call it “new”.
- To leave only six days before the wedding, and still be ring-less, is “pushing it”.
So after we had digested these points and contemplated second-hand gold and what, if any, significance the melting process has, and when we had had enough of the stuffiness of glass cases, John said that he wouldn’t personally buy from a pawn shop but would be fine acquiring a ring from a dealer who had. Being a dealer myself, I found a very fine ring in the perfect size, and of a much higher (thicker) quality than those we had previously observed.
If you also feel that old and second-hand jewellery is much more interesting, why not visit my SHOP…