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New metals provide more options for men’s rings BY JEAN HANSEN Advertorial Wrter

Once upon a time, a man’s wedding band was a simple band of yellow gold....and that was pretty much the extent of the options. Maybe a diamond was added, or maybe a variation in the finish, but alternative metals and materials were unavailable. A bride today has many more options of materials when it comes to selecting a ring for her groom. In addition to the standards of gold and platinum, rings are now available in different alloys, such as tungsten carbide, titanium, palladium and cobalt chrome. These new metals have their pros and cons, said Rusty Clark, jeweler, gemologist,and owner of Thorpe & Co. Jewellers at the corner of Fourth & Pierce streets in Sioux City. “Tungsten carbide is very much scratch resistant, which is a plus. The drawbacks are: No. 1, it cannot be sized, and No. 2, it can crack. The steel is so condensed it becomes brittle. It can break if you drop it or hit it just right. With gold you don’t have that problem,” Clark said. Titanium, another inexpensive alternative, is not scratch resistant. An advantage is comfort as “it’s very, very light. You don’t know you have it on,” said Clark, but he also cautioned, “It cannot be sized. You have to send it in to be replaced altogether, just as you do with tungsten carbide,” he said. “Palladium is a relatively new metal to be considered,” he said. “It’s a pure white metal like Platinum, which is dense and heavy, but palladium is a fraction of the cost. Gold, of course, can also be white. Gold is yellow in its pure form and alloyed to be white. Palladium is priced about the same as gold,” said Clark. Cobalt chrome is another white metal that is lustrous and hypoallergenic, with nice heft that can stand up to wear and tear. It’s also very versatile. Thorpe’s is adding dozens of styles with everything from meteorite inserts to camouflage patterns. But again Clark cautions, “These, too, cannot be sized and there are some costs to replace them, even if it’s only postage there and back.” Karen Clark of Thorpe & Company Jewellers said that a bride and groom should consider the point that when a ring has to be replaced, the sentimental attachment to that original ring is gone with it. It becomes a functional decision, not a sentimental decision. 4

May 2014

MODERN BRIDES

Photos courtesy Thorpe & Co. Jewellers

Alternative metal options for groom’s rings can be found at Thorpe & Co. Jewellers.

“After all, a wedding is about sentimentality,” she said. That is why the Clarks recommend that couples stick with the traditional metals, such as platinum and gold. “Gold is the one I prefer that a bride buy. When you choose a precious metal, it shows you spent something on your guy that has intrinsic value. With the price of gold the way it is, I realize it’s more difficult. That’s why we offer alternative metals,” he said. When it comes time for you to choose a ring for that special someone, visit Thorpe & Co. Jewellers in downtown Sioux City or call (712) 258-7501. You’ll see why they were selected one of The Knot’s “Best of Weddings” vendors!

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