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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

I love redesigning old jewelry, especially engagement rings. A lot of my female customers didn’t have any input into their original rings. Others — like me — felt pressured to go with a style that was more traditional than what they truly wanted. Redesigning the old rings gives those wimmins a chance to express their […]

Continue reading about Mom’s Engagement Ring Redesign: Before Photo




Monday, January 19, 2015

Most of the wedding jewelry I create is made to order, with the customer and I working on a one-of-a-kind design together. Here are a few examples: Lori’s white-sapphire engagement ring. Olivia’s surprise ring. Mindy’s redesigned engagement ring. Two more redesigned rings. But I do try to add new designs to the options I have […]

Continue reading about Jewel of the Month: Customizable Gold Engagement Ring




Thursday, March 6, 2014

I’ve mentioned before on this blog that I redesigned my own engagement ring years after my 2001 wedding, but I’ve never found a good picture of the original to share. Turns out I wasn’t looking in the right place, because here’s a close-up of my first setting. As you can see, there’s nothing extraordinary about […]

Continue reading about Throwback Thursday: My Original Engagement Ring




Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Kanye West popped the question to Kim Kardashian with a 15-carat diamond ring by Lorraine Schwartz. I appreciate his timing, because yesterday I launched another Instagram account — @WendyBrandesJewelry — which focuses solely on my jewelry designs and other jewelry news. No cats and dogs (you need to follow @fitzroy_the_cat for those) and no concert […]

Continue reading about My Take on Kim and Kanye’s Engagement Ring




Thursday, August 15, 2013

There’s a story in today’s New York Times Thursday Styles section about “bespoke jewelry.” “Bespoke” is a fancy word for custom jewelry, the term that I prefer. I was especially interested in this paragraph. “So-called bespoke pieces (the term started in men’s wear but has spread, like ‘curate,’ to everything from bicycles to software) are […]

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I don’t know how I missed the original announcement of the auction of the diamond-and-sapphire engagement ring Napoleon gave to Josephine, but I’m quite disappointed. I would have loved to own this piece of history! It was sold by the Osenat auction house in France, and I have to admit that the final, anonymous bid […]

Continue reading about But I Wanted This! Napoleon and Josephine’s Engagement Ring




Thursday, December 20, 2012

My Jewel of the Month for July was Lori Kadezabek‘s unusual custom engagement ring. Lori and her fella, Brian “Roley” Riolo, got married on November 10. This week, Lori emailed me a photo from her wedding with the note “I uploaded a pic to Facebook and I am getting shout-outs on how amazing my ring […]

Continue reading about Lori Gets Married




Thursday, November 8, 2012

My favorite metal is 18K yellow gold — I think it works best with my history-inspired designs — but I use platinum, 18K white gold and silver in my jewelry as well. My “Gravity” wedding/engagement designs, for instance, all got their start in platinum. The Gravity name came from the unusual heft of the first […]

Continue reading about Gravity’s Manicure and Thoughts on Engagement Rings




Thursday, October 11, 2012

It seems some online commenters have worked themselves into a tizzy over the big diamond in actress Jennifer Aniston’s engagement ring. As a designer who has done some offbeat engagement rings, I think all that matters is that the wearer is happy. As for my personal taste, you can learn about that in my interview […]

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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

I design all kinds of engagement rings for my customers. I’m happy to do a traditional solitaire, but I’ve also done mixed-metal stacking rings …. … and a white-sapphire ring that looks very different from a conventional engagement ring. Basically, I would do nearly anything so that you have a ring you love. But I […]

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Continue reading about I Would Do Anything for Love, But I Won’t Do That