Monday, July 22, 2024

What Is a Divorce Ring? A Jewelry Expert Explains the Trend

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I may be in a happy, healthy relationship, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t love the concept of a divorce ring. Yes, I know they’re the products of a bad breakup, and no, I don’t ever want to get a divorce, but there is something chic about a divorce ring and the subtle “fuck you, ex” of it all.

Take, for example, Emily Ratajkowski, who filed for divorce from Sebastian Bear-McClard in 2022. On March 19, the 33-year-old model and podcast host debuted her gorgeous divorce rings on Instagram, crediting New York City jeweler Alison Lou, the same brand that created her engagement ring.

Though you may hear the word “divorce ring” and assume it’s a brand-new piece of jewelry, jewelry expert Barkev Meserlian tells PS a divorce ring is actually a reconstruction of the original engagement or wedding ring. In Ratajkowski’s case, her two new divorce rings were repurposed from her original two-stone engagement ring.

“There has been a recent increase in clients seeking to reconstruct their wedding rings into what are now known as divorce rings,” Meserlian says. “People are seeking ways to symbolically move on from their relationships while retaining the sentimental value of their original jewelry.”

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Barkev Meserlian is a jewelry expert and founder and CEO of Barkev’s jewelry store.

In one example posted on TikTok, jewelry brand Fewer Finer shared how they reset the diamond from an old wedding ring into a new “evil eye looking signet style.” They also engraved the word “badass” inside.

Engagement ring designer Zache Emigh also shared his experience repurposing rings for divorcees on TikTok. “The idea of wearing diamonds from a previous marriage might make some people uncomfortable, but I think it’s a beautiful way to repurpose something beautiful and symbolize a fresh start,” he says in the video.

According to Meserlian, repurposing an old wedding ring can be done many different ways. “Techniques can range from simple changes, such as resizing or reshaping, to more complex ones, such as melting down metal to create a new design,” he says.

“I’m not starting over, I’m starting from experience.”

Some people may choose to engrave messages and symbols into the divorce ring, while others may want to incorporate new gemstones. “Introducing new stones, especially those associated with healing properties (like amethyst or rose quartz), can signify the start of a healing journey,” Meserlian says.

Whatever you decide, repurposing your engagement or wedding ring is a good idea if you’re not sure what to do with it, Meserlian says. He also notes it’s an environmentally and financially conscious decision, since it repurposes existing materials. Meserlian adds, “It’s a way of reclaiming one’s identity and moving forward with a tangible symbol of resilience and self-love.”

That said, there are other options: Jennifer, 27, didn’t make another ring, but she did reset the diamond into a pendant she wears on her necklace. “I decided instead of keeping it in a box, I’d wear it and remember that I’m not starting over, I’m starting from experience,” she tells PS.

Jill, 32, on the other hand, bought an entirely new ring. “It was so empowering, and I don’t regret it one bit. Get the ring and do it however it helps heal or empower you on the new path,” she adds.

Of course, there are many ways you can process a divorce. But converting your wedding ring into a divorce ring sounds like the most badass way to signal a fresh start. Meserlian says, “It transforms an item that may trigger painful memories into a symbol of strength, resilience, and hope for the future.”

Taylor Andrews is a Balance editor at PS who specializes in topics relating to sex, relationships, dating, sexual health, mental health, and more.

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