This is a little series of blogs where some of our favorite engagement ring designers tell us how they imagined and then created their own engagement rings. Here for our third entry in the already critically acclaimed series "My Engagement Ring Story" : Emily Chelsea Jewelry specializes in custom designed engagement rings and wedding bands. Meticulously designed and expertly crafted, Emily Chelsea Jewelry is first designed with precision and accuracy then finished by hand for a handcrafted look. Emily is the person we go to when we have a client who has a super custom vision. Think words like "low sitting toasty butterfly" - Emily, we know you know what this means. Help! Not only is she a sister ring whisperer but this woman walks the walk. Emily Chelsea Jewelry is a proud member of Ethical Metalsmiths and is committed to social responsibility and equality. Her custom creations are made from 100% recycled precious metals or Fairmined Gold and ethically sourced diamonds and gemstones as often as possible AND is a Graduate Gemologist through the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). I mean. This gal. SO without further ado, check out what she made for herself!
What are the stats?
Pear shaped rose cut gray diamond in an 18k yellow gold bezel setting by April Higashi. I originally wanted an amorphous green sapphire and was convinced that he would have plenty of options to choose from. I gave him some specifics but told him to choose the stone. In the beginning of the search, they found a great candidate, but because I was quite naive about it, I said yes but more green (thinking it would be out there). The search went on for over a year. At Christmas time, after telling all of my friends that surely, he would be proposing I finally broke down and asked him why he hadn’t. I thought maybe he would say they are putting the finishing touches on the ring but he said they still hadn’t found the stone. I was shocked.
After being schooled by my boyfriend on why what I was looking for was actually a needle in a haystack, I finally began to understand. He came with me to Tucson that February and we picked out a pear shaped rose cut diamond together. I realized I had wanted a fresh start from the green sapphire debacle and we both loved this new diamond.
How did you come up with the concept?
I always knew I wanted a solitaire, something simple. I knew I wanted to have 2 wedding bands and was planning on getting creative with that so I left the engagement ring simple.
Did you work on it with your partner? How was that?
My poor, poor partner. I basically kept telling him: “What I want is out there and there are plenty of it (the center stone)! And I want you to pick it out, but make sure it is X,Y, Z… oh and this, this, and this…. I was actually really specific and probably his worst nightmare. He was afraid that he wouldn’t get exactly what I wanted so we ended up working on it together in the end.
Did you always know what you wanted to design?
Pretty much. I met April Higashi 5 years ago and after seeing her work, I knew I wanted a piece by her.
What’s your favorite detail or part of the ring?
Because it is translucent, the diamond looks different every day. Some days I can see deep into the ring and other days, I just notice the inclusions toward the surface. It has a little bit of iron oxide staining deep in the middle and I love when I catch a glimpse of that.
Did you go over budget?
If your ring was worn by a mythical character (ehm ehm you), how would you describe that character? Does it have a special power?
Dark and stormy and full of mystery. Just like my diamond. Oh and can see into the future. :)
Is there advice you usually give clients that you didn’t take yourself? Or something you learned in the process that you now share with your clients?
I share my experience often since I had learned so much through the process. I felt so silly that even I, a jewelry designer and gemologist, could send my boyfriend on a wild goose chase for a stone that may have only existed once. There are so many times that we see a gem in a piece of jewelry or on Pinterest and are convinced that we can have one identical to it. But gems are truly one of a kind. If you have your heart set on something, then something has to give- and it is usually your timeline or budget. If there is no wiggle room, then I encourage clients to be more open. Once we get a certain image out of our heads, it opens up so many possibilities with other truly beautiful stones. And that first green sapphire that I thought wasn’t green enough? My very wonderful partner managed to buy it as well and we made it into a right hand ring that I wear almost every day. And yes, it is so, so green. He occasionally asks if I wish it were my engagement ring, but I don’t. I love the ring he proposed to me with and I love that we chose the stone together.