What Do You Do with Jewelry Keepsakes?
Are your divorce diamonds considered jewelry keepsakes? What To Do With Them? I’m going to go over two different situations, much with the same results.
Here is my current engagement ring – Let me tell you the story behind it.
I was divorced in 2001 after close to twenty years of marriage. I had accumulated not only my engagement ring, but several other diamond and gemstone rings. I didn’t know what to do with them.
From my ex husband starting out in jewelry early in our relationship, I was shocked to see how little people actually got back for their rings if they tried to sell them back. Ebay or Craigs list was always an option.
I considered giving them to my son’s, but it just seemed like “divorce diamonds” weren’t a real great gift to give your boys to give to their future wives.
Dave and I discussed an option when we were dating, knowing we were getting close to being engaged. He knew I had a pretty good idea of a ring I wanted to have, and I knew he was a pretty frugal guy. We didn’t have a lot of extra money to put into an engagement ring.
Dave did want to surprise me (which he did…. another story) when he asked me to marry him. He did go ring shopping and picked out an engagement ring, but also told the clerk there was a really good chance he would be returning it.
What we did, was to go to a jeweler that I knew and trusted and we designed my ring. I took in the several rings that I had, including my engagement ring and we did an exchange. Dave would not agree to let me use the main diamond from the old engagement ring (we picked one out together) but we did use all the little diamonds from the different rings in my new ring. To get the perfect sizes etc the jeweler actually exchanged them out evenly so none of the exact same diamonds are now in this ring. He also used the gold from those ring for the gold in my new ring. So we only had the cost of the main diamond and the jewelers time. The rings also helped pay for some of the other costs.
I got the ring I wanted and ended up saving Dave over $2,000 from the ring he originally had picked out for me.
The ring has both yellow gold and white gold in it (which I wanted). I kept my wedding band super simple since my engagement ring was fairly ornate. It is cut to fit snug to the engagement ring, but isn’t in these pictures.
There is scroll work on the sies of it (that is hard to see in these pictures) and the jeweler was so pleased with it, he made it one of his “signature” rings. He won’t repeat the same ring, but he said he has only chosen about 50 pieces in his long career that he has made his signature pieces. It has his initials in one of the small gold circles on the sides.
My Mom and Grandmother’s Engagement Rings
My Mom passed away in 1999. Her engagement ring was slated to go to my older sister. Mom had her ring, and she also had a one diamond out of the double diamond ring of her mother’s (my Grandmother).
My sister doesn’t wear rings much at all, and she was going to take Mom’s diamond and make a necklace out of it. I was going to get Grandmother’s loose diamond and make a ring out of it. So she decided the best thing to do was to give me Mom’s ring and she would take Grandmother’s diamond.
We found Grandmother’s engagement ring in Mom’s jewelry box, with the two empty shanks where her diamonds had been. (one diamond had gone to Mom, the other to her sister). Kathy was fine with me having Grandmother’s empty ring also.
I decided that I wanted one ring – with both Mom and Grandmothers engagement rings attached. I took my idea and the rings to several jewelers. One wanted to do some fancy ring that didn’t look anything like their rings with the materials I had. I told him that wasn’t what I wanted. I wanted the ring to look just like their rings. It was in their memory.
I had another jeweler tell me that would look dumb. I left.
Then I went to Michael of Jewelry by Michael. He was nice, he worked through what I wanted and he made me a ring that I cherish and wear everyday on my right ring finger.
Mom’s ring is the single diamond and Grandmothers is the double ring. The rings are both white gold, but I wear both yellow and white gold so I had him put yellow gold inbetween them to attach them. There isn’t a time that I look at this ring and don’t think of Mom and Grandmother.
These rings could have sat in my jewelry box, gather dust… but instead I wear them everyday in memory of my Mom and Grandmother.
See if there is a solution for special keepsakes to actually enjoy them and use them. As for the divorce diamonds, you could also give the rings to a child (if you can’t use them) and have them exchange the materials for a ring for someone else (if you are comfortable with that).
Just be sure to find a jeweler that you can trust and that you know will do right by you.