Post # 1
So I got engaged on December 21st to a very loving man. He asked using an heirloom from his family’s side and whilst the ring is pretty, it’s not a style I would have picked and I’m terrified of losing/damaging it. (I know it’s unlikely, but my anxiety gets the better of me sometimes).
He and his family are all perfectly happy with me getting a different ring as they knew it might not be my style and his nana has offered to buy it back off us for the valuation price so that we can get something more to my taste. (We would just give it back, but she’s insistent as she sees it as a way to help us out financially).
As a result we’ve had a look around and ended up talking to a goldsmith who has been working on designs for a custom ring.
Essentially I will be going from a 9 diamond cluster which takes up about half my knuckle to a dainty solitaire with twisting gold work.
Despite everyone being fine with me changing the ring, I still feel guilty about turning down a piece of their family history, and feel like I should just be grateful for what I was given. It feels like I’m being selfish and high maintenance for changing it. Has anyone else experienced anything like this? I know it’s something I’m going to have to get over, but it would be nice to hear from anyone else who turned down an heirloom.
Also, for anyone who downsized their ring, did you get many comments about it and, if so, how did you deal with them? Ultimately what I like is what’s important but anxiety is a bitch and it would be nice to have an idea of how to politely tell people to back the hell off before anything does happen.
Sorry if I have rambled, and please be kind. It’s been a bad few days and think I just need to hear from others who have been in similar situations.
Post # 2
Can you keep it and wear it on special occasions? You can get the best of both worlds. I know that is not really what you are asking but it seems like an option.
Post # 3
- Wedding: June 2017 - A vineyard
I dont think its selfish at all to not want to wear an heirloom 24/7 thats not your style. However, I kind of agree with Ukulele. I have lots of jewellery from grandma that isn’t my style at all but I kept it because she did work hard to give it to me and just made sure to wear it around her.
I don’t know if you guys want kids but if you do it would be great to have stuff to pass down to them. Like that ring. And if you don’t want kids, give it to a niece later on who will appreciate it.
And this way you still get to wear a ring you love too (new engagement ring) 🙂 best of both worlds like she said 🙂
Post # 4
Not really an answer to your question either, as I didn’t turn down an heirloom myself. BUT … would it be possible (without offending the family) to use the diamonds from the heirloom cluster ring to make a simple diamond band for your wedding band? Perhaps you can have the jeweler replace the diamonds with other stones (e.g., maybe birthstones for the family members) and gift that ‘renewed’ piece back to Grandma so it’s sentimental to her and connects you both? Just a suggestion.
PS – Congrats on your engagement! 💍😉
Post # 5
So you have a picture of the heirloom ring? I ask because I agree with everyone above perhaps it can be a piece you wear occasionally OR what my initial thought was exactly what TheMotherThing said, perhaps you can alter it into a daily wear? MANY bees on here who are gifted diamonds reset them and have much success from that. That way you don’t have the feeling of turning it down, but at the same time create something more to your liking and still have a piece of history that you can pass down? Either way we would love to see both. But especially your new ring when you get it, it sounds gorgeous. Congrats. But at the end of the day do not have guilt. what would be wrong would be if you took the ring and wore it and hated it and it caused resentment. Or if your were bullied into wearing it or you took it and sold it or something to that effect. I truly think you are doing everything right.
Post # 6
They wouldn’t allow you to reset the stones into a wedding band or something, would they? I had a very large aquamarine from my grandmother sitting in my jewelery box and just sent It to Florida to be recut and reset into something I’ll be happy to wear daily. With the permission of my mother, of course. She actually ended up loving the idea, because it’s the stone that is sentimental.
Post # 7
There’s nothing wrong with wanting your own ring. A lot of responsibility comes with family heirlooms, even in the best of circumstances. My mom’s engagement ring is an heirloom and I’ve never seen her wear it. Not once. It’s a beautiful ring that sits in a box for fear it will get damaged. Obviously, I don’t know the climate of his family, but sometimes people attach strong feelings to heirlooms and the recipient ends up in a no win situation. The ring might be better off with grandma for now. Enjoy the ring that you design!
Post # 8
Thank you for all the responses everyone! I’m so glad to hear that people unattached to the situation don’t think I’m being selfish since you don’t have a reason to spare my feelings.
Unfortunately, keeping the ring to either wear on special occasions or reset the stones isn’t an option. The only reason we can afford to look at getting the custom made ring with the type of gold work I like is because his Nana is willing to buy this back off us. I also wouldn’t be comfortable resetting the stones anyway since the setting is very much part of the history of the ring (I believe it was originally his Nana’s grandmother’s ring).
But, for anyone interested, this is the heirloom ring.
Post # 9
FWIW, I don’t think that asking for a smaller/simpler/less ornate ring is even remotely high maintenance.
Post # 10
I think you are doing the right thing. You need it to mean something to you. Whilst I haven’t been passed an heirloom down to me I understand that they aren’t always everybody’s taste, it’s a wonderful gesture from them and they seem very understanding that you need something for you…you aren’t being selfish don’t worry about that!!
sounds like you are going into a wonderful family 😁 please update us on your ring choice and congratulations!!
Post # 11
You are being so nice and understanding about the situation and so is his family… you are lucky, girl! Don’t spend another second worrying about it.
Just be sure to thank his grandmother for offering the heirloom and enabling you to get your dream ring. She’ll be happy to feel involved.
Post # 12
I did, but it was from my side of the family so a bit different from your situation. I turned down a 2 carat family diamond because 1) the size wasn’t my taste or practical for my career 2) my now husband had always pictured picking out a ring and purchasing it himself 3) I didn’t have a relationship with the former owner so it wasn’t particularly sentimental to me and 4) I knew another relative really really loved it and I didn’t mind them getting it instead of me.
Glad your situation seems to have resolved with everyone happy!
Post # 13
Thank you all again for the kind words.
I am very lucky with the family I’m marrying into, they’re absolutely lovely and have made me feel welcome from the get go. His mum’s philosophy at the beginning was that I love her son so I clearly already had something in common with her.
Post # 14
I turned down an heirloom ring. My husband’s great aunt, who had no children of her own, gifted him a 2 carat marquise ring. He offered it to me and I thought it was too big for my every day taste. I also didn’t like the pointy ends. I got more crap from people outside his family, like friends, than his family. My SIL (husband’s sister) was gifted a diamond band and I knew she loved the marquise solitaire, so with my husband’s blessing, I offered to swap with her. I have a beautiful diamond band RHR and she reset the marquise and wears it as her engagement ring now. It was a win-win for us.
Post # 15
I am not yet engaged but my boyfriend and father really wanted to give me a ring that belonged to my grandmother. I was originally excited to redesign it, however, I could not get over the fact that it was a round diamond. I really want a radiant! Finally, I spoke up and I think I initially hurt my father’s feelings but now he understands that it just wasn’t my dream. I will one day inherit it (again) and use it for a RHR. It just was not the right fit for me. Now the radiant size will be an upgrade not a downgrade but I would do whatever works for you. Family/inlaws will understand!