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Looking for wedding bands on Etsy, I stumbled across LaurieSarahDesigns store. There I saw a section for what I read as “management rings.” Weird, I thought. Rings you get for managing at work? Rings you get from management as a long service award? Not completely unheard of, though. One of my bosses wears a beautiful ring with our newspaper’s name on it, and jokes that she is married to her job.

Then I looked a bit closer. It actually read “mangagement” rings. Adorable!

As you can see, they are a bit unusual for men’s rings. A bit more expensive than plain bands, as well. Pretty nice baubles for proposing to your boyfriend, though. Pretty far off from the plastic vinyl record toy ring I gave my man!

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I love the idea of secret encoded rings, and binary code fits the bill. Although I am no expert in it, I have a rough understanding. My boyfriend has a background in computer engineering and I’m sure would explain it more in depth to me. Basically, numbers can be used to signify letters of the alphabet.

The way it is used in these jewellery applications is as such: 00001 is one and also “A”, 00010 is two and also “B” 00011 is three and also “C” and so on. A ‘track’ is engraved to show a 1 and left blank for a 0. Therefore, there is a physical representation of the letter…which is actually a number. (Is that clear as mud for you?)

Here are some neat ideas for a ring for the computer literate man in your life.

This one on the left is from ecologically minded greenKarat. It’s a custom design that starts at around $1000.

Jonathan Ben-Tovim does “encoder rings.” They kind of look like braille, no?  Ben-Tovim is actually an industrial designer, but chose rings as a way to store personal information by using binary code. The rings are limited to a 64 character message, but that’s a lot longer than what you can get by just engraving. Besides, that’s so 19th century!

Clear binary ring

Ben-Tovim's clear binary ring

[via: The Carrot Box]

Fancy Jewels in Seattle also did a custom binary ring for a client:

Perhaps one with gemstones?

Perhaps one with gemstones?

Bonus: Sculptor Gideon Weisz also does a version of a binary ring.

Baseball diamond ring, anyone?

Baseball diamond ring, anyone?

Before I came up with the idea of the nesting matyroshka doll proposal for my man, I considered many many other options. A custom beer bottle, fancy dinner at Vegas restaurant, renting a billboard, a treasure hunt… maybe I’ll blog about those ideas some day, for those out there unsure on the best way to propose to their boyfriends.

In any case, something I had also considered was something to do with football. He is an NFL fan, but since we live in Canada, it was going to be hard to pull something together. Sporting events seem a popular place for proposals. Perhaps because it’s public and it’s something both of the engagees enjoy; or atleast I hope so! I, personally, would find it overwhelming and a bit embarrassing to have that much attention, it’s just not my thing.

In any case, Yankee Stadium, the spot of many Jumbotron/diamondvision proposals, is closing/moving this year after 85 years of baseball! Michael C Fina, the jeweller, and Hearts on Fire wanted the last proposal there to be something special so they held a contest for people to win the opportunity to be the last proposal there.  The winner of the contest won a 1.5 carat Hearts On Fire diamond engagement ring valued at $40,000, four Yankees tickets, and a televised marriage proposal during the final game at the original Yankee Stadium.

So, on September 18, Bill Davis proposed to Kate Cannon…and she said yes! Davis won the contest out of 8000 entries. Seemed like a good couple to get it done; they met after Davis’ first wife passed away, and fell in love while attending Yankee games together. There are plans to incorporate a Yankee theme into their wedding.

I doubt you need a $40,000 ring to do it, but if you guy is into baseball and he’s into public events, maybe a baseball game is a good place to ask him to marry you.

Here are some beautiful ring alternatives for your man, in wood.

Some things to consider when thinking about getting a wood ring:

  • durability. Some woods are softer than others, and no wood will be as strong as even a softer metal. Probably not the best choice for someone who works with their hands a lot.
  • sizing. Because it’s wood, the sizing should be right the first time, it’s difficult (if impossible) to resize. Do two measures, one upon waking, and the other in the middle of the day.
  • price. Wood rings can be considerably more affordable than other materials, but can be upgraded with metals and inlays.
  • inscription. Wood can be easily burnt into or inscribed upon making personalization very easy.
  • The meaning of the wood. Here is a sample of some meanings behind different types of woods.

First row, left to right: Juniper heart ring from touchwoodrings & titanium and jarrah inlay ring from Rob and Lean on etsy.

Second row, left to right: A koa and titanium ring from tropical grains,  wood and silver from wood-rings.com, the next three are all from woodenringsandthings.com; walnut and bloodwood, ebony, maple and bocote and purpleheart & walnut and lignum vitae.