Don't be a brat and other inexpert advice on choosing your wedding bands

  • A wedding band from Radcliffe's.
A wedding band from Radcliffe's.
September 05, 2012|By Megan Isennock, Special to The Baltimore Sun

With six weeks until our wedding, Rob and I took a trip to Radcliffe's in Towson to pick out our bands. Below are a few tips. in my inexpert opinion. 

 Take your time. We were lucky to have a really lovely woman assist us at Radcliffe's, and we never felt pressured to make a snap decision. If you do feel that you're being rushed, ask for a new sales person, or go to another store. You have to look at this thing for the rest of your life (or marriage, ha) and you should be sure you’re both happy with what you choose.

 Let yourself be surprised. I was expecting to pick a simple gold band, or something with pave, and instead walked out with a ring I never would have asked to try on, and couldn’t love more. Your knuckle will swell, some rings may get stuck and need to be removed with Windex and elbow grease, but try lots of different options and keep an open mind.

 The rings should “go” not “match.” Since my engagement ring is canary in a gold setting, I assumed my band would be similar. I tried on some really beautiful canary pave, but they didn't look right. In the end, we chose a band with inset diamond baguettes which echo the two baguettes on my engagement ring. There’s a compliment, but not a redundancy.

 Experiment with color. Two canary rings looked a little crazy together, but if your engagement ring is diamond, consider an alternative stone in your band. A friend of mine has a diamond ring and a sapphire and diamond band, and they look stunning and unexpected together. There will be times when you choose to wear your band alone, and adding color to it will make it stand out. 

 Listen. Though the band is ultimately your decision, listen to your fiancé and sales person. I found myself ignoring everything but my left hand and the goods under the glass, and quickly snapped out of it. Rob’s opinion is important to me (and I think he has great taste), and it was easier to narrow down my options once we both got into it. Our sales woman was very honest and helped guide me toward me decisions without making them for me. The more collaborative the effort, the happier you'll be with your choice, and the quicker you can give your finger a rest.

 Don't be a brat. Couples tend to pick bands close to the wedding, when stress is mounting. Go in with a budget and an open mind, and remember that your fiance is also there to pick out a ring. A lot of wedding planning is accomplished with a "divide and conquer" attitude, so revel in the opportunity to help each other. It's a special thing to do together and is an indicator that you're in the wedding homestretch. Also, don't be a brat in other situations, too. 

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