Sponsored by: Ben Bridge Jeweler
By: Audrey Williams
For me, thinking about weddings and the perfect engagement ring is right up there with dreaming of becoming a millionaire or planning to go skydiving. None of these things are entirely impossible, but I just haven’t spent my life hoping for them. I tend to stay grounded in my day-to-day realities. However, when I got the chance to design my dream engagement ring — literally, any design my heart desired — I couldn’t help but get excited. Nevermind that I was nowhere near being engaged.
With Bella Ponte by Ben Bridge’s fully customizable engagement rings, I could give myself permission to dream a little; to get caught up in the sparkle and shine of platinum settings, cushion-cut stones, and any other glittering thing I could think up.
If you’re someone who’s spent years envisioning your perfect engagement ring, or even have a family ring you want updated, you’re already a few steps ahead when it comes to making a custom ring. As someone who fell into neither category, I started from scratch with a very rough sketch.
Working with the expert consultants at Ben Bridge, I was able to take that drawing, perfect it, and craft a ring based on one-on-one conversations, starting with the only details I was sure of: I wanted an oval stone and a yellow gold, solitaire setting. From there, I learned more about the four key qualities of a diamond ring: color, cut, clarity, and carat.
With an oval ring set in gold, I learned that the color of my stone didn’t need to have "perfect" color quality — the yellow gold would offset any warmth in the stone. Next came cut. For someone who hadn’t dreamt of the perfect engagement ring, I somehow knew an oval stone was what I wanted. To me, it feels both unique and timeless.
Clarity was probably the thing I knew the least about, but made the biggest difference when it came to deciding how imperfections play a part in stone choice. Understanding that diamonds, as a natural stone, could have some imperfections depending on price point and preference was very helpful. Since I knew that the cut and size of the oval was more important to me than clarity (most imperfections can't even be seen by the naked eye), I opted for a bigger stone over a more "perfect" one.
Lastly, carat came into play. The weight of the ring, measured in carats, was determined by the previous three “Cs,” and by the time we discussed it, I was so eager to see what the ring would finally look like.
With all of these things in mind, I ended up with a six-prong ring, featuring a sleek oval stone and yellow gold French Pavé setting. Its purple velvet box even came with a glassybaby votive and a special “My Story” card which, when scanned, told the story of the journey my unique ring took to get to me with photos showing every step of the process — from wax molds to the hand setting of stones.
I’m still nowhere near becoming engaged, but having the freedom to create something as fantastical and personal as “the perfect ring” was a welcome adventure. And until I'm wearing a ring that symbolizes a relationship, this one will serve as a precious reminder that it’s totally fine to dream beyond the confines of my daily reality — and embrace some serious sparkle.
Photos: Stephanie Price; Art Direction: Julie Vaccaro/ BDG; Production: Sam Ulban/ BDG.