My extensive collection of jewellery!
When we got married we were both students and very poor! My engagement ring came from one of those discount jewellers with big red and yellow stickers everywhere, was second hand and cost 225 pounds (Aussie keyboard - no pound sign!). The hallmark said 1917, if I remember correctly (it is no longer there as the ring was so worn the band snapped and had to be replaced!), and is of the style where the setting is larger than the stone, none the less, I love it and would never swap it as it reminds me of where we have been and of what is truly important in life (ooh, nearly made myself a wee bit teary there!).
My engagement ring
When it came to getting a wedding ring, we had no money left but I did have a big, chunky signet ring given to me by my Paternal Grandmother some years previously with my initials on it. It had belonged to an aunt of hers from a wealthy Edinburgh family who also shared our initials. Since my parents were at the other end of the country from my chosen university I would sometimes jump on the train to Glasgow and then head to Largs to spend a weekend with my Grandmother. It was on one of these occasions that I asked her if I could have the ring melted down and made into my wedding ring. She was delighted and I was relieved as she could be quite forceful in her opinions!
My wedding ring
When we were little, my brother and I always favoured our maternal Grandmother as she was more your typical, cuddly Granny, but as I got older I learned to respect and love this indomitable lady. I was very fortunate to spend a week with her a few days before she died in 1996. During that week she told me that I was to have her engagement ring but, to cut a long story short, my Dad decided it should go to my Mother so that he could see it and be reminded of his Mother. The day before we left for Australia, 12 years later, I had a substantial amount of money in Tesco vouchers (how I miss them!!) to spend in Goldsmiths. Mother was with me to help me choose but I didn't like the watches, I didn't like the rings and I wouldn't have worn anything else. Mother took me to one side and told me that she had been planning to give me my Grandmother's ring before we left as she thought I needed at least one piece of jewellery that was appropriate for my husband's new position!! Might also have had something to do with my comments over the years about whether or not she was enjoying MY ring...! Happily we had seen a really pretty ring with 7 diamonds in the shape of a flower that we thought would remind her of the 7 of us every time she wore it so my vouchers were well spent and everyone was happy.
Apparently the ring isn't actually my Grandmother's engagement ring but we don't really know what happened to her original. We found her original wedding ring, a tiny gold band, but I will always remember the beautiful scalloped ring that she wore. I now have them both but her fingers must have been tiny as I can't wear either of them any more.
Granny's original wedding ring. You can see the initials for Joseph Thom Carrick - Sarah Colvin
The wedding ring I remember her wearing
Her teeny rings compared to my chunky one!
Hopefully one day my own daughter will appreciate these rings and their history, but currently she refuses point blank to wear any of the beautiful silver bangles I have bought for her, prefering to wear bits of wool that she has finger knitted instead!