Too Much of a Good Thing?February 19, 15
Valentine’s Day has come and gone and with it, the slew of lovey-dovey pink hearts and candy stories that appeared in the media. One item that showed up in The Detroit News, the pithily titled “Re-used engagement diamonds ring up trouble,” seemed to be more fitting for April Fool’s Day than for the most romantic day of the year.
The piece highlighted an apparently growing trend of previously married women who give the engagement ring they received from their first husband to their second fiancé, who then has it reset and presents it right back to the woman as a token of love and commitment.
If you think this is a tacky move on the future-groom’s part or likely to bring the bad marriage juju from the first marriage into the first marriage, then we are agreement, but this apparently is a “thing” that jewelers are seeing (at least those located in the Detroit area).
Let’s be clear, I am a fan both of vintage jewelry and of not letting things go to waste, but there is something a little kooky about this. Are these women really thinking it through? After all, who wants to be reminded of their former husband every single time they look down at their left ring finger?
Do these rings have such sentimental value that they are worth more in good memories than in bad? Of course, that is something each person has to answer for themselves, but what is motivating groom number two? If you accept that an engagement ring is a must have when it comes to getting married, and most people do, then why would someone want to reuse a ring given by their future wife’s ex-husband?
Perhaps it is just a matter of money. After all, engagement ring buying can be an expensive business. According to wedding website The Knot, the average diamond engagement ring cost $5,598 in 2013. Resetting an already owned piece of jewelry – be it from a former husband, mother or grandmother – is definitely going to be a whole lot cheaper than that – and fortunately can still give jewelers the chance to sell diamonds in the form of side stones or a matching diamond-set wedding band.
What is missing from the story is what the trade knows to be true – that when women remarry, they tend to get larger and more expensive engagement rings than their first time down the aisle. After all, second marriages generally happen between people who are older and probably more financially stable with more disposable income to spend on luxuries such as jewelry.
So, what’s the takeaway from this story? Jewelers (and diamantaires) don’t worry; this is probably nothing more than a good and timely story rather than anywhere close to approaching a shift in engagement ring buying. Fortunately, most women who remarry want a fresh start – and that includes the ring, be it bigger or smaller than the first time around.
Have a great weekend.