Planning Your Wedding

Touch of love

Touch of love

Textured wedding rings

From hammered to sandcast, texture brings a unique and distinctive twist to a forever-worthy ring

Hannah May
Hannah May - Chief Features Writer

As part of the vow exchange, the rings remain not just the pivotal piece of jewellery in weddings, but also one of the most important items you possess: something you’ll both see and touch every day for the rest of your lives together.

Not only does texture add another dimension and element of distinction, but it also allows couples to import greater meaning and to select or co-create bespoke heirlooms that will be treasured for generations to come.

Coastal creations

“Texture really sets your ring apart from the classic polished band, adding interest and character,” says Jamila Hirtenstein from Justin Duance Jewellery. “The texture on our sandcast collection is imparted by the beach sand they are cast in, and we encourage couples to have their ring cast in sand from their favourite beach. Little grains are captured in the gold, so you not only have a very unique looking ring, but also carry a bit of that favourite place with you everywhere you go. Each ring comes out differently, but we can nudge them into being a more subtle sandy texture right up to the more gnarly 'extra texture' - which is perfect for nestling little diamonds in.”

Alternatively, Justin’s stunning rock ring collection draws upon the granite coastline that surrounds his West Cornwall studio and home, and features a contrast between the smooth matte surface and darker rugged recesses. “They can be combined with a hardwood inlay that starts off perfectly smooth and evolves with time, wearing and picking up a patina from your day to day life,” explains Jamila. Or if you’re looking for something more uniform, she suggests a planished ring, whose texture is imposed by a special hammer for a beautifully dappled appearance.

Tideline treasures

Inspiration drawn from the rugged coastline of west Cornwall is evident in each piece of Emily Nixon’s distinct, beautifully crafted jewellery. “Artfully sculpted and combining contradictory materials and textures – Emily’s jewellery is grounded in her proximity to the sea,” says Chloe Wild from Emily Nixon Jewellery. “They are distinctive impressions of nature with an asymmetric, organic beauty.”

Using bespoke tools, often collected from the water’s edge, to embed her signature rock, shell and urchin patterns into her unusual, textured rings, Emily Nixon’s collection is replete with captivating detail. “The tumbled, sea weathered surfaces have a tactile character – perfectly imperfect impressions of the natural landscape,” says Chloe.

Available in gold, rose gold, white gold, platinum and silver, the handcrafted collection comprises skinny bands through to wide statement rings, which are smooth, textured or set with gemstones. Mix your pattern and metals with a sculptural ring stack or customise a ring with a sprinkling of gemstones. You could also commission Emily to craft a bespoke piece or to remodel sentimental jewellery into a stunning textured set of rings, breathing new life into heirloom pieces for tangible tokens of your love.

Tangible love tokens
Based in the artistic haven of St Ives, the surrounding coastline is an endless source of inspiration for Stephanie Stevens. Bespoke commissions are a speciality and she relishes the opportunity to take couples on a making journey of their engagement and wedding rings from start to finish. She uses a range of textures in her distinctive work, from hammered to brush effects. 

“I sometimes use the same texture for a couple’s rings which is a really lovely way to make it personal and matching,” she explains. “I also like to use reticulation – a technique which creates a beautifully textured surface of ripples and ridges.”

She sometimes uses multiple textures on a ring to create a distinctive finish. “The aquamarine ring below has a smooth, shiny finish either side of the stones and the rest is brushed to give the appearance of two different rings in one,” she explains. From special dates and words to coordinates, engraving is another way of creating a feel-me and brilliantly bespoke touch.

A hammered finishPenryn-based jeweller and goldsmith Becca Williams loves to take a collaborative approach to her jewellery commissions, whether it's remodelling an heirloom piece, crafting an engagement ring from transparently sourced gemstones and traceable gold, or making something special to wear on W-day, which carries a personal message. And when it comes to texture, she has a passion for a particular style.
"Hammered textures hold a special place in my heart. There's something enchanting about knowing that each tiny indentation on a piece of jewellery is the result of a human hand wielding a hammer," says Becca. "It adds a personal touch that can't be replicated by machines. The art of hammering, particularly 'planishing,' creates these delightful round marks on metal surfaces, giving each piece a unique character."
When it comes to wedding rings, she asserts, hammered textures add an extra level of durability. "Precious metals may be soft compared to everyday materials, but a hammered finish conceals the inevitable wear and tear that comes with daily wear," she says. "Scratches and marks blend seamlessly into the textured surface, becoming part of the ring's story. Embracing these imperfections not only adds charm but also ensures that your rings age gracefully, standing the test of time."

Second skin rings
Curating an eclectic collection of wedding rings from classic polished bands to personalised pieces, family-run luxury jewellers Michael Spiers present couples with fabulous and uniquely fitting choice. From timeless and traditional to modern designs with idiosyncratic edge, a shopping trip to any of the Truro, Plymouth, Taunton and Exeter showrooms is a special affair indeed.

Peruse the extensive collections or commission a custom creation with a host of textures and finishes ranging from seductively smooth curved bands to rings with deep channels and brilliant cut diamonds. You might fall for the 18ct white gold band with an offset solid 18ct yellow gold insert, or the satin-brushed Bombe profile rub-over ring with diamonds set along a central groove – both of which ooze clean-lined and silken-touch elegance. The Plymouth showroom is also home to the company’s state-of-the-art workshop, where their designers, stone experts and goldsmiths will collaborate to craft a bespoke band with the texture and design elements of your choice.

Riverscape gems
Handcrafting organic shaped jewellery that evokes the Devon landscapes in which she is immersed, designer-maker Erin Cox has curated a special collection of wedding bands featuring eight unique designs inspired by the county's rivers. Available in recycled 9ct yellow, red or white gold, 18ct yellow or white gold, or platinum, each piece from her signature Molten Wedding Ring Collection is made to order.

"Inspired by the undulating landscapes of Devon", each fabulously feel-me band can also be customised with the addition of gemstones such as diamonds, rubies or sapphires; alternative finishes from matte to highly polished; casting with sentimental gold or platinum, or individual shaping to sit alongside your engagement ring.

words Hannah May

Main image Emily Nixon / Photography Tor Harrison

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Becca Williams

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Emily Nixon

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Justin Duance Contemporary Jewellery

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Michael Spiers

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Stephanie Stevens Jewellery

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