Buying a custom/specialized engagement ring in the UK
April 12, 2012 11:50 AM   Subscribe

My girlfriend would like a particular style of engagement ring.

My girlfriend would like an engagement ring made in rose gold (a pinkish gold-copper alloy) with a red stone, preferably ruby or spinel, in a simple traditional style (plain metal, possibly a claw fitting)

I've had trouble finding a nice one ready-made. I've got preliminary quotes from various shops at Hatton Garden to get one made for £900, £1,300 and £1,900 depending on the stone quality. I could just about afford that, but it seems like a huge markup, since the gold can't cost more than about £100-£150, and there are similar but not-so-nice rings on Etsy for much less.

Does anyone have advice on finding such a ring, getting jewellery made in general, or recommendations for a jeweller who is in London or delivers to the UK?
posted by anonymous to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (12 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Get someone on Etsy to make it for you. Junedesigns made me this ring, she works in rose gold, and she does custom designs. I'm wearing that piece as I type to you. I absolutely love it.

Note: this is just a recommendation. There are so many other awesome jewelry makers on that site, but I don't have experience with them.
posted by 200burritos at 11:55 AM on April 12, 2012 [4 favorites]

I should add that I'm sure that your girlfriend wants a larger stone, but that person can probably do it for you.
posted by 200burritos at 11:56 AM on April 12, 2012

Ok, last post. Here is an example with a diamond.
posted by 200burritos at 12:03 PM on April 12, 2012

David Klass is the king of custom work. He completely restored and overhauled my delicate antique engagement ring, and it looks much better than it initially did. He is a perfectionist who provides excellent customer service and very reasonable prices for custom work. He is based in LA. If you add him a photo or description of what your girlfriend wants, he will fix you up. I've seen some of his rose gold work, and it was lovely. I think you might find that his prices are better than some of the well-known Etsy jewelers, too. (I am not affiliated with him, I promise--just a happy customer who will only use him for my jewelry needs from now on.)

Also, if you think your girlfriend would be okay with a lab-created (but real) ruby, you can get high-quality stones in a variety of cuts (and very good prices) from Better Than Diamond.
posted by anonnymoose at 12:09 PM on April 12, 2012 [2 favorites]

McFarland Designs does extensive work in rose gold, has several red stone options available, and is ethical and affordable. And super nice.
posted by elsietheeel at 12:10 PM on April 12, 2012 [2 favorites]

P.S. Memail me for David's contact info or photos of his work on my ring, if interested.
posted by anonnymoose at 12:11 PM on April 12, 2012

I wanted something unique for my wife, and ended up going with what I would call a semi-custom ring. I purchased a stone at an estate jeweler, and they had a catalog of settings to choose from with an immense selection. Unfortunately I don't have any information as to their supplier and this was in the States.
posted by Big_B at 12:12 PM on April 12, 2012

Mastergoldcraft made my engagement ring, after we worked with him on the design. We were/are very happy with the ring and the process.
posted by sulaine at 12:27 PM on April 12, 2012 [1 favorite]

Would she consider vintage? When I was looking at rose gold rings with red stones a while back a lot of what I was finding was vintage /antique pieces from the UK. Good luck.
posted by oneear at 12:28 PM on April 12, 2012

Here is a really nice reddish/pink stone set in rose gold.

Here is another one, that I bet he would make in rose gold.
posted by sulaine at 12:37 PM on April 12, 2012

Can I just mention that if you order a ring from a seller outside the UK when it's mailed to you it'll go through Customs and you'll have to pay duty on it before it'll be released to you.
posted by essexjan at 1:39 PM on April 12, 2012

I have no idea if they'll ship to the UK, but I got my wedding ring at Gemvara. Their deal is customization of designs. You can put any stone they offer into any setting (not just solitaires), and then you can choose the metal as silver, yellow gold, rose gold, or platinum.

My ring isn't like what your fiance says she wants, but as a testimonial, here it is (mine is white gold with diamonds), it's been 1.5 years, and I'm still over the moon about it. And FWIW, I considered getting it in rose gold with rubies or garnets.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 4:54 PM on April 12, 2012 [2 favorites]

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