It sounds almost like a contradiction, doesn’t it? A custom engagement ring bought online. Because while all engagement rings should be personal, a bespoke engagement ring designed just for you surrrely has no place on the internet. Surrrrrely, all custom engagement rings should be crafted in little boutique jewellers located in streets at least vaguely reminiscent of Diagon Alley, by elderly gents in gold-rimmed spectacles. Surely. Well, yes. But also, no. The internet does have this veneer of impersonality that seems entirely out of kilter with the purchase of such an intimate and precious item. But then again, the internet holds its own magic too. And part of that is the ability to connect people. And to take people to places where they’re really not. And that’s why a growing number of people are going online to create custom engagement rings of their own.
The Durham Rose design experience
Durham Rose is a real-life, physical jewellers with two walk-in studios. One in Essex, the other in Stratford, London. Our customers are very welcome to drop in and see us. But we do most of our business online. Why? Because customers find it easier. Why make a journey to southeast England when you can do everything you need to in your office, or front room? Including one-to-one chats and real-time design creation and editing. So, that’s the rationale, but how do you actually go about creating a custom engagement ring online?
Designing your custom engagement ring with Durham Rose
The Durham Rose design process is basically four-step:
2. Create and review your designs.
Our design consultations usually take place via online voice call. We’ll share a screen, then one of our dedicated designers will guide you through our bespoke ring portfolio. They can either build upon an existing design or create something unique right in front of you as you talk. This means that you can truly shape your own ring, not just make suggestions and hope for the best. Using specialist CAD software, every nuance you request can be worked into the design. As long as it doesn’t defy physics, we’ll find a way to do it.
Once you’re happy with your design, we’ll go away and create a selection of photo-realistic renders, so that you can see exactly what your finished ring will look like. If you’re happy to proceed, you then just need to place your order. Given the nature of the work, we do request a 50% deposit before we begin – this is largely to cover the materials for your ring.
Then, we’ll get to work.
3. Ring creation
At Durham Rose, we don’t just stockpile materials and use what we’ve got to hand. We source every single gem used to create our rings for each individual project. That way, we can be sure that we’re delivering exactly what our clients are looking for. So, that’s one of the first steps of ring creation. Once we’ve got what we need, we use your CAD designs to create a wax model of your ring, cast your basic band, then hand finish it. That means filing, polishing, stone setting, hallmarking, engraving, the lot.
Every piece of jewellery we work on is photographed at every step of the creation process. Partly so that we can provide you with a beautiful creation booklet to show your intended what went into the making of their custom engagement ring. And partly so that, should the worst happen, and the ring is lost or damaged further down the line, we can help you to recreate it.
Once your ring is finished, it will go through quality control. When we’re happy that it meets your brief and our standards, we’ll place it in one of our lovely ring boxes, carefully tie it up with a ribbon and prepare it for dispatch with its dedicated photo book. You’re very welcome to collect the ring from us in person. Or, we can securely post it out to you with plain packaging to ensure that we don’t give the game away before you do.
Durham Rose is a small, family-run business. We provide a personal service because we don’t know how to do anything else. How can you design an engagement ring for someone without being caught up in their story? Without wanting to make one of the most memorable moments of their life breath-taking, astonishing, fantastic? We do business online, we sell custom engagement rings online, because it makes life easier for our customers. It’s just an extension of our services. And the only difference between ordering and in our studios is that you’re spared the effort and expense of travelling.