Historically, the height of wedding season falls between May and October. Warmer months bring with it longer days and beautiful weather. When it comes to your summer wedding reception, there are no limits to what you can or cannot do. Your love is meant to be celebrated how you two want. If you dream of having a furry four-legged ring bearer and food trucks, go for it. From Elvis officiating your ceremony to a Harry Potter-themed reception, the possibilities are endless!
If you find yourself rocking the engagement ring of your dreams, but have no idea how to start planning your reception, read on. We’ve gathered some of our hottest tips and ideas for your summer wedding to help get your creative juices flowing.
A Romantic Setting
With warmer weather, outdoor venues allow couples to exchange their vows in a naturally romantic setting. Planning an outdoor wedding can add a unique landscape, but also comes with its own challenges.
Here are a few things to consider for an outdoor wedding:
- Use the surroundings to your advantage. Design your altar, seating arrangements, and decor to enhance and compliment the beautiful backdrop.
- Sunlight will naturally illuminate your reception until sunset. Try to add some unique lighting arrangements, like hanging paper lanterns and fairy lights to keep the party going well into the night.
- Make sure to have backup plans. Some of the most common plans should include backup plans for rain, wind, or unexpected guests.
Treats for the Summer Palette
Planning the menu for your reception can also be challenging if you’re hosting it outdoors. Here are some tips and ideas:
- A traditional multi-course menu will always have its place at weddings. Today, some couples are deciding to forgo the sit-down dinner altogether and opting for buffet or cocktail style choices instead.
- While having a beautiful 5 tier cake may be picturesque, melting buttercream frosting won’t be. Instead, consider fondant as it can withstand heat better.
- Having a bar for blended drinks or milkshakes is a unique idea for any event and one you and your guests would really enjoy on a hot day.
An Evening To Remember
A wedding reception is the act of the newly wedded couple receiving the love of their friends and family, as well as their embrace for their guests. Here at Alberta Diamond Exchange, we love to hear stories about unique reception ideas. Send us your stories and photos of your wedding reception and decor!
Marriage often begins with a proposal, and is usually accompanied by a diamond ring that represents the promise to spend the rest of each other’s lives together. Sometimes the proposal involves complex planning, such as fireworks or hiding the ring inside dessert. While everyone has a different experience, proposals are rooted in history and tradition.
A Symbol of Eternity
There are many possible origins of the engagement ring.
Ancient Egyptians often wore lots of jewellery, and each piece signified a specific meaning. They believed that the circle was a symbol of eternity, and would exchange rings with each other as a sign of love and loyalty.
In Greece, they would often gift rings with an image of Eros on it to their lovers. Eros was a cupid-like god, who created feelings of love among people, and represented procreation.
Ancient Roman men would gift their brides with rings made of iron to symbolize a lasting and strong relationship. Eventually, the Romans began to carve important symbols, or even the faces of the couple in the rings.
The first recorded diamond engagement ring was used in 1477. Archduke Maximilian of Austria proposed to Mary of Burgundy with a ring that had diamonds in the shape of an “M.” This gesture opened the door for European Aristocrats to add more embellishments to their betrothal rings as well.
After the discovery of the first diamond mine, and the famous marketing by DeBeers that a “diamond is forever,” diamond engagement rings are now a staple for modern couples.
Ring Trends Through the Ages
The once simple engagement ring became more intricate with the advancement of goldsmith techniques in the 15th century.
Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, multiple bands with diamonds began to be used to make the engagement ring more prominent.
Today, people are creating their own trends. Some women are even choosing to use gemstones instead of diamonds. The kind of metal used also varies. Where yellow gold was the standard in ancient times, the use of platinum or various colours of gold are the most common choices today.
Why Is There A Specific Ring Finger?
Why not the index finger or the left hand? You may not have given it a second thought, but there is a story behind why the engagement ring and wedding bands are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand.
Historically, rings have been worn on every finger on both hands. However, it was the Ancient Egyptians who believed there was a vein in the fourth finger of the left hand that ran directly to the heart. By placing your wedding ring on this vein, you were able to create that emotional connection to the ring. It was also a clear sign that you belonged to someone.
Here at Alberta Diamond Exchange, we can help you find the perfect ring to fit your style and personality. From diamonds to coloured stones, vintage, classic, or modern styles, your ring will capture more than just that moment of initial love. It will showcase your love for eternity.
When it comes to proposing to the person we love, we want to get everything right, especially the ring! The ring, aside from the marriage itself, of course, is the most permanent part of the proposal, so there is—understandably—a lot of pressure in getting the right ring.
At Alberta Diamond Exchange, we pride ourselves on beautiful engagement rings. We know you can find or design the perfect ring for your special someone at our store.
Check out these trends for some awesome engagement ring inspiration.
Trend #1: Colored Stones
Colored stones have risen in popularity over the last couple of years. From designing rings with different colored diamonds to using nontraditional ones as engagement rings, you have options. Sapphire is a great choice for an engagement ring, as they are the closest to thing to diamonds in hardness, and come in every colour! Some of the most popular colours currently are light peach pinks, light blues, and blue-greens.
Trend #2: Navette Rings
The term “navette” in navette rings actually stands for “little ship,” which is probably something you wouldn’t think about when shopping around for the perfect engagement ring. However, it just refers to the design of the ring, which resembles a small ship. Navette rings were popular in the Victorian era but have risen in popularity at other points throughout time. If your special someone wants something alternative, vintage-looking (even when it’s brand new), or something that looks like it’s straight out of the Victorian era, plain and simple, these are the rings to choose.
Trend #3: Vintage Art Deco Rings
Vintage will never go out of style, no matter what the term “vintage” is referring to, and the same goes for vintage art deco rings. Now, this style of engagement ring has risen in popularity immensely over the past couple of years. Each ring produced in this style is unique and honestly, to die for. While you may be able to custom design one mimicking the style, your best bet is to shop vintage!
Contact Alberta Diamond Exchange Today!
Whether you’re looking for a vintage ring or to custom design the perfect one, we can help. Contact us today to learn more.
When it comes to planning the perfect proposal, timing matters and what better time to propose to the man or woman you love than spring? The flowers are finally blooming, the weather is warming up, color is returning to the land. It truly is a magical time, making it ideal for the big proposal, an engagement photo shoot or two, and even your engagement party (if you plan on having one (though why wouldn’t you?).
These amazing ideas show why spring is perfect for your proposal and beyond!
#1: The Proposal
With the right person, you know that no matter what, they’ll be saying yes, but still, a well-thought-out proposal is something they’ll remember and cherish forever. What’s great about proposing in the springtime is that you have more outdoor options for the proposal. From finding a nice garden to visit or visiting your favorite park to taking a boat ride on the river, your options are endless.
#2: The Engagement Photos
What better backdrop is there than green grass, bright flowers, and a clear blue sky? Spring gives you a natural (and free!) setting for all of your engagement photos. Frolic through the flowers, take a walk through the forest, or stand by the water; either way, there’s an endless possibility for what you can do for your engagement photos.
#3: The Engagement Party
Spring is the perfect time for an engagement party. It’s getting warmer, but not too hot, so you can have your party indoors and out. You have more flexibility, so whether you’re looking to grill up some food or have tea inside, you can.
#4: The Ring
One of the most important pieces of the puzzle, the ring should be something your significant other will cherish forever. While this doesn’t mean you have to spend millions of dollars on a ring, it does mean picking one you believe they’ll truly deeply love. One great way to achieve this is by custom designing the ring. Whether your partner wants something traditional yet uniquely their own or something to go with their favorite season, custom engagement rings are the way to go. You’ll have options when it comes to the center stone used (such as choosing one of a different color) and the band itself. You can create something truly gorgeous that will go with your spring proposal and still look good throughout the rest of the year (and your lives together).
If you’re looking for the perfect ring for your partner, look no further than Alberta Diamond Exchange. We look forward to helping you take the next step in this journey!
How well do you know diamonds?
Sure, you may be familiar with the 4c’s. You even may be very familiar with the 4c’s. Unfortunately, that is exactly what the industry wants you to be, familiar. These four important factors are just that, important factors. While they are important, they are also a dramatic oversimplification. The 4c’s barely scratch the surface on all there is to know about a diamond. In fact, they are often used to sell unsuspecting clients a diamond that looks great on paper, at a premium price, for a sub-par diamond. Most clients believe that a diamond that has identical carat, cut, colour and clarity will all look the same, but this is not the case.
You may think to yourself: “This doesn’t apply to me! I am buying an excellent cut diamond!” Unfortunately, it does, and not all excellent cuts are the same. Did you know there can be a 20-30% price difference between various excellent cut diamonds? This is based on how each one handles light. Do you know the tricks used by cutters to maintain carat weight? How about depth and table percentages? Crown and pavilion angles? What about the effect fluorescence has on a diamond? How thick should the girdle of the diamond be? Sure, these are all things you can google, but even these factors are only part of the picture. A diamond is the sum of all of its parts, and knowing how these parts work together is extremely important. We often see clients being overconfident in their research, and paying more for factors they don’t completely understand.
Another point we often hear is: “Make sure you see the diamond in person, or at least a high-resolution image of it before purchasing.” You can definitely do that whether you’re purchasing online, or in-store. But, do you even know what you are looking for when you see the diamond? To the untrained eye, most diamonds will appear sparkly, especially when the online retailer is manipulating the camera to do so. Typically with diamond images, most clients are just looking at the inclusions. There is much more to a diamond than it’s inclusions. All of this seems very negative, but at the end of the day you want someone who really knows diamonds to be in your corner. Having someone who knows the ins and outs of, not only diamonds, but the industry itself. A trusted jeweller can provide expert advice, and in turn, save you time and money.
Online retailers do not own their inventory.
Do you think that Blue Nile and James Allen would have their prices that low if they owned their diamonds? Not a chance. All online retailers are pulling from the same pool of diamonds; brick and mortar stores included. The difference? The diamonds you are seeing online for lower prices are the diamonds that jewelers pass over. That’s right, it’s not some big secret, most of the cheaper diamonds you see are “discount” stones. Weird proportions, unfavourable inclusions, fluorescence, and even the location the diamond is coming from, all factor into how these diamonds are priced. Too good to be true definitely applies here.
At a brick and mortar store, you are going to pay more. Are you going to pay thousands more for the same diamond? No. A little bit more? Yes. Keep in mind that we are always as competitive as we can be, otherwise we wouldn’t be in business. We understand that the market is changing, and we need to keep current and competitive. Small businesses have some overhead: Rent, lighting, insurance and of course the expertise of a diamond expert. Think of your diamond consultant as your “Diamond Realtor”. Imagine you are moving to a new city, and are trying to find the perfect home in a good neighbourhood. Without knowledge of the market or the the city, you wouldn’t know where to start. You would most likely trust the advice of your realtor to find you that perfect home in the safest neighbourhood. This is what we do when assisting you with a diamond. We fit all of the pieces of the puzzle to find the best possible ring for you, whatever your specifications might be.
What can my local jeweler offer me that online can’t?
This is my favourite point. I love online shopping. I do it all the time. Who doesn’t love ordering random things on Amazon? I also have the expectation that what’s pictured isn’t always exactly what I’ll receive. Have you ever tried to return a product to an online retailer? Maybe that sweater you bought didn’t fit, so you need to pack it in a box and return it. No big deal. Now imagine instead of a sweater, the thing you are returning is a small, sparkling rock that you just spent a substantial chunk of money on. Are you just going to put it in a box and hand it to the kid at the FedEx counter? What happens then?
Okay, maybe your diamond arrives and you love it. Awesome. Who is going to set it for you? Did you know that no jeweller is going to cover any damage that occurs to a diamond that isn’t from them during the setting process? Although this doesn’t happen often, it does happen. You also need to be prepared to not have any warranty or aftercare provided to you. Yes, all of the online retailers offer it, if you are prepared to send your ring away for 8-10 weeks.
Another thing to keep in mind: having your claws checked. Modern rings need maintenance. Most women these days want a thin, dainty band, with thinner, daintier claws holding the diamond in place. (Sound familiar?) These types of rings need to be checked at a minimum every 6 months. This ensures that your savings do not literally fall out of the setting. Rhodium plating, size adjustments, and general maintenance are a reality of owning fine jewelry. Having a trusting relationship with your jeweler is important, since your engagement ring is the beginning of many more jewelry purchases you will make. Once again, we go back to having someone in your corner.
- Purchase from someone you like and trust. Having a relationship with your jeweler can be the key to a great experience. Not only for the purchase, but for the future as well.
- Don’t purchase just because it is a good deal. Make sure that it is the right diamond for you. It needs to tick all the boxes, not just the price box.
- Educate yourself! We offer one-on-one diamond and design consultations, and take pride in giving clients every detail we can, so that you feel confident in your decision.
- Know the Top 10 Mistakes When Purchasing a Diamond.
- Have fun! Buying your loved one something special that will be treasured forever should be enjoyable, not stressful.
The clock is ticking as Christmas Day draws closer and closer. Though we’d like to think we’re not the last minute shopper kind, when it comes to finding something for our significant other, it can be quite challenging. We all want that one gift that will make his or her eyes light up from the very moment they open it. There’s nothing quite as perfect as than the sparkle in their eyes and the backdrop of a Christmas tree. But before we can get to that moment, we must find that one item! Here at Alberta Diamond Exchange, we’re all about helping you create a magical Christmas moment.
For Her: Earrings She’ll Show Off All Throughout the New Year
It was in ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ where we learned “You can always tell what kind of a person a man really thinks you are by the earrings he gives you,” as uttered by the iconic Holly Golightly played by Audrey Hepburn. While you may not abide by this notion, gifting your lady a pair of diamond earrings will certainly tell her you care.
Diamond earrings are ideal for the fashionista who loves to accessorize just as much as they are the minimalist beauty who adores accentuating with one piece of jewelry. We recommend a pair of round bezel diamonds studs. These round stunners are ideal for daywear just as much as they an evening dinner. Another perfect contender is the 1.00ctw Inside Out Diamond Hoop Earrings given their equally beautiful, equally versatile look. If your loved one already wears hoop earrings, then this pair is guaranteed to win her over. For those who know their lovely lady adores yellow gold and whose style is more aligned with vintage and classic pieces, the Buttercup Diamond Studs are a true winner! If you can picture her in this charming pair, then come see us today and we’ll help box them up in the prettiest bow.
For Him: A Watch He’ll Use and Treasure For Years to Come
In the same essence as Golightly’s motto, it was fashion designer Giorgio Armani who said, “A watch is one of the most important things that you buy, it says a lot about a person.” If your boyfriend or husband is fond of watches, consider gifting him one he’ll treasure for decades. No matter his profession or favorite pastime, a watch that captures your beau’s essence is one he will wear will satisfaction during any occasion.
Our top three choices include the following: the Rolex Submariner, the Panerai Radiomir 1940, and the Omega Seamaster. Since we are always updating our inventory of men’s watches, we recommend viewing our inventory in person. We’ll be able to help you settle on a watch that is true to his character and once you’ve found it, you might find something to treat yourself.
Find Your Perfect Christmas Gifts Today
Christmas is the time of year to surprise your loved ones with something extra nice. A piece of jewelry is something she’ll remember for a lifetime and a watch is something he’ll treasure perpetually. Your last minute shopping habits don’t have to be compromised! Visit us today and we’ll help you find the perfect gift for him and her.
Diamond jewelry has always been popular, but the way in which we wear them has evolved over time as the decades have passed. These are some of the hottest diamond jewelry and earring trends we’re seeing cropping up today that not only look great but also show no signs of stopping anytime soon.
Trend #1: Dainty Jewelry
As opposed to, say, the ‘60s and ‘70s, dainty is now being favored more than gaudy. While gaudy jewelry is still stylish, many are opting for daintier diamond jewelry. From soft necklaces that lay at the base of your neck to small studs for your ears, dainty jewelry is not going away anytime soon.
Trend #2: Multiple Piercings
When it comes to diamond earrings, more is truly the merrier. A huge trend among young adults is to obtain numerous piercings and then adorn their ears with different kinds of earrings. This is also where the dainty trends come in. Because many people have numerous piercings, they often opt to wear smaller, daintier diamond earrings to make room for more earrings. This trend not only looks great but you can also get really creative with the way you pair your diamond earrings with other pieces of jewelry.
Trend #3: The Return of the Tennis Bracelet
Tennis bracelets had seemed to be dying out for a while but have made a complete resurgence in recent years—including for men! Diamond tennis bracelets are beautiful and make for the perfect addition to your collection of diamond jewelry.
Trend #4: Colored Diamonds
We’ve all heard of giving chocolate to our significant other for Valentine’s Day, but have you heard of chocolate diamonds? They’re gorgeous and last a lot longer than the average piece of chocolate. Colored diamonds, including the infamous chocolate diamond, have made a comeback. If you’re looking for something to gift to your sweetie or are looking to propose, consider a colored diamond for a unique twist on a classic look!
Diamond Jewelry at Alberta Diamond Exchange
All in all, no matter the trends or the kind of jewelry you are interested in wearing, we can help you find the best diamond jewelry you are looking for at Alberta Diamond Exchange. From custom-made engagement rings to estate jewelry and trade-ins, we carry a wide selection of diamond jewelry in our inventory. Call us today to schedule an appointment or stop by to check out our showroom!
Summer 2018 was definitely the summer of loooove. Numerous celebrities, from Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas to Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson, got engaged this summer, and while we’re totally happy for them, we can’t help but be jealous of the massive, intricately designed rings celebrities often have. Luckily, with our custom design services at Alberta Diamond Exchange, you can create the perfect ring based on celebrity-inspired designs. Here are four of the most recent celebrity engagement rings to get you started.
1. Priyanka Chopra
Who would have ever thought the leading star of Quantico would end up with one of the Jonas Brothers? This just goes to show that it’s 2018 and anything can happen. After confirming their engagement by throwing an official engagement party with Priyanka’s family, Priyanka shared photos on Instagram with her ring purposefully visible—a beautiful silver band with a large, rectangular diamond to top it all off. If, like Priyanka Chopra, big, shiny, and bold are what you are going for, we can guarantee we can create something like that for you!
2. Ariana Grande & Pete Davidson
What’s sweeter than young, true love? If you ask Ariana Grande, she’ll probably say that nothing is! Much like Priyanka, Ariana went for big and bold with her ring; silver band encrusted with beautiful diamonds and a large teardrop-shaped diamond in the middle. It’s flashy in the best way possible.
3. Gina Rodriguez
Everyone’s favorite actress, Gina Rodriguez, also got engaged this summer to long-time boyfriend Joe LoCicero, who she worked with on the set of Jane the Virgin. Gina showed off her beautiful ring in early August, confirming that the engagement ring trend of the summer is BIG diamonds that can be spotted from miles away. If big is what you’re going for, we’ve got you covered.
4. Hannah Hart and Ella Mielniczenko
One of the sweetest proposals of the summer, YouTube star Hannah Hart proposed to her girlfriend Ella Mielniczenko, an executive producer for Buzzfeed, on July 27th in Hawaii—and the ring is absolutely gorgeous. While it strays away from the hottest summer trends—gold band with a round center diamond and two smaller stones on either side of it—it’s perfect for those looking for something smaller and daintier.
Contact Alberta Diamond Exchange Today!
If these celebrity engagement rings are inspiring you to custom design one, we’ve got you covered. Give us a call today to learn more!