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The nation of Canada has an unfortunate history of being mocked for its slightly askew viewpoint on social tastes. The prefaced adjective of “Canadian” has entered into the American lexicon as a precautionary statement of an item being described as having a slight lack of class, or potentially a full-on embrace of all things kitsch. Canadian tuxedo anyone? Thus, the first mention of Canadian diamonds may bring to the mind of an unenlightened cultural ambassador the image of Cubic Zirconia, or perhaps even a string of glow-in-the-dark Mardi Gras beads. Yet in a complete flip of Canada’s script on all things glamorous, these diamonds from the Great White North are now being heralded as the most desirable “ice” in the world.
The primary cause for the recent allure in Canuck stones is their tag-line of being “conflict free.” Most women had probably never realized there was a trail of blood and death behind the glimmering jewel on their fingers until Leonardo DiCaprio and his dreamy eyes starred in the film Blood Diamond. While becoming aware of the deaths of 50,000 Sierra Leoneans didn’t necessarily slow the sales of diamonds in the U.S., it did suddenly make “consumers want to know the product's sourcing, treatment of laborers, labor compensation, and whether child labor is involved,” according to a spokeswoman from the World Diamond Council. And sure, while many dealers probably lied to their customer base and claimed that their engagements rings were dug up in the fertile soil of good ole’ Texas, U.S.A., a whole new world of complications was now to be dealt with to continue sales. The largest transnational mining company in the world, De Beers, had to somewhat begrudgingly admit that “turning a blind eye to where our diamonds come from will no longer be overlooked or tolerated by society," as said Gareth Penny, their managing director. Oh, what a bummer Gareth.
But just like a generation of sanctuary-seekers before them, De Beers and two of its’ largest competitors decided that Canada had a brand new appeal. While diamonds had been mined in Canada since their discovery there in 1991, these dominating monopoly holders realized that focusing a renewed effort on Canadian digs could prove quite appealing in the eyes of upper-crust socialites who didn’t want to envision a dead African child every time they strapped on their “bling.” Fortunately for the rest of the word, these multi-national corporations’ need and desire to improve their image also led to great benefits and improvements in the humanitarian treatments and environmental impacts related to the diamond industry. While excavation programs in Africa had resulted in disastrous impacts on the surrounding ecosystems, the harvest of Canadian diamonds focuses greatly on the preservations of surrounding land and aquatic habitats and is fully supported by the Canada Mining Regulations for the Northwest Territories. And rather than the slave labor and civil wars that arose from the mining of blood diamonds, Canadian diamonds provide a steady stream of career opportunities for the Northern population as well as create a continuous drive of economic stimuli. There is also a higher yield of gem-quality deposits in these mines as compared to other parts of the world, so the ratio of product to work is much higher. The need to increase production and decrease quality work conditions is not a potentiality.
You may ask if the final cut and polished stones live up to the degree of perfection that the world has grown accustomed to in their diamonds – well rest-assured, they are triumphantly exquisite. Physically and chemically, there’s no way to distinguish one diamond’s origin from another. So don’t think that since they’re derived from Canada’s frozen north as compared to the tropics of Africa that you’ll be able to notice more of an icy shimmer to them. However, many do claim that there is an undeniable clarity in these stones. What makes these truly stand out though, as well as protect their authenticity, is that many of the Canadian stones are now being etched with a minuscule image of a maple leaf or polar bear. This creates an even more unique cut on each diamond, and brings more of a physical connection between the rock’s origin and its owner. As the country now stands as the 3rd largest diamond-producing nation in the world, and with predictions of it overtaking Russia’s standing in the next several years, Canada’s booming diamond industry is proof that glamour can still exist in a world where global apathy is no longer tolerated. Looking good with no detrimental catches is something we can all believe in.
I have never been much of a tech geek with a penchant for gadgets. It took me a long time to want to get an iPhone, and the constant bulging pockets from having both a cell phone and iPod in them was getting annoying. While sitting on the couch watching TV one day, I decided it would be great if I could watch a show and blog at the same time. So off to Best Buy I went. What I originally had in mind was to buy a small laptop. But I bought an iPad mini instead. And I love it! LOVE it!
The Apple iPad mini was a great purchase. Like I said – I am not a geek for gadgets. I can blog on it and use a word processing app to do rough drafts of press releases. It even has a Photoshop app to re-format pictures taken with the hi-def camera. Hopefully a few years down the road they’ll figure out how to expand its storage capacity, but for Internet surfing, watching streaming movies and other simple tasks, I find the Apple iPad mini to be a great tool.
Every once in a while, I like to see what’s for sale on Amazon.com that’s more than a hundred dollars. Tungsten wedding rings sell like crazy there, but there is a lot of great quality precious metal jewelry as well. For example, here a platinum diamond wedding ring with F color diamonds that are VS2 in clarity. The total weight is 1.86 carats, and at 4.5 millimeters wide, this is really a nice style ring. And it’s $10,200! Since the ring is also platinum, the diamonds will be held secure for a long, long time.
Buy this as a gift and you'll be her hero forever!
It’s last call to get a chance to win a set of his and hers wedding bands from Lieberfarb’s new BOND2 wedding band collection (as pictured). One lucky couple will win a wedding band in his size and in her size. Men may choose between 5-7mm in width, while ladies can choose between 4-6mm. All you need is a valid Twitter account. Visit this Competwition to enter.
Jewelry created by leading Balinese jewelry design Robert Manse Designs can be seen on Thursday, December 13 at jewelry retailer Hatfield Jewelers. Hatfield Jewelers is located at 461 Winsted Road in Torrington, Connecticut. The show hours are 10AM until 8PM (Eastern Standard Time).
Visit the Robert Manse Facebook page for directions.
Need some jewelry gift ideas for the holidays? Take a peek at Robert’s Bali Designs Colorful Gift Suggestions for ideas and to buy directly online from Home Shopping Network.
Are you a “last minute” person looking to getaway for the holidays? Well, right now there is a great deal for a two bedroom condo in Belize for just $325 a night (plus 9% tax). This package comes with a tremendous view of the ocean on a property that is highly recommended by Belizean travel agency Romantic Travel Belize. And if you don’t know much about Belize, or why it’s such a great place to visit, then check out this blog post – Belize: One of 2012’s Top Honeymoon Destinations.
Looking for a little bigger place? There is a three bedroom beachfront condo available from December 22 – 29 for just $799 (plus tax).
Here’s a testimonial from a couple that just had their honeymoon in Belize. Elaine is a former co-worker that remembered Belize from our meetings together, and she went and had the time of her life! You really can’t ask for anything more than that.
"We had the BEST time, ever! Seriously, it was the most relaxing, fun time we have had in a while, and much needed. You were a huge help, I really don't understand how a bride and groom are able to plan a huge wedding AND have to worry about taking care of the honeymoon details. Once we fell in love with Belize, it was a no-brainer to utilize your services. Why go to a major travel agency who needs to rely on outside sources, when I can get hands-on encounters and experiences from someone who lives it daily? You really looked out for our best interest; we didn't feel like just another customer, we felt like your ONLY customer even though you work with multiple couples at a time. You did not steer us wrong, and always had our best interest at heart. Now THAT is customer service. We cannot thank you anymore than we already have, and will always be grateful for your help during one of the greatest moments in our lives." - Elaine and Shaun
For more information, please contact Lara at Romantic Travel Belize. This is a limited offer, so act now.
When you think of a wedding ring engraving, you may think of an old fashioned-looking swirly design on the outside of the ring. Or you may think of “I' be with you forever” being inscribed on the inside. 15+ Most Unique Engravings on Wedding Rings points out some very unusual – and very interesting – wedding ring engravings for both the inside and outside of your selected design. Some of them are very cool, so be sure to check it out.
One set of rings features a famous exchange between Princess Leia and Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back. Han responds to Leia’s “I love you” in the only way he knows how - “I know.”
A promise ring is a gift meant to confirm commitment, most commonly to another person. If two people are in a relationship where both parties deeply love one other but are too young to get married, don’t have the money for a wedding, or simply can’t spare the time away from work or school to set a date, giving your partner a promise ring is a wonderful way to tell them how much you genuinely care without taking that ultimate step towards matrimony. Promise rings can also be worn as a symbol of abstinence, or dedication to a specific religion. Although promise rings can have a variety of purposes, the idea is always to represent a promise of some kind.
If you are looking to get your boyfriend or girlfriend a promise ring, there are no rules designating what the ring should look like, and there’s a lot of free reign here. Take into account what your partner likes- do they have a fondness for a certain type of stone? Do they like silver over gold? This is an opportunity for you to illustrate how much you know and love that person, so try to make sure you get a ring they will love. Maybe your partner is very involved in their heritage- if they’re Irish get them an Irish promise ring, and if they’re religious you may want to get them a ring with spiritual importance. As this ring will be a symbol of your combined love, it is important that you like it, too. Also, sometimes it means more to the other person when you want to wear a ring, too. This way, the world knows that both of you are in a committed, happy relationship, versus just one person wearing that promise.
Although most promise rings do tend to indicate a sort of pre-engagement, this does not have to be the case. It is very important that you do not propose when you give your significant other the ring, or they may think you are asking them to marry you. This confusion could cause difficulties and someone might get hurt. Be straightforward about what the ring symbolizes. Also, consider what finger to wear it on. Although according to history there is a vena amoris, or “vein of love,” in the traditional wedding finger, it might be a good idea to wear the ring on a different finger, again just to keep the meaning clear.
If you love someone but you aren’t ready, for whatever reason, to get married, consider showing the person you love the importance of your commitment by getting them a promise ring. The beauty of it is you can give them whatever you think they will like, it doesn’t have to be pricy, and the meaning will always be there.
Author’s Bio: Enda Glacken is a native of Ireland and writes enthusiastically on all things relating to Ireland and jewelry. He is the founder at thecelticjeweller.com, a modern online Celtic & Irish jewelry site. You can find his thoughts and musings at his blog or connect on twitter @celtic_jeweller.
Please note: This is a guest post provided by the writer.
Photo-Credits: M.G. Kafka
Have you seen this great wedding contest called “Operation: Tie the Knot?” New Jersey jewelry retailer Venus Jewelers (located in Somerset) partnered with local businesses and Operation Jersey Cares to give away a Lieberfarb diamond engagement ring, a set of wedding bands and many other components to create an ultimate dream-wedding package.
Operation: Tie the Knot is available to those actively enlisted in the United States Armed Forces or their significant others. Entrants are asked to visit Venus Jewelers’ Facebook page and tell their love story. Fans of Venus Jewelers are encouraged to “like” their favorite story, and the couple that has touched the most hearts with will crowned winner!
But hurry! Operation: Tie the Knot commences December 3, 2012.
What started as a silly idea has blossomed into something a little bit bigger! This is The Wedding Ring Blog’s 1,000th post.
Initially about 9 people unique visitors found The Wedding Ring Blog per day, and now the number has blossomed to over 9,000, with all of them coming from organic sources.
Here's to a great rest of 2012, a wonderful 2013 wedding season, and 1,000 more blog posts!
American wedding ring designer Lieberfarb is giving soon-to-be-wed couples a chance to win a set of his and hers wedding bands from their new BOND2 collection (as pictured). Just enter the Lieberfarb Wedding Ring Competwition, which is a unique way to win sweepstakes and giveaways through an active Twitter account, before December 18, 2012 and keep your fingers crossed! Men may choose between 5-7mm in width, while ladies can choose between 4-6mm.
The Lieberfarb Wedding Ring Competwition is brought to future brides and grooms everywhere by Romantic Travel Belize and UnBelizable Weddings and Honeymoons. If you haven’t looked into Belize for your honeymoon or vacation, be sure to do it right now! Belize is a fantastic and affordable paradise.
See more BOND2 rings online.
Target is apparently listening to their customers, and starting their Black Friday sales promotions on Thanksgiving Thursday at 9PM.
“We heard from our guests that they look forward to kicking off their holiday shopping with deal-hunting on Thanksgiving night," said Kathee Tesija, executive vice president, merchandising, for Target. "Opening at 9 p.m. gives Target's Black Friday guests a more convenient way to create an after-dinner shopping event that the entire family can enjoy."
In addition to having normal Black Friday sales discounts, Target will begin other special deals of popular items at different times of the night. For example, a Samsung 50" LED HDTV will be available starting at 4AM for $699. In comparision, a Samsung 50" LED HDTV is available on Amazon.com for nearly $600. That’s quite a savings for ten additional inches!
Sure – planning a wedding requires a lot of thought of what beauty products to use on the big day and the honeymoon. And for the DIY wedding crowd, the right finger food for the engagement party or backyard wedding is a must! But where do you go to sample certain beauty or food items? I recently came across Free Flys, and it’s a website that helps you with the sampling process. Nice!
Free Flys provides the best FREE samples and coupons found around the Internet. All you have to do is request samples of desired brand products and receive them absolutely free. It really makes exploring new brands of all kinds simple and easy. And when you are planning a wedding, simplifying any part of the planning process is important.
Are you planning a honeymoon to a Spanish-speaking destination, but your high school Spanish is a bit rusty? Or maybe you don’t speak Spanish at all? I just came across this simple and affordable app that’s available on iTunes – Spanish Verb Chart.
Spanish Verb Chart is an electronic, concise, and comprehensive six page application iChart that illustrates the correct conjugations of the 14 basic verb tenses of the Spanish language, in both regular and irregular formats. So when you think that you are between a communication rock and a hard place, in reality you are just a few clicks away from being able to say what you need to say.
Spanish Verb Chart app downloads quickly to your iPhone or iPad, and can even be used on a personal computer. Forget old fashioned text books or having to carry around a translation dictionary and thumb through page after page. Spanish Verb Chart is a self-teaching tool for both beginning and advanced learning levels.
And guess what? It’s only $3.99, and so buy the Spanish Verb Chart app online today.
Don’t forget – October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Amazon has a lot of great products to raise funds for and to be used as tools to help create visibility for Breast Cancer Awareness.
Please lend a hand and a heart to this important cause.
Recently I started juicing. That’s right - juicing! I used to buy a lot of 100% natural or 100% juice products at Wegman’s or Whole Foods, but then I decided to explore the concept of juicing more. Why? The older I get, then the more health conscious I am becoming. Of course after heavy doses of late night TV and “Googling” keywords related to living a healthier lifestyle without having to become Vegan or make huge adjustments, I decided to make juicing part of my week. Not part of my every day life, but part of my week in order to keep things simple.
By breaking down fruit and vegetable fibers and smashing them into liquid form, juicing allows the body to more easily absorb nutrients. Although I don’t think I have digestive issues, many people may have harmed their digestive tract by ingesting less-than-perfect food choices throughout the years. Yes, those spicy wings and hotdogs that you might shovel down your throat during football season just might someday catch up to you! From my research, the process of juicing will aide to "pre-digest" food nutrients, which in turn allows for better absorption. In theory, your body will better receive almost any given foods nutritional properties, rather than having them just pass through the body and literally be flushed down a toilet.
Another benefit of juicing is that you can better consume a nice amount of vegetables and fruits without feeling bloated. The juicing process allows you to ingest larger amounts, yet in a more efficient manner. Think of it as astronaut food; juice is compact, and goes down quickly and smoothly.
With juicing, you can enjoy a greater variety of fruits and vegetables, and alter combinations to create unique tastes. Eating the exact same vegetables in salads every day becomes boring. Your food selection should be rotated as to keep your palate fresh, and also it helps to avoid food allergies. Juicing allows for a much wider variety of fruits and vegetables - including many that you may not enjoy eating whole or that may be difficult to prepare in general.
Years ago while shopping in Bloomingdales, I saw a demonstration for a very elaborate juicing machine. It looked great, and I ended up buying one for the “low” price of just $275.00. It was a complicated machine, and cleaning it also took a very long time as well. Yikes!
But since I’ve been hearing more about juicing, and thanks to the powers of late night infomercials, I came across the Nutri Bullet. This device seemed quick and easy to use, and above all it’s quick and easy to clean. I don’t juice every day, but when I do I enjoy the process. The recipe book has some pretty adventurous concoctions, but one that I utilize after a football Sunday’s worth of goodies that I normally avoid during the week (i.e. wings, burgers, beer) aides in the detoxifying process (and with no suffering - it’s as smooth as a smoothie). This particular recipe, which has a few variations, will no doubt come in handy a day or two after attending a wedding reception as well. Overall, I find the Nutri Bullit to be an easy machine to use. It was only $125.00 as well. Keep in mind that juicing is not for everyone, so please consult a doctor before you make changes to your eating habits of lifestyle.
Anyone interested in buying a $275.00 juicer? It’s barely been used.
I have been to quite a few weddings in my time. Part of witnessing and being a part of the wedding planning process is watching a lot of friends work so hard to lose weight and get in shape before their wedding. It seemed like a difficult journey, and one with some suffering and sacrifice, so I decided long ago that I didn't want to go through that. So throughout the years I've kept my weight down by following a few simple concepts.
Before I go on, let me give full disclosure. I work out a few times a week, but nothing heavy. I am a big fan of the elliptical machine, and a half hour an elliptical machine keeps me in fairly good shape. I also play ice hockey once a week. But I truly believe that my simple approach to eating and exercise is why I am actually the same weight as when I graduated high school (195 lbs. at 6 foot 2 inches tall). So while I do exercise, I am not considered a fanatic.
Here are some tips that have worked for me. Please keep in mind that they are not for everyone, and please consult a doctor or nutritionist before you try anything I suggest.
Eat a salad every day with yogurt dressing. I get a great yogurt dressing at Wegman’s, and it’s lower in salt content than regular salad dressing. And a big salad loaded with vegetables is filling. While salads sound boring, changing the lettuce type every few days keeps the flavors fresh, and adding different meats makes it more of a meal.
Drink a lot of high quality water. My favorites are Eternal High Alkaline Spring Water, Smart Water, and a little known brand called Blue Delta. I find that higher quality water is also more filling as well as better tasting. Alkaline water also has additional health benefits; it helps your natural pH balance.
When I feel sluggish, I try and do a simple exercise while watching television. A slow march in place while watching SportsCenter for twenty minutes keeps me feeling fresh, and it’s low impact. So rather than just lounging and doing nothing, exerting a small amount of effort during a time when I am normally sitting around makes me feel better than doing nothing.
What works for me is that my diet has a nice amount of garlic. I make a lot of whole wheat pasta with garlic in the sauce, and it keeps my metabolism high. I also take 1,000 mg of odorless garlic most days, along with 16 oz. of Arizona Diet Iced Tea. Garlic is not for everyone, so be careful if you are on medication. Ask your doctor before you add more garlic to your diet.
If you want to engage in a high impact exercise program, then I recommend the Insanity Workout. It’s a program that requires nothing more than the ability to jump, move and stretch. At first I thought it would be easy, but it was difficult (even at the beginner level). But after a few days, the results were noticeable. The instructor encourages you to go at your own pace until you get used to the Insanity Workout, so it’s a comfortable system that you can ease into. I don’t do it regularly, but instead inject it into my week when I feel I need a change of pace. Please consult your doctor before getting involved with an exercise program.
I live a pretty simple life, eat simple foods and exercise just above the minimum to keep weight off without killing myself. While watching a co-worker endure a cayenne pepper-lemon water diet weeks before her wedding, I made sure to eat more vegetables and drink more water so that I would never have to do that! It looked unpleasant.
These tips are not for everyone, but hopefully a few readers can see how easy it may be to stay at a reasonable weight and be reasonably healthy. I don't overly exert or over tax my body in any way. But keep in mind that I am not a doctor, nor have I played one on TV! This is just my opinion about what my body reacts to, so research what may be best for your body type, current weight, etc.
Happy wedding planning!
Disclaimer: These are only suggestions, and examples of what works for my body. These are not universal tips that will work for everyone. Please consult a doctor and or nutritionist before you try anything mentioned in this post.
I was just reading an article featured on The Huffington Post about bridal registry and gift giving in general. There were a few comments by readers about what may be and what may not be the right thinking behind the wedding gift process, so of course this sparked a debate among my industry peers. A few of the younger guys thought that the ultimate gift would be a “dream TV,” and that guests that know each other could pool their resources for a great high definition television. A lot of people really love watching movies and sports, so why not enjoy your viewing with something that is spectacular?
Then this morning, Yahoo! News featured some of the nicest HD TVs on the market today. So if home entertainment is your “thing,” here are some suggestions. Dream big!
Here is a 90-inch television that combines viewing pleasure with social media needs! That’s right – 90 inches! Your media room will resemble an interactive movie theater with this model., Sharp's 90-inch LED TV (model # LC-90LE745U; $9,699.99) has everything a tech geek wants: a 1080p panel couple 120Hz frame doubling for incredible motion; full-array LED backlighting for rich colors and high contrast (5000:1 contrast ratio); Full HD active 3D technology; and built-in Wi-Fi, apps and Skype. It actually might be easier to list what it DOESN’T have!
Something that is a little more down to Earth is Mitsubishi’s 92-Inch 1080p 3D Projection TV (model # WD-92840). If you can spare all the tech add-ons, then this will get the job done. It’s under $3,000, and a few couples can easily afford it if a joint gift is the way to go. You get the big picture without having to spend the big money. And the reviews are excellent!
There are a lot of high definition televisions on the market today at a variety of prices. If you are looking to give one as a wedding gift, then be sure to do a little research and read online reviews.
If diamonds are a girl’s best friend, then this diamond bracelet
will make YOU her other best friend as well. Available online at Amazon.com, here’s a stunning 25.95ct diamond bracelet that is sure to take any woman’s breath away (so you better know CPR).
This featured 18kt gold bracelet possesses 160 princess cut stones, 80 baguettes and 160 round brilliant diamonds all together. It is one serious piece of BLING that has a list price of $105,000.00, but is on sale as of this post’s writing (October 2, 2012) for $64,999.00. That’s a savings of 38% if it was indeed sold at it highest possible list price.
Offered by Blount Jewels, this spectacular diamond bracelet will ship within 6 to 10 business days, which leads me to believe that it is made to order and not stocked like less expensive jewelry can be. Be sure to take advantage of the price break – especially with Christmas right around the corner!
Are you thinking about booking a band for your wedding in the New York Metro area? If you are, then check out Steve Wexler and The Top Shelf. With three live shows coming up at New York City’s DROM (October 4, November 1 and December 6, 2012), New York City and other suburban-area future brides and groom can see the band live for just $10.00. It’s a great chance to have an affordable night out and really enjoy a superb live band. And you never know – you might find yourself dancing to Steve Wexler and The Top Shelf right after you say “I do!”
Whether you are planning your own wedding or for someone else, you're probably aware of how challenging the process can be. The information you will find in this article is sure to be of help in keeping you informed and prepared for your wedding or a loved one's.
If you cannot justify the cost of a thousand-dollar wedding cake, consider contacting a local bakery and inquiring about single-serving portions, like cupcakes or cake pops. Many bakeries will offer healthier options, such as 100-calorie cupcakes, fruit fillings, meringue toppings, or gluten-free ingredients.
Employ a good friend or relative, as long as they can haul your equipment and gear through the evening. The assistant can help line up family members and round them up for group shots.
If you have a large wedding cake decorated in brightly colored icing that has its own stand, consider placing the stand on some color-coordinated fabric to create a stunning focal piece. Whether you choose patterns or solids, the fabric should add another dimension of visual interest and help to tie your wedding cake in with your wedding theme.
If you are hoping to wear some special jewelry of your wedding day but only have a limited amount of money left in your budget, consider renting some diamond pieces. This will allow you to look stunning without actually having to invest in the diamonds.
Find a wedding consultant that can guide you as you organize your wedding, and help you on your special day. Weddings tend to be stressful and many things can go wrong. A professional wedding consultant is well versed in handling these many details and any problems that may arise. You and those who care about you should have a relaxing and enjoyable time at the wedding and reception.
Don't just fixate on a dress you saw in a wedding magazine. Understand what dress style looks best on you and focus on that. If you are under 5"4', step away from the normal dress section and make a beeline for the petite dresses. Your wedding will be much less of a hassle if you do.
Match.com, via Yahoo!, has some great romantic fall getaways for you and your loved one. Be sure to get out for a nice weekend while the weather is still warm enough to enjoy. After all, winter’s chill is fast approaching; it comes quicker than you think!
Here are some of the suggested locations:
Boston, MA - Boston in the fall is a city with gorgeous scenery and fantastic indoor activities (such as candlelit meals, museums, and shops). But it’s the beauty of leaves turning colors along New England’s lush landscapes that make a trip here worth while.
Sonoma, CA - Just 40 miles north of San Francisco, Sonoma boasts spectacular restaurants, where you can savor dishes from some of the top chefs in the country. The area is known for its spa experiences as well.
Chicago, IL - The Chicagoland area is full of romantic bed-and-breakfasts/hotels, colorful neighborhoods, and fantastic restaurants perfectly suited for starry-eyed couples. Too bad their beloved Cubs won’t be playing in The Fall Classic this year!
For more fall romantic getaway ideas, read Match.com’s “The 10 Most Romantic Fall Getaways.”
The Wall Street Journal features a very nice article about how a couple keeps their marriage alive after being married for almost ten years. In this day and age, there are a lot of responsibilities for new couples, and often individuals can find themselves drained of energy. This short article is about understanding and compromise.
Read - Wedding Vows, Under Revision.
Well, it turns out that Russia may have had a little diamond-related trickery up their sleeves, as they were protecting a cache of trillions of carats in diamonds. Created from the impact of an enormous meteor hitting an existing deposit of diamonds in the ground, impact diamonds have been previously found in meteor craters.
Christian Science Monitor reports that “trillions of carats” in diamonds lie below a 35-million-year-old, 62-mile diameter asteroid crater located in eastern Siberia. The crater is named Popigai Astroblem, and apparently our Russian friends have known about this diamond discovery as far back as the 1970s.
It has been kept a secret for a simple reason - the USSR's own huge operations were already producing immense profits in what was then a tightly controlled world market. An influx of diamonds would only drop diamond prices. Now, in a challenging world economy, lower diamond prices and diamond jewelry prices just could stimulate sales all over. This newly released news may even impact world gem markets right down to their core: this diamond discovery may possibly supply global markets for another 3,000 years.
Are you looking for a wedding ring that is ALMOST like what you see in the showcase, but your heart tells you that you want something that’s a little bit different? American wedding band manufacturer Novell Design Studio has built their reputation on being able to make changes to their designs. The term “what you see is what you get” does not apply to this company! And every ring is made to order, which is one reason how they can be so flexible.
Visit Novell’s wedding band website today!
There’s an interesting online petition that’s asking jewelry retailers to stop pushing tungsten wedding rings to consumers because they break. It’s true, a tungsten wedding ring can break if dropped or hit just right. But the problem in the jewelry industry is that a lot of retailers have put their eggs in the tungsten basket. A few manufacturers have as well by paying a licensing fee and royalties on a patent that can be viewed as questionable in many cases.
Overall, tungsten has its place in the jewelry industry, but unfortunately the retail segment over-valued and over-priced tungsten as a whole. Tungsten rings used to cost between $200 and $300. The retailers’ cry of “the consumers want it” has been heard over the last few years. So has – “nobody wants precious metals any more.” Really? Nobody? Keep in mind that a precious metal ring can be resized, refinished, and although you pay more now, you get what you pay for! If you want one, then buy a tungsten ring on Amazon for $29.99 or $19.99. That’s all they are really worth. How can a store operate selling merchandise for under $100? That’s a lot of volume! Tungsten rings are a sell direct product that has popularity, but does not have much intrinsic value. It’s costume jewelry for the wedding finger.
In my opinion, retails should get back into precious metals for their own profit and to offer better value to the consumers. Bigger, branded stores that are their own entity “get it.” Many larger non-chain stores do have precious metal wedding rings in their showcases. But quite a few medium and smaller stores gave up a long time ago based upon the reaction of the small sampling of consumers that visited their locations looking to buy their wedding ring, and a CHEAP wedding ring at that. Yes – many men want a less expensive ring, so tungsten has its place. I hate the fact that a store can lose a sale to online retailers. Then again, if you preach the value of a precious metal ring, a certain portion may just spend more money on one! But if you can't show the merchandise, then you can’t always make the sale.
If you agree, please sign the online petition - Jewelry retailers: Stop selling wedding rings that break!
A Scottish couple had a wedding curveball thrown at them when their ceremony was interrupted due to small problem – the groom lost his bride’s wedding ring. The bride’s mother provided a substitute, and allowed the couple to use her own ring for the nuptials. Later on, the ring was found in a crack in a the wooden stairs leading to the church, and all was right in their wedding world!
Now there are a lot of great ways to propose, but I am not sure this is one.
A man actually FAKED HIS DEATH to propose! The scene was complete with a crash scene which he paid a lot of money to stage. When his girlfriend showed up to meet him, all she saw was a gory car crash scene with her boyfriend’s bloody body lying on the road. He even had a “paramedic” tell her that he was dead.
Read more about this at Engagement 101 - This guy faked his death to propose!
I was just checking out what’s going on a Blue Nile (for about the 100th time this year), and I have to say that they probably do the best bridal jewelry photography in the online jewelry industry. In addition to multiple views featuring better then crystal clear photography, which captures every millimeter of featured designs with outstanding sharpness, there also is a video to provide a 360 degree view.
Check out this platinum engagement ring and see for yourself!
This is just too funny. Here’s a great engagement ring set featured on a Pinterest board entitled - My boyfriend would kill me if he saw this board!
With the amount of weddings being planned every year, there are bound to be many couples that never make it to the wedding chapel or catering hall and call off their plans. The New York Times reports about the money left on the table from canceled weddings and the potential opportunity for a specialized brokerage firm to grab some of it. Weddings are a $40 billion industry with 250,000 canceled events every year. Many lose their deposits, so why not offer an opportunity to buy someone’s wedding plans at a discount? Honestly, I never thought about the idea that wedding plans could be transferred.
Read - Pitching a Brokerage Service for Canceled Weddings.
Here’s a tungsten wedding ring that was owned by my friend Jack. When Jack got married a few years ago, he heard that tungsten was the best metal for him as he does a lot of manual labor with his hands. And since I work in the wedding ring industry, I was happy to see if I could get one for him. As it turns out, I could, and he really liked the ring. Tungsten seemed to be a good metal for his needs. I did warn him that a tungsten ring can not be sized, so what he sees is what he gets.
Now, a few years later, this is the condition of his ring. While tungsten seemed to be the right choice, the ring broke most likely through a combination of normal wear and tear, and him dropping it into his bathroom sink. I mention normal wear and tear because any piece of jewelry will show signs of being worn over time. The tungsten ring didn’t appear to be scratched badly at all, but a normal drop into a sink actually broke the design. The ring was not hammered, cut or abnormally abused in any way. Jack wore the ring every day, and although he works a lot with his hands, the type of work he does is not unusually taxing; he’s actually been on vacation all summer long.
A simple (and accidental) drop into a bathroom sink will not damage a precious metal wedding ring. My precious metal ring shows signs of wear and tear, but it can be refinished, resized and won’t break apart from a normal event. So while tungsten has its place in the industry, be aware that there can be issues with a material that has been called indestructible.
Please note: This is a true story. The Wedding Ring Blog writes about the pros and cons of almost any metal used in bridal jewelry.
Last month, I attended a wedding, and one of the attractions for the guests was an old fashioned photo booth. In case you don’t know, a photo booth is an old boardwalk attraction which allows you and your friends to cram inside a box, pull a curtain, insert a small amount of money (although at the wedding its obviously free), then get four or five pictures taken in a row and presented to you in a filmstrip-style printout. You know when the pictures are about to be taken, so you can change your expressions and positioning to be as serious or silly as you want.
I went to this photo booth twice, - once with a group and once with my wife. The wedded couple gets a copy for their album, and I was glad to have copies to place on my fridge and giggle at whenever I went for some juice or a snack. A photo booth at a wedding breaks the ice with others seated at your table as well. The rally cry of “let’s do it” can put total strangers on the same page!
See a photo booth in action at a wedding in this photo booth video.
Not a sound; only the splash of waves rolling onto the beach and sighs of relaxation and satisfaction. The beautiful beach stretched out in front of us, baked in the sun’s afternoon rays and contrasted by a clear sky and the dark and tropical blues of the glinting sea. There was nobody in sight; the horizon only broken by the dark, jutting rocks that seemed to embrace the entire bay. To be enjoying a honeymoon on such an island was a joy, and more so knowing that it’s in my home country: Scotland. Yes, we were lapping up the beach life in Arran, off Scotland’s West Coast.
Unlike tropical islands Arran certainly doesn’t enjoy sunny skies all the time, but the conditions were far removed from the pouring rain and gales tearing into the rest of the UK at the time. Sun block was a must under the uninterrupted blue skies we benefitted from in the latter part of our trip, but most importantly when the dark clouds rolled in forebodingly over the hills and mountainous peaks it only served up more incredible and atmospheric panoramas. The photos from this part of the trip glow with a romantic and near spiritual feel, and are equally breathtaking as anything we saw.
Our accommodation for the honeymoon was a traditional Scottish self-catering cottage in Lamlash, owned by friends of the now-inlaws. It was right on the beach – close enough to be carried over the sandy threshold? – and looked directly out onto the sea and a smaller island along the bay. It was a wonderful, relaxing, quiet space in which to retreat and enjoy each others’ company following the ‘go go go’ of the wedding.
Aside from the beaches, Arran has some wonderful attractions like Brodrick Castle, the awe-inspiring Machrie Moor Standing Stones, the King’s Cave walk and even seven golf courses. However it’s hard to not always be pining for the beaches: seeming to pop out after every corner, from the colourful stone formations of Whiting Bay to the charcoal outcrops breaking through Dougarie’s long sandy stretches, the patterns of shades and shimmering colours are hard not to stop and admire.
After an exciting wedding and a honeymoon to remember, it’s now a question of where next in surprising Scotland?
This guest post is by Emma, who has just returned from her honeymoon in Arran to write for Embrace Scotland, the holiday accommodation provider.
This guest post is presented by Videojug, known as the best place for factual how-to video content. All videos are create professionally in-house and are catered to various categories from money to dating.
Planning a wedding is one of those wonderful paradoxes, in that it is the most exciting time of your life yet also one of the most stressful. Perhaps the only thing that comes close in the excitement/stress measure would be moving house, but then you do not usually have your whole family and friendship circle watching you do that.
Weddings are often made by the venue in which they are held; how can you select the perfect venue for you?
Time of Year
Although in all the excitement you probably want to get married tomorrow, considering the time of year is all important when it comes to the venue. If you are looking at a venue where you can hold an outdoor reception then obviously summer will be your best option. Regardless of this, summer is generally the most popular time for weddings anyway so you will need to be quick in terms of finding somewhere and booking it.
We touched on this just now with regards to the weather, however guests actually getting there will need to be considered, too. If you have the finances and want to, then getting married abroad is often a great option. This means you do not actually need to invite anyone to the wedding itself and, better yet, they will all understand!
You can then have a reception or party when you get back home at a later date.
For couples whose extended families and friends live far apart because of where they are originally from, you may need some diplomatic skills, although getting married where the female partner is from in generally the norm.
What Type of Wedding?
There are two main considerations in this regard. Firstly, for convenience, do you wish to hold the wedding, reception, and evening party in the same place, and is there going to be a set theme to the day?
While the traditional church wedding is still much loved, the popularity of registry office weddings is steadily increasing, while venues such as castle’s and hotels are also seeing many more ceremonies than ever before.
The biggest consideration to make is whether or not each venue is likely to be used by anyone else throughout the day. I once attended a wedding where the venue had also been booked for an 18th birthday party in the evening, which was frankly ridiculous. Seek assurances that you will have the time, space, and attention from the venue staff to make your day as magical as you have planned.
Traveling to an exotic yet still affordable honeymoon or vacation destination can be a difficult thing to do in such a tough economy. But there’s one place that is exciting yet still affordable, and that place is Belize. Located in the Caribbean, and accessible from key airport hubs such as Houston, Philadelphia and Atlanta, Belize is a location that you should consider. Airfare is currently reasonable, and there’s plenty to do! Or even just do NOTHING at all! Even if the flight in your area is on the expensive side, you can save a lot because a Belizean experience doesn’t have to be expensive.
See why Belize is the Top Honeymoon Destination for 2012.
Pink just drives me wild! Here are some great examples of utilizing pink gold in fashion jewelry that are currently featured on Pinterest.
Growing up, I had a pair a camouflage cargo pants that were considered to be very cool for their time. And now and again, I like to put on a camouflage t-shirt just because I feel like it. But I never, ever thought of utilizing a camouflage pattern for jewelry, not had I ever really seen any with that pattern. That is – until now!
Amazon.com has a very nice titanium and enamel camouflage wedding ring that’s 9mm wide and pretty thick. I like the way it looks, although it does not appear to have a traditional camouflage pattern, but that may be because the surface area for the design is pretty small. And jewelry company Lashbrook Designs has inlayed camouflage patterns on anodized aluminum, while the rings themselves are created in titanium, black zirconium or cobalt chrome. While these styles all look great, always keep in mind that they can not be resized because they are not made from precious metals like gold, platinum, silver or palladium.
Apparently this video featuring a bride singing Christina Aguilera's "The Right Man" has created quite some buzz. The four-minute clip of bride Marie Carr belting it out had attracted nearly 617,000 views on YouTube at last check. While generally user comments about the clip have been positive, many have viewed this as a self-centered act intended to put more attention on the bride. Well, if that really is the case, then should anyone really care? A wedding is THE BRIDE’s day. If she wants to sing in honor of her new husband, then she should. This is just an example of how social media and Internet forums allow the inner critic, which is mainly anonymous, to talk about things unfiltered and with reckless abandon.
I, for one, enjoy the sentiment behind this performance!
Watch the video - Bride sings walking down the aisle.
Just a few great looking wedding rings by American bridal jewelry manufacturer Lieberfarb. Check out their boards on Pinterest.
So, The Daily News reports about this anti-cheating ring, and it opens up a lot of debate. But there’s a real issue, and its one that seems to be lost on the general audience.
For those that don’t know, the website TheCheeky.com is selling a titanium wedding ring for men that imprints the phrase “I’m Married” on a finger for $550. Reader comments for the story generally talk about the idea of cheating, and what a stupid idea this wedding ring is. But one very important fact is totally missed – this ring is made from titanium! That’s right – titanium! And for $550! Instead of imprinting “I’m Married,” it should imprint that $550 is way too much for a titanium wedding ring.
Titanium is generally a cheap material for wedding rings, and if you don’t believe me, then check out these cheap titanium rings on Amazon.com. This ring should be sold for about $50, and that’s being generous because of the novelty. While it is understandable that men want to buy a titanium ring, titanium is inexpensive and can not be sized.
Actually, here are some titanium wedding rings priced in the $150 to $250 range, but they incorporate diamonds and precious metals.
The Wedding Ring Blog is a secret love of mine, as I have always enjoyed blogging. When first created the blog, my focus was strictly about my company’s bridal jewelry products. Then, upon thinking about it, I realized that was not very interesting by itself. A blog only about all ME all of the time? How boring!
Eventually I came up with some basic principles of blogging that helped The Wedding Ring Blog grow without having to spend a dime on advertising. Interested? Then please check out the article - Six Ways to Make Your Blog Better!