There are a lot of unwritten rules when it comes to weddings, and which ones to follow and not can be confusing. Whether to have matching wedding bands is no exception as they can show off what type of couple you are striving to be.
In the U.S., it’s still more popular to have a matching set of rings, worn on the ring finger. This is steeped in tradition and dates back many centuries. However, there are no rules or laws regarding this. Moreover, it is becoming more popular to have rings that don’t match or even no rings at all.
While it is your choice to have matching bands or not, it can say a lot about what type of couple you are and how you want to be viewed. Or even if you don’t want rings at all, this speaks volumes of the type of couple you are.
If you do want rings there are endless options to choose from and what suits you best can be accomplished by reading below.
Why do we exchange rings?
There are many reasons for exchanging rings dating back centuries from all over the world, mostly in Europe.
One was that the ring finger had a vein that was connected to the heart, and this showed true love. Another one was to show the exchange of values. It was not always that the couple always truly loved each other, it was more of a business transaction.
As with most traditions, this is not the case now. Rings have many different meanings now, such as to show a bond between a couple and their commitment to each other.
Some get them to show fidelity and purity. Putting on a ring also shows that while following traditions, you are looking at the future together.
For me personally, I would fall into the camp of ‘showing a bond’. I have never worn jewelry before and always thought I couldn’t bear to wear a ring, but for the right person, it’s no burden at all.
What is best for you?
Just like the wedding or honeymoon, couples agree on somethings and don’t on other things.
Most of the time there is a happy medium that can be met. But when it comes to wedding bands, it’s important both of you not only like the band, you love it. You will be wearing it every day and everywhere.
So whether you get matching, non-matching or nothing at all, you will have to live with it so really think about your choice. It’s up to both of you to understand the other’s view whether it’s the same or different.
Reasons for matching bands:
- Rings show the world that you and your spouse have come together and are now one.
- It demonstrates that your beliefs are aligned and you value tradition.
- You and your spouse have the same style and tastes.
Reasons for non-matching bands:
- You want to show off and express each of your different tastes.
- Your skin tones and sizes are different, so matching rings wouldn’t look right.
- One of you doesn’t love the ring and you don’t want to pressure them to get something they don’t love.
One person wants matching bands and the other doesn’t:
- For one spouse the ring may not be sentimental as to the other. So a compromise could be the answer.
- Getting complementary rings rather than matching rings could be a solution to the issue.
- You could get two bands of different styles but identical metals or different metals but the same style. Mix and match with, different stones, colors, and metals.
Reason for no rings:
- It is can be very expensive to get rings and then have them customized. A lot of people would rather spend this money elsewhere.
- You don’t like the tradition and want to mix things up.
- Getting a different piece of jewelry or another matching item to wear as a couple, suits you two better.
How to choose a ring?
Choosing a ring by yourself can be a daunting endeavor, and when two people are involved even harder.
Rings are works of art and no two are alike. The more you understand the components that make up a ring, the easier it will be to choose a quality piece.
Before you go to your jeweler it is good to have a good idea of what you are looking for.
Gold is the most traditional of the metals for bridal jewelry. But you don’t need to buy a gold ring or even a variety of gold like rose or white. Some other options include but are not limited to platinum, palladium, steel, tungsten, silver, ceramic, titanium and zirconium.
Titanium and tungsten are newer materials that have become popular recently. Some people have skin sensitivities and may not be able to have certain metals, so they need to need to choose a hypoallergenic one.
This doesn’t just apply to the metal, but also to the stone and inlays. Thinking about your complexion and skin tone. It can play a big factor in how the ring looks on you and your partner.
For a more subtle look, a matte or satin finish would be best and they also don’t show scratches as easily. A polished finish, on the other hand, is highly reflective and more noticeable. It also shows off scratches easier, but you can get this polished out and a pattern applied again if need be.
Diamonds and Gemstones/ Setting
A diamond as a center stone is still the most popular one to get. Though it is waning in popularity, and people are choosing different gemstones or none at all.
If you don’t want to follow tradition or want something more personal you can choose a gemstone with special meaning. The stone could be the birthstone of your birthday or a month with special meaning.
Another way to be a bit different is to have it set differently. You want to choose your metal first to see what stone will match the best.
This speaks to what kind of person you are and your style. Are you more traditional, contemporary or somewhere in-between? Think about what clothes you wear, the styles you like, the art you enjoy.
Draw ideas, styles, and looks from your daily life and create a ring that is you.
Types of Ring/Motifs
You can look for something with geometric shapes, strong bold lines, diagonals, and asymmetry. These factors will give it an ultra-modern feel with a set center stone.
Browse on Amazon for more inspiration.
Most wedding rings have a lot in common and look similar, so when they are a little different it can catch the eye. A stone that is horizontally set instead of in a traditional vertical setting would look good. Any small amount of asymmetry will do the trick while still looking great.
Get more ideas about the perfect ring by shopping on Amazon.
Take a look at nature and how vines and flowers grow. There are many bands with this look. You can have it be simple and look lines vines wrapping around your finger. For a more intricate look, a flower stem with stones arranged to look like flowers.
You can find more ideas like this on Amazon.
A Metal band
Many couples choose to have simple metal bands. These can be of any materials and are very durable. Some even opt to get engraving etched on the inside with a special message.
This is just one amazing new design I found, there are more on Amazon to get your creative juices flowing.
You may have gotten an engagement ring that you want to incorporate into your wedding ring or this was the plan all along. Having a combination of rings that fit together or that you can mix and match is fun and modern.
You can find more ideas easily by shopping with Amazon.
Usually, they are diamonds that are set around the whole ring and can be very expensive. If you have the diamonds spread out or supplement them with a different stone it can be accessible and fashionable to all.
There really are some great deals to be had on Amazon these days.
Mix them all up, get a natural-looking silver ring that looks like a vine. Have it stack with a subtle looking gold offset diamond. It is your ring have fun with it.
Not everyone wants to have a ring and with so many other options out there today you don’t have to.
For 41 great alternatives to wedding rings, check out my article for inspiration.
A ring on a necklace or just a necklace
You still have the traditional aspect of the ring, but just aren’t wearing it on your finger. These necklaces can be customized just as the ring would be, it could include birth gemstones or engravings. You could also put a locket on it with a picture of your spouse.
Charm bracelet/ anklet
This is similar to a necklace but it more adaptable and customizable. You can add and subtract things to these as time goes on. This could be charms for things like anniversaries or the birth of a child.
A tattoo of a ring
This is perhaps the ultimate symbol of your love and commitment, but physically marking your body and declaring your devotion to the world.
However, this option gets a very bad rap, as people say tattoos are forever. While most tattoos are, one on your finger will wear relatively quickly and need to be touched up every few years. Also with laser removal, it is removed fairly quickly if need be.
Matching/ Set pieces
Having something that when you combine them, it makes one. This could be done with furniture, clothing, pillowcases, artwork, etc.
Show that you are making a future together by planting something such as a tree. You both will have to take care of it and can watch it grow together as you both do as well.
Ultimately, there is no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing your wedding band. If you want them to match, that’s fine, if you want something more individual, that’s great too. At the end of the day, the rings or any alternative you choose will all symbolize the bond you have with your spouse.