Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Wedding bands and diamond rings can be scratched!

Some things are learnt the hard way. Through experience.

Things that jewellers don't tell you is that rings particularly gold (be it rose gold or yellow gold) and silver, they are can be scratched and this becomes evident and visible to the eye in one year after constant wear and tear. So i did a little research. Here's what i found:

Best Bets for Scratch-Resistance

Tungsten:
For sheer durability and scratch resistance, there is no better metal available on the commercial ring market than tungsten. Generally only slightly to moderately more expensive than titanium, tungsten rings maintain their shine and polish for far longer than gold, silver, or even titanium rings. There is very little damage that will be incurred by tungsten rings in daily use; if you don't like taking your ring off when you're working, that's ok-you probably don't have to. However, tungsten is also very unlikely to bend from impact-related damages, and instead can shatter or break. So while most normal activities pose no threat to leaving scratches on your tungsten wedding ring, be careful not to drop it or close it in the car door. When shopping for tungsten, make sure you're getting nickel-alloyed tungsten carbide-not an alloy of cobalt, which weakens the ring.

Titanium:
Super-tough titanium came onto the jewelry market as "a man's ring"; durable, scratch-resistant rings that could be worn by "working guys." Since then, titanium wedding bands have only gained popularity, and more jewelers have refined their practices to create some truly beautiful-but still tough-designs. Titanium is much more resistant to scratches and denting than silver, gold, or platinum, but weighs less than tungsten. If full-fledged durability is a more important consideration than appearance, stay with standard light gray titanium or black titanium rather than some of the oxide-layer, colored options on the market-which can scratch off over time.

Other Options
Platinum:
Platinum is a considerably more durable (but also considerably more expensive) than classic gold or silver rings. Unlike silver and gold, platinum is very resistant to warping with time. Platinum can still be scratched through daily use, but it will hold up much longer than silver or gold, and can be significantly harder depending on the alloy used. Look for platinum that is 90% pure or higher, and alloys that include Cobalt or Ruthenium, not the much softer Iridium.

Palladium:
Lower in cost than platinum and with a significantly higher durability than gold, palladium is becoming a more popular choice on the jewelry market. Part of the platinum family of metals (but distinct from platinum itself), palladium shares platinum's ability to displace metal with damage, rather than wear away. For instance, your palladium ring may become scratched or bent with time, but unlike gold, there is minimal loss of metal, making these rings easier to repair. For platinum-like scratch resistance on a budget, palladium is your choice.

Silver and Gold:
Sterling silver and gold rings have retained popularity for their timeless beauty and classic nature, but they are by no means the only options on the jewelry market. When looking for scratch resistant rings, gold and silver may actually be poor choices compared to some of the alternatives available. Both are relatively soft metals that can be easily scratched, scuffed, or even bent. If you know someone who has been married for a while, you need only to ask to see their gold or silver ring to see the results of daily wear and tear over time. Most jewelers today offer lifetime care warranties on their rings-which can include re-polishing and resizing as the metal becomes stretched and warped-but you generally have to send the ring in every six months to a year to maintain these warranties, so be sure to inquire carefully about the details.

Another important factor to consider about silver and gold jewelry is that the color and properties of yellow gold mean that marks and scuffs will be much more visible than on sterling or white gold rings. Additionally, white gold is often rhodium-plated-coated with a thin layer of metal to add luster and brighten the color. This coating can generally be re-applied for a nominal fee, returning white gold to almost-new appearance.

There can be many other factors to consider when looking for scratch-resistant rings, and it is important to know that no ring is 100% scratch-proof. It all comes down to your decisions as a buyer to find the balance between durability and style, and the best way to do such is simply to look around.

Source: http://www.weddingrings.net/

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Art of Marriage

I came across this writing that nicely sums up what marriage should be:


by Wilferd Arlan Peterson

"A good marriage must be created.

In marriage the "little" things are the big things.

It is never being too old to hold hands.

It is remembering to say, ”I love you" at least once a day.

It is never going to sleep angry.

It is having a mutual sense of values, and common objectives.

It is standing together and facing the world.

It is forming a circle that gathers in the whole family.

It is speaking words of appreciation, and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.

It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.

It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

It is not only marrying the right person -- it is being the right partner."

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Itinerary - Switzerland and France

Switzerland:
Day 1: Singapore - Geneva
Day 2: Geneva
Day 3: Geneva-Interlaken
Day 4: Interlaken ~ Jungfraujoch/ Lauterbrunnen
Day 5: Interlake ~ Lauterbrunnen/Murren
Day 6:  Lucerne ~ Alpnachstad/Pilatus Kulm
Day 7: Lucerne ~ Lowendenkmal
Day 8: Lucerne-Geneva - France

France:
Day 9: Paris ~ Musee d Orsay/ Notre Dame Cathedral/River Seine Cruise
Day 10: Paris ~  Notre Dame Cathedral/Musee du Lourve
Day 11: Paris ~ Galeries Lafayette/La Vallee Village
Day 12:Chateau de Versailles/Effiel Tower/Arc de Triomphe
Day 13: Paris ~ Musee Rodin/Les Invalides
Day 14: Paris ~ Sacré Cœur/Moulin Rouge
Day 15: Paris ~ La Sainte Chapelle- Singapore
  
A quick summary of Europe free and easy itinerary to Switzerland and France. If there are specific places/ experiences that you like to share , please feel free.   Its good to know some other places that i can visit if i do go these countries again.