How we found our rings

Four couples tell us the story behind the search for their wedding bands

Words by Ann Russell

Louise and Andrew Landsburgh

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Louise’s Anna collection engagement ring and sparkling wedding band

When and where Louise and Andrew got married on 21st December 2013 at The Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh.
The rings Louise has a platinum round-cut diamond cluster engagement ring and a platinum channel-set diamond wedding ring, both from Laing Edinburgh. “We were Christmas shopping and Andrew suggested we walk home via Laing. We were looking in the shop window when he proposed. I burst into tears!” she says.
Decision-making Louise didn’t have a set style in mind. “Andrew doesn’t wear jewellery so he was quite happy to focus on choosing my ring,” she says. “I tried on six or seven and found it hard to decide. I thought about them all night and when we went back the next day I knew which was the one for me.”
The jewellers “Laing is a family-run business which Andrew liked – he knew it had a good reputation. The staff made us feel really special – we even got a glass of champagne to celebrate. We had such a good experience choosing my engagement ring that we knew we wouldn’t go anywhere else for the wedding ring,” adds Louise.
Words of wisdom “Stay open-minded and try your engagement ring with different wedding ring options to see how the two look together.”
Laing Edinburgh, 0131 225 4513, www.laingthejeweller.com


Helen and Simone Bertolacci

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Photos: stuartnimmophoto.com

When and where The couple were married on 31st March 2013 at Lodge on Loch Lomond.
The rings Helen has a white gold solitaire diamond engagement ring and a white gold wishbone-shaped wedding band with diamonds on one side. Simone wanted a Celtic design in palladium, known for its durability. Their wedding rings were made by Jane Fleming at La10 by Celtic Art.
Decision-making “Simone is a chef and only gets certain days off so we were really impressed that Jane made the effort to visit us at home. She came with half a dozen hand-sketched designs for each of us and we discussed the differ­ent types of metals and design techniques involved. A few weeks later we had a 3D drawing of our rings, which was so exciting. The design process only took a couple of months and we had our rings in plenty of time for the wedding.”
The jewellers “Our expectations were definitely exceeded. We told La10 what we wanted to spend and they worked within that budget. The experience was completely personal and we’re so happy to have unique rings. Simone’s ring looks like a traditional Celtic design but when you look closely you can see it’s made up of our initials. It’s so subtle,” says Helen.
Words of wisdom “I’m not very arty so I hadn’t considered getting rings made,” says Helen. “But it’s definitely worth doing. When we first thought about it, I worried it would be too expensive, but Jane worked to our budget and created something totally bespoke.”
La10, www.la10.co.uk


Shona and Graham Johnston

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Photos: orkneyphotographic.co.uk

Where and when The couple tied the knot on 19th February 2011 at the Italian Chapel in Orkney.
The rings “I was studying in Aberdeen so we got my engagement ring there, but I wanted to come home to Orkney for our wedding rings,” says Shona. With childhood connections to Sheila’s son Martin, Shona always knew she would get her wedding ring from local jewellery designer Sheila Fleet.
Decision-making “We went to choose our rings together and I didn’t feel any pressure to pick something, which was great. My wedding ring is made up of two separate bands that weave together, symbolising our two lives becoming one. It also reminds me of waves, which is fitting having grown up on an island. We also found a matte wedding band for Graham – it’s really smooth on the inside so fits his finger comfortably.”
The jewellers “The shop on Orkney is so airy and relaxed with a lovely laid-back atmosphere,” says Shona. “We live a few miles away from the workshop so we know all about the quality of their jewellery. They were so friendly and it felt like they were genuinely excited for us. I love that they put pictures of newly engaged couples on their Facebook page – it’s such a personal touch.”
Words of wisdom Shona recommends some forward-thinking when it comes to choosing your rings. “Picture your engagement and wedding ring as one unit and consider how they’ll fit together. Think about the thickness of the rings and how practical they’ll be on your finger. And always ignore trends and stay true to your own style.”
Sheila Fleet, 01856 861203, www.sheilafleet.com


Sharon and Gregor McLeod

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The wedding bands made by John McKay Jewellers

Where and when The couple’s special day was 15th June 2013 at Ingliston Country Club in Bishopton.
The rings Sharon has an 18ct white gold marquise-cut diamond engagement ring that was remodelled by John McKay Jewellers to complement her 18ct white gold wedding band that she bought in the shop. Gregor works as a joiner and chose a practical 18ct white gold wedding ring with a matte finish.
Decision-making “I knew what shape of diamond I wanted but I wasn’t sure about the rest,” says Sharon. “We went to visit John McKay for our wedding rings and I ended up getting my engagement ring remodelled. They kept the original diamond and attached a new band that complements my wedding ring perfectly. My wedding ring is a simple band with a row of diamonds along the edge. I thought I would choose something plain but this one caught my eye.”
The jewellers Sharon’s family have used John McKay Jewellers for years so they felt like an obvious choice for the couple. “We felt really well informed and I absolutely love the rings we chose,” she says. “The jewellers have since made me an eternity ring that’s a mirror image of my other rings. And having my engagement ring remodelled meant I got exactly what I wanted.”
Words of wisdom Sharon advises other brides to keep an open mind and to take the jeweller’s recommendations on board. “My rings might not look extraordinary to other people but I know how much work has gone into them. I’m so grateful to John McKay for their advice because they made every effort to create a combination of rings that suit me perfectly,” she says.
John McKay Jewellers, 0141 889 4904, www.johnmckayjewellers.co.uk