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3 Things to do before the marriage proposal

Simple steps for a successful marriage proposal

Marriage proposal requires some background work to make it a successful one. It is not just about going down on your knee and asking her to marry you. You want this to be a special occasion, a moment to remember for a life-time, something for you both to be special and enjoyable.

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Well, if you won’t follow these three steps before the marriage proposal, what you thought would be the most intimate moment can end up in a disaster.

So what should you do?

Step 1 – Ask her parents

This is the first step and can be, for some guys ,the most painful step. I know it might feel awkward and it doesn’t really matter if you’ve been in relationship for long or if it was a short one. Asking the parents permission to marry their daughter isn’t exactly comfortable. But marriage proposal has some chronological order for a reason.

So why do it?

There are several reasons for asking the parents perdition. Firstly, you really don’t want to start the long term relationship on the wrong foot. Asking permission is a way of showing respect to your chosen person’s family. They will appreciate and remember it. Once you have, and hopefully got their permission, you will be bonded in a different way. You will have a secret together and that is a great connector.

Step 2 – Her taste in jewellery

Although you may feel she is the one who makes you a whole person you may have different tastes. What you might think is the best ring for her may be the worst choice in her opinion.

If you wonder what is the best way of ‘getting into her head’ and find out what she like read on.

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To find out what she likes or dislike in jewellery simply shift your mind towards hers. That means look at the type of jewellery she has already. Are they traditional or does she tend to swing towards the modern type of jewellery? I know it might not be the most interesting topic for youbut if she is talking on a friends’ engagement ring you should be all ears. What style of ring did her friend get? What is her opinion about it? Employ her best friend and share with her the great news. Ask her to be your eyes and ears when talking on someone else’s ring. A best friend can also stroll in a shopping centre and draw your girlfriend to a shop window, discussing the different rings. That is a great way to find out what she likes.

Step 3 – Do your homework

Buying an engagement ring is not something you should take lightly lightly. You will be spending much more than the average gift on the ring and you want it to be a nice ring, a ring your girlfriend will be happy to receive, aring she will be proud of to show her friends and a ring she will still be happy to wear in the years to come.

To get this meaningful ring right I invite you to download the FREE Engagement Ring Buying Guide. It is a step by step guide will lead you to the right ring for you. The ring she will love you even more for choosing. She will feel as if you steed into her mind and bought her the ring she would have chosen herself.

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Download your FREE guide here but if you have any questions I will be happy to talk you through the process. Click on the image below.

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Leap Year Proposal

Leap year – Origin of tradition and tips for 2016

I know it’s only January but you can never be too prepared…

So what is it about the tradition of women proposing on February 29th of a leap year?

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Today, although not common, nobody will make a fuss if you propose to your man. In the old days the rules of courting were very striked and a proposition by a women was unheard of.
So where did the tradition of women proposing on that day comes from?

There is an old Irish legend, saying that St. Brigid of Kildare, an Irish nun in the fifth century, was approached by maidens complaining their suitors were too shy to propose. As they wanted to change their status and become married women they asked the nun for help in changing the rules (you see, women fought for their rights many years before feminists burnt their bras).


The Irish nun decided to take action and help those single women. She went to ask St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, for permission so the women will be able to propose. The legend say that St. Patrick first agree for that to happen on every seventh year but after a bit more pleading from the nun he changed it to every four years on the leap year.

The story goes on to tell the nun then drop herself to St. Patrick’s feet and ask him to marry her but he refused and offered her a silk gown for comfort.

Since then there is the tradition of women proposing on February 29th on a leap year but if the man refuses in some places he should pay a fee, sufficient enough to buy a gown, in other places the man should give the women 12 pairs of gloves, so she can cover her hands and nobody see she is still single.

This was the legend. But how about you?
Will you propose this February 29th?
If you do what will you propose with? A diamond ring?

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If you man is the type who would be happily wearing one, then you should. I will invite you to download the Engagement Ring Buying Guide, which although was written with men in mind, it explains in length how to choose the right diamond. Alternatively, call me on 0845 600 5557 and I will be happy to guide you through the process.

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However, if you think he is not the type to wear a diamond rings, a great alternative would be cufflinks which are set with diamonds.

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But proposing is not only about the gift. You want to consider the location and the best timing to propose. Some men may feel uncomfortable with a women going down on her knee, and although traditionally this is how its done, you don’t have to follow it.

You want to make sure the day is special and that you are both very comfortable in that special moment.

Not all type of guys will be happy to be proposed by a women. If you have been in a relationship for long enough to consider marriage you probably know his preferences. If he is open minded, willing to try new experiences or if he is the sensitive type, he’d probably go along with your idea. You don’t have to go on national TV as well.


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However, if he is a traditional one, it probably won’t work. If that is the case, in your next wonder in the shopping area draw him towards jewellery shop and point at rings your friends were proposed with. He just might get the hint.

If you really want to get engaged but don’t dare to propose let me help. Just email me the name and email address of your special men and I will email him the link for the Engagement Ring Buying Guide. He might just buy into it. Don’t worry, he’ll never know you gave me his email, unless you tell him.

If you need any help until your special day contact me via the website or call me on 0845 600 5557 to arrange a time for your FREE consultation.




Wedding Dress or any dress

Wedding Dress – why choose bespoke over off the rack?

When it comes to weddings, choosing the rightt dress for you can be a long, tiring experience and not always have a happy ending. I invited Lindsey, a couture dress maker of an independent clothing company called Violet Flamingo, to tell you about her bespoke work. Lindsey studied design and manufacture at University, before working as an employee for an independent brand designer. After moving on from that job in 2011, she set up Violet Flamingo with an aim to make bespoke clothing. Lindsey demonstrates different angles of consideration when buying a bespoke wedding dress by choosing three diverse dresses to share what goes on behind the scenes. Over to you Lindsey…

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Lindsey James – Couture dress designer

In a sea of mass produced wedding dresses brides are more spoilt for choice than ever before. However, having a bespoke outfit made is a much more special and personal experience. Just imagine that every fold, sleeve or lace you can dream off can become your reality and will be made to fit you perfectly. I’ve always had a passion for making bespoke items as I love the idea of what I’m wearing as being truly unique.

My wedding dress clients have various reasons for choosing a bespoke service. They may have a unique figure and therefore struggle finding a good fit, have an idea in their mind for the ultimate wedding dress which simply cannot be shop bought or they may simply desire a versatile dress that can be used after the big day and other special occasions.

The real beauty of having a bespoke garment is that it will be made to the individual’s measurements and fit to perfection. My range of clients also include brides to be who wanted to save on their budget and so they bought a ready made dress, only to find it doesn’t fit very well. They then regret there choice and come to the studio looking for alterations and individual customizations. One thing I would always advise is to not buy any cheap replicas online. More often than not the dress will not look like the image shown on the website and most individuals are sorely disappointed by what arrives in the post.

Here are three of the brides that stick out in my mind –

Hannah Prince’s wedding dress

Hannah wanted a traditional wedding dress. This is not a usual request I deal with but at the same time is a service that is offered if that is what the customer wants.

So, why have a bespoke dress if you want traditional?

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Hannah first went to bridal shops. The first problem she faced was that, being slim, all the sample dresses were far too big on her. She literally looked like she was drowning in material and started to wonder if the right fitting dress even existed.

Hannah’s wedding was taking place in Gibraltar during Summer in 2015. So on top of the issues with size, there was also transportation and local climate to be taking into consideration.

Before our next meeting I narrowed down materials which I knew would travel well and wouldn’t need professional steaming upon arrival. With these choices this pushed us towards appropriate styles for these fabrics. Due to them being soft and flowing they were perfect to be used on designs inspired by the 1920’s, 1930’s and Grecian gowns (the last being a happy coincidence of being a perfect style for a warm climate). We were now getting to a point where we could bring together lots of ideas and through the process of sketching and re sketch (and plenty of input from Hannah) the result was a completely unique, personal design which was perfect for her petite frame.

Emma Underwood – wedding dress

Emma is an old friend of mine and had always wanted to get married in red. The day I received the message ‘it’s time to make my red dress’ I knew her partner had proposed! Emma was unsure about shape when it came to starting her wedding dress. I advised that she go and try on different styles to see which she preferred. The bridal studio Emma visited had lots of large dresses supported with underskirts. This didn’t really suit Emma, who always went for a classic style and most of her clothing features draping. I suggested she try slim cut wedding dresses and although Emma was not initially keen on the idea, after trying it on she liked it. We started looking at old Hollywood glamour and designers who are the best at this kind of cutting and draping.

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As Emma has a large bust she adores drape but needs the support underneath to feel completely comfortable. I created Emma’s dress all on a hidden steel boned corset, which is also a speciality of mine.

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Once we had this initial structure I then proceeded to literally build the drape gown onto this, it was a very lengthy process but ever fitting was worth it as she was over the moon with her final finished dress.

Gillian Eyre – wedding dress

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Gillian was very clear on the cut and style she was after. The jacket and dress were made so after the wedding she could wear them again. The main part of the brief was she wanted to wear her Dr Martens which featured beautiful rose embroidery. Ideally she was looking for a fabric that would have similar kinds of flowers on. I exceeded her expectations when I suggested we have the flowers replicated onto the garment. After photographing the boot and digitizing the image I could get the flowers embroidered onto the handmade garment.

After the wedding Gillian was able to wear the jacket, the detachable floral train was made to become an oversized scarf and the dress shortened so she is able to use each element of the wedding outfit again.

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Gillian’s dress was a new and different project I enjoyed creating this summer. It is a quintessential bespoke gown, she had very clear ideas of what she wanted but I pushed her ideas further to then include bespoke embroidery. This made it not only a truly unique dress but the material was also a complete one off, no one in the world will own these garments, which in my eyes is what choosing to have bespoke over ready-to-wear is all about.

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These are just three of my lovely brides. Each client has different reasons for her chosen piece. Personally, I absolutely love the challenge of making each bride happy on their big day. If you ever require a bespoke outfit, and it doesn’t have to be a wedding dress, please get in touch as Violet Flamingo might be the company for you.

Remember if you can imagine it, I can make it!

Images of other bespoke brides from Violet Flamingo –

Amanda Dodd

Over sized white trouser with hand embellished guipure lace and crystals, removable black sash belt, matching fascinator and embellished vest.

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Danielle Troy

Duchess satin swing dress in ivory and magenta

Janine Povey

swing dress in white taffeta and mint polka dot tulle, with a matching fly away veil.



Nelly Wood

Ivory satin pencil skirt and cropped swing jacket.

Rae Butterworth

Leopard print swing dress with detachable belt and bolero jacket.


Rebecca Griffiths

Ivory satin swing dress overlaid with tulle and hemmed with a beautiful beaded lace trim.


Credit : Ross Harvey wedding photography www.rossharvey.com

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Choosing Your Wedding Cake

Wedding cake – 8 top tips

Our new contributor, Judith Bond joins us today to share her top tips on how to choose your wedding cake. Judith is a bespoke Cake Maker from North Wales and is the owner of Judith Bond Cakes based in Llandudno. As well as Wedding cakes, Judith specialises in celebrations, cupcakes and corporate events and has customers all along the North Wales coast and into Chester. Judith is an enthusiastic photographer and a member of the Welshot Photographic Academy and she loves writing her blog charting her delightful adventures in cake. You can find out more about Judith on her new website . Her work has also been published in Cupcake Heaven Magazine. We are delighted that Judith has joined us and hope you enjoy her blog.

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Kate Winslet famously said:

Romance to me is spontaneity. It’s not diamonds, it’s a bunch of daffodils freshly picked from the field”.

Of course she’s right – romance means so many different things to each of us and it’s hard to beat a bunch of spring daffodils. But we all love diamonds too – it’s the perfect sign and seal of our commitment to each other in engagement and then marriage.

Not many of us should expect a 15 carat diamond engagement ring like the one Kanye West placed on Kim Kardashian’s finger when he popped the question in a baseball stadium with a full orchestra, but every diamond however large or small means the world to us and hopefully sits on our finger for a good many years.

Did you know that the word diamond is derived from the ancient Greek adámas meaning, “proper”, “unalterable”, “unbreakable”. I love this.

Once you’ve chosen your diamond ring, you’ll have a long list of other things to plan for your big day including your wedding cake – and there’s more to it than you might, at first, think.


At Judith Bond Cakes, we’ve been working with brides across North Wales for nearly 3 years and have learnt a thing or two about choosing your cake. I’ve put together a ‘DIAMOND’ list to give you my top tips on how to choose your Cake Maker and have the cake of your dreams.


Yes, you’re allowed to dream. It’s your big day and within reason – and budget – you get to have whatever you want. So pour over Pinterest, imagine with Instagram, mooch through Wedding Magazines – collect the photographs you like, think about the colours your love, dream away – it’s a great place to start.

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When I meet with brides, I always ask them to bring pictures, colour swatches, a copy of the invitation and anything else that helps me get the feel of the wedding. It will help you explain your ideas and will help me understand better and hopefully make you the cake you’ve been dreaming of.

Hannah brought me a B&Q paint colour chart to show me the 3 shades of blue she wanted on her wedding cupcakes and it was so helpful!

Involve the Groom

Your wedding cake is very significant because it’s the first thing you and your groom will do together. You will jointly hold the knife and cut into your cake together as you set out on your married life.  When you’re planning your cake, try and involve him. Most cake decorators offer different flavoured tiers so perhaps your groom would like a tier in his favourite flavour so he gets to really enjoy it on the day. You might find he has some ideas about the design and shape of the cake, so you can involve him in the planning.

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Hailey and Adam are one of the cutest couples I have worked with. They’d been together for ages, had saved up for the wedding of their dreams and both came to the consultation to talk about their cake. Adam’s main request was that one of the tiers be double chocolate and his wish was my command. It was lovely to see them discuss design ideas together so they felt it was very much a joint project.

Ask Around

Unless you know a cake decorator that you can trust, you’ll be looking around to find someone. The best referrals will come from your friends or colleagues – people who you know and who’s opinion you trust.

  • It would be wise to investigate 2 or 3 decorators in your area. If they have a shop, visit and look at their work
  • Do you have rapport with them? Do you think you can work well together and they can make a good job of what you are asking for?
  • Make sure they are registered as a proper business – just because you’ve seen photographs on facebook doesn’t mean they are operating properly.
  • They must have a Food Safety Level 2 Certificate; and they must have a Local Authority Food Hygiene rating – this is the green label or ‘scores on the doors’ that you see on restaurant doors that indicates a rating between 1 and 5. If this is not displayed in the shop, you must ask what rating they have achieved. There is no reason for a Cake Business to have less than 5.
  • Check out reviews on their website and social media – you’ll gain a lot of information from what other people say about them

Mind the Budget

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The average UK wedding costs in excess of £18,000 today. Of course savings can be made in different areas – you can do some of the work yourself and use the skills of your friends and family to help keep costs down. A budget is essential and it’s wise to keep within it.

We don’t publish a price list for weddings but I have a rough guide that I give to brides when they show an interest. I would often ask my brides what their budget is, and I can then design them something that will comfortably fit within their means and make sure there’s plenty of cake to go round.

Opt for Original

It’s amazing how much wedding cake trends have changed. My parents married in 1970 with a 3 tier royal iced fruit cake complete with columns and silk flowers. It was beautiful in it’s day but there was no choice at all – you went to the Bakery – and they only wanted to know the date!

Wedding cake

Today cake trends are changing so rapidly it’s hard to keep up. My Autumn 2015 issue of Wedding Cakes tells me that we can expect rustic inspired wedding cakes to continue – this includes naked cakes, semi naked cakes, buttercream cakes, and bark like textures.

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This summer we worked with Catrin and Tim on their summer fruits Naked Wedding Cakes decorated with fresh flowers and blackberries – they chose their favourite flavours for each tier and it fitted in perfectly with their rustic barn wedding reception.

Numbers matter

Whatever size wedding you are dreaming of, you need to make sure you have enough slices to go round. Decide whether you want to keep a tier for a later occasion, although this will usually only work with fruit cake, as sponge has a shorter shelf life.

If you have a good number of guests, one of the ways you can keep your costs down is to have an additional cake. We offer our brides an extra cutting cake, normally plain iced, which we deliver straight to the kitchen. They will have this ready sliced up so that when you have your ‘cake cutting’ moment, the staff can whistle in and serve the cake really quickly, without your guests waiting around

Do a taste test

However amazing your cake looks, it needs to taste fantastic too. When you have chosen your Cake Maker, you should be offered a taste test so you can make a final decision on flavours.

We offer our 12 distinctive flavours publicised on our website. When you book a wedding consultation with us, you can choose up to 3 flavours to try and I’ll arrange to come to your home, talk through your plans and decide on your flavours over a nice cup of tea.

Wedding Cake

As well as the classics, you can choose Fresh Raspberry – a lovely fresh flavour, perfect for a summer garden party or country picnic. Fresh vanilla sponge with baked in fruit, swirled with pink coulis buttercream, topped with fresh sugared raspberry.

Our Orange Poppy Seed is inspired by the still quiet of a little hotel in Quelfes nestled in the orange groves, a stones-throw from Faro, in the Algarve. This fresh citrus flavoured poppy seed sponge is swirled with zesty orange buttercream and is the perfect treat for a summer’s day

Our Chocolate Fudge is ever popular, perfect for chocolate lovers, and described by one of our customers as “epic”. It’s a rich fudgy chocolate sponge is swirled with indulgent chocolate ganache buttercream.

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You might like our Almond Amaretto – straight from the sun drenched town of Ravello on the gorgeous Amalfi coast. Nutty almond white sponge covered with luxurious amaretto buttercream topped with crumbled amaretto biscuit.

Our customer favourite this summer has been Salted Caramel. Everyone’s going mad for it and it’s easy to see why – this rich chocolate sponge filled with oozy salted caramel sauce swirled with cream caramel frosting will have coming back for more, and more, and more.

Settle in writing

After your wedding consultation, your taste test and your exchange of emails over details – you should make sure you have all the details of what you have ordered including costs settled in writing. This will act as your contract and it should lay out what you expect from your cake maker, and what they expect from you in terms of organisation and planning.

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Many brides take out wedding insurance now to cover them for any let downs in the planning process. You don’t have to do this but it may give you peace of mind. Your Cake Maker should have professional indemnity insurance and commercial-use car insurance for deliveries and it may be worth checking this before you sign off your deposit.

When we take a wedding booking, we ask our brides to pay at 50% deposit to secure their order. This is fairly common practice in the cake world and ensures commitment on both sides to what has been agreed.

I hope my little list will help you to choose your Cake Maker wisely and if you are in North Wales / Chester area we’d love to meet you and talk about how we can make the cake of your dreams.

We’d love you to call by our brand new website  and have a good look round and we wish you all the happiness in the world with your forthcoming Big Day and new life ahead.

Love, Judith x

The Koh-I-Noor to return to India

Will Queen Elizabeth II return the Koh-I-Noor to India?

It seem that the Koh-I-Noor with its long history is not at rest. In these days a united businessmen and Bollywood actors are getting together on one mission: Get the Koh-I-Noor back to its homeland, India.

The 105.06 carat diamond, worth over £100 million, and set in the Queen’s crown was fought for, stolen and eventually given to Queen Victoria by the last ruler of the Sikhs, Duleep Singh, after the British conquered Punjab.

Although the Koh-I-Noor, that originally weigh 186 carat and only later was cut to its current weight as demanded by Prince Albert, has been part of the crown jewels through several reigns it might have to return to India.

The diamond was worn by Queen Victoria, Queen Alexandra (wife of King Edward VII), Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth. The diamond is wore only by female members of the British Royal Family. This is due to an alleged curse on the Kohinoor that affects males who wear it (but females are immune).

The Bollywood stars and businessmen wishing to return the Koh-I-Noor to India, and to Indian nation its pride. They instructed their lawyers to begin legal proceeding in London’s High Court and are willing to take it farther to International Court of Justice.

This group of influential people is not alone in their fight for the Koh-I-Noor. Indian-origin British MP Keith Vatz called last week for the diamond to be returned to India next week, while Prime Minister Nerandra Modi visit the UK. This came as a response to Congress MP Shashi Tharoor’s recent speak at the Oxford Union calling Britain to pay compensation to India for the 200 years of its brutal colonial rule. However, the British feel the diamond is where it should be as it was part of a legally bind treaty.  

Bollywood stars and businessmen instruct lawyers to begin legal proceedings in London’s High Court. They are demanding that the Government return the 105-carat diamond, which they say was stolen from its true home. So far the British refused the request.

British lawyers instructed by the ‘Mountain of Light’ group, the translation of Koh-i-Noor, are looking to deal with the case on the basis of the Holocaust Act, demanding the return of cultural object from national institutions in the UK to their legal owners.

The Koh-I-Noor can be seen at The Tower of London with the crown jewels but it is yet unclear if it will stay there or returned to India.

Where do you think the Koh-I-Noor should reside?

The Blue Moon Diamond

The Blue Moon diamond – flawless on auction

This year November is a truly exciting month. Only last week I shared with you the details of the Christie’s cushion-shaped stone, dubbed “In the Pink”, that was to go on auction this Tuesday and is estimated to sell for $23-28 million or even higher. The day after that will be Sotheby’s auction with the amazing Blue Moon diamond.

The Blue Moon diamond is a “fancy vivid” blue diamond which may break a record as Sotheby’s listing its projected sale price at between $35-$55 million (32-51 million euros).


AP Images/Kirsty Wigglesworth Model Charlene Bonnithon wears the rare Blue Moon Diamond at Sotheby’s auction rooms in London.

The flawless “Blue Moon” stone was discovered in South Africa in January last year, and is the largest cushion-shaped stone in that category ever to appear at auction. The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) graded the diamond to be internally flawless” and it was categorised as vivid blue diamond.

Sotheby’s is aiming to beat its own record of colour diamonds. Their last record was set in November 2010 in Geneva, with a 24.78ct pink diamond, known as the Graff Pink, fetched $46 million. The record sale for a blue diamond so far came in November last year, when a 9.75 carats fetched $32.6 million at an auction in New York.

There is a good chance the record will be broken this Wednesday when the head of Sotheby’s international jewellery division describe the Blue Moon as “ “a simply sensational stone of perfect colour and purity.”

The Blue Moon weighs 12.03 carats and will be traveling for viewing in Hong Kong, London and New York before arriving to the auction in Geneva on November 11th.

Sotheby’s Rare Blue Moon Diamond

Sotheby’s Rare Blue Moon Diamond – 12.03ct

It is the nearly the end of September and the Sotheby’s blue diamond seem to be the magnet for the October auction.


The 12.03 rare internally flawless blue moon diamond is one of its kind. It is the largest ever cushion cut diamond to appear on auction. Sotheby’s will  be auctioning this rare blue moon diamond on November 11 at the Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale in Geneva.


The diamond got its name the ‘Blue Moon Diamond’  due to the rarity of its flawless clarity and its the highest possible colour grading for blue diamonds. The name stems from the expression ‘once in a blue moon’ symbolising the rarity of the diamond.

The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) which gave the diamond the highest possible grading given fro blue diamonds and state the colour of the diamond was “likely to have never before been seen within such a large diamond or any gemstone.” GIA also state that “While any diamond with natural blue coloration is a rare discovery, some are so exceptional that they emerge only once in a lifetime. The Blue Moon Diamond is one of those remarkable occurrences.”


Due to its condition and rarity, the diamond is estimated to be sold for a price somewhere between $35 million and $55 million (£22.5m – £35.5m). The diamond will be exhibit in Hong Kong October 2-6, in London October 18-22 and in New York City October 30 to November 1. From there, it’ll travel to Geneva for auction.






A Push Present – For a New Mum

A Push Present – What is it?

A new baby in the family is celebrated throughout the world regardless to religion, culture or race. In some cultures tradition dictates a new mum gets a gift in others the mum gets a gift for every child she has. This is where the name Push Present comes from.

Push present is usually given to the mum by her husband as a way of showing his appreciation to the wife. The reason for that is that a women’s role during pregnancy and birth is very demanding. This is a time when women often find strength they were not aware they had within themselves. Diamonds are extremely hard yet very beautiful, just as a mother for a new baby is, and this is why diamond jewellery is usually the chosen gift for a push present.

What can you choose for a push present?

Diamond Ring

Most women at this stage of the relationship have already has an engagement ring and a wedding ring. This is the time to spoil your wife with a dress ring she will be happy to wear and show her friends.

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If you are not married and not planning to get married it doesn’t mean the new mum cannot have a lifestyle ring as a push present. It is not hinting towards marriage or engagement however, it is a nice gift to receive.

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Some women suffer from water retention after the pregnancy and the fingers may be a little swollen than they usually are so you might want to do your research regarding the ring size at the beginning of the pregnancy.

Diamond Pendant

Pendants are great as a push present as you cannot go wrong with size and the mum will be able to wear it immediately after receiving the gift. You can choose for a symbolic pendant that express your felling to her like a heart pendant.

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If your partner already has a halo diamond ring match the pendant with a halo pendant for the push present.

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If the budget doesn’t allow the full on diamond pendant mix it up with a gem stone and you will get an affordable and pretty diamond jewellery.

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Diamond Earrings

I would normally recommend to buy stud diamond earring as a push present as babies, when starting growing a little and get curious, will find the sparkly diamond earring that are dangling from mummy’s ears the most exciting things to pull. This can be quite painful for the mum. If you want your partner to wear her push present, and I don’t mean when the baby starting school, then stud earrings should be your choice.

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At H&D Diamonds you can find lots of diamond jewellery to choose from and make a new mum happy. Whether it is a lifestyle ring, a dress ring, a pendant, an earring or bracelets you are sure to find a diamond jewellery for your partner.

For a FREE diamond and jewellery consultation with a diamond grader call 0345 600 5557. Alternatively, click on the image below.

How to Choose a Diamond Pendant

Diamond pendant – What to consider

Diamond Pendant – 0.50ct


Pendants are a popular gift to give to a women. They can be given as a present on a birthday, for the birth of a child, Christmas or anniversary. There isn’t really a bad time for gifting a women with a pendant and even more so with a diamond pendant. So how will get it right?

Rose Shape Diamond Pendant – 0.60ct

Overall shape

First to consider is the overall shape you are after. Are you after a diamond pendant that will be of a statement piece? In that case you might want to consider a larger. If however you know the person who will eventually be wearing the pendant is of the modest type, they might be happy to receive an solitaire pendant. A heart shape pendant will communicate only one thing of course, your love to her.

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Diamond shape

Most diamond pendants that are set with more than one diamond are of round brilliant shape. But what if you know the person you buy the pendant to doesn’t like, or prefer another shape? You can either look at a cluster in a different shape than a round or opt for a solitaire in the shape of diamond she likes. At H&D Diamonds we can source the suitable mount for any shape of diamond you are after or even create the pendant to your specification.

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Using gemstones is a great way to add some colour to anyone’s day. I would normally recommend having a gemstone jewellery, any type of jewellery, set with diamonds around as it show the beauty of the gemstone in a better light and generally add the sparkle we expect from a diamond. This is ideal especially if you know there is a specific gemstone the other person likes.

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Budgeting for a diamond pendant

When buying a diamond pendant, like any other purchase, you should have a general idea of what is the budget you are willing to spend. Generally speaking the price of diamonds rises much higher than the size of the diamond. So you would pay much less on 0.98 carat diamond than on a 1.02 carat diamond just because you have crossed the 1.00 carat mark. In other words, buying several small diamonds that makes up 1.00 in weight will be a lot cheaper than buying a 1.00 carat diamond solitaire. This is where the cluster diamond pendants can help with managing your budget. Alternatively, you could use a gemstone. This choice will also lower the overall price for the pendant since the main centre stone will be anything but diamond.

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At H&D Diamond website you can find a sample of our jewellery and we keep updating and refreshing the selection. If you haven’t found the pendant you are after please call us on 0345 600 5557 and we will be happy to source the pendant you are after. Alternatively, click on the image below and use the contact form.

Giving Away the Bride

Giving away the bride – Tradition Vs. modern lives

Giving away the bride is a tradition from the times when daughters were considered as part of the ‘property’ of the father or owned by him. On the wedding day the father would be giving the bride, his daughter, to the groom who would be the new owner. The bride was given in return for a bride price or dowry.

Some brides to be will be happy to follow the tradition. Have their father giving them away will be respectful towards the dad’s years of raising them up. Some fathers would like to take the opportunity to show his love to his daughter just like this father did in this YouTube video

Many brides to be, however, do not feel very comfortable with the idea behind this tradition for various reasons. If this is how you feel here are a few options you may consider in reply for the officiant question: Who gives this women to be married to this man?

Today, many couples in relationships are sharing a home together before the marriage day. An independent women may feel odd or even belittled by the idea that she is being considered as one or another’s property. If this is you and you do not wish to be given away by your father you could answer: She gives herself with the whole family’s support.

You could also ask the officiant to change the question and instead of asking about giving away the bride ask one of the parents or both if they gave their blessing for the marriage.

Some couple prefer to sway away from the tradition of giving away the bride by the father but like to share the appreciation to both parents of bride and groom. When that is the case the officiant may include in his initial speech that the couple standing there are part of a greater family tree. A tree that has gave them love, support, traditions and knowledge throughout their lives. This will follow by approaching both parents of the bride and groom in tern and asking them, as the representative of the whole family, if they will take the bride or the groom to their family and hearts. This way you achieve equality between the bride, the groom and both their parents. It also respect the families of each other and their importance in getting their ofsprings to this very special day in their life.

Some people, especially when marrying at an older age, feel they have not been shaped to whoever they are just by their family but also by their circle of friends who they chose to share their celebration with. You can include them all by slightly changing the official’s question and asking who has the honour of presenting this women to be married to this man?’. A question that can be answered by the person who is giving away the bride on behalf of the family and her friends.

Choosing any of the non traditional versions of giving away the bride is a way to include your family, your partner’s family and may be even your friends.

You can talk to the official about your wishes in the ceremony and he or she should accommodate accordingly.

If you haven’t purchased your wedding bands there is no better time than the present. Contact us through the website or by calling 0345 600 5557 to order.


Saving For Engagement Ring

Saving for engagement ring in China may be lengthy

In contrast to the previous blog about Beyonce splashing her money on diamonds this story is about a Chinese boy that kept his promise to his childhood sweetheart.

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Diamond Solitaire

When a nine years old boy tells a girl ‘I will save up money from now on until I marry you’ most grown up with have a smile but will not take it too seriously.

This was not the case for that particular boy. In 1996 he promised that to his childhood sweetheart and from then on he started saving for engagment ring.  He started with coins he got from his parents as pocket money. When he grew up symbolically he decided to keep the savings in coines.

Although the two kept in touch over the passing 20 year, when they were living in different cities and saw each other only few times each year.

When eventually the loved women came back to live in her home town the now matured man went to the bank to change all hisd coins. he saved over $1,600 in coins!! The bank said he came with bags weighing over 150kg filled with coins.

That was enough to buy an engagement ring and proposed to his loved one.

She said yes!

Bridesmaids and The wedding party

Who to choose to be your wedding party?

Traditionally the wedding party includes maid of honour and best man, bridesmaids and Groomsmen, rings bearers and flower girls. However, in many cases couples choose to have a small and intimate wedding where the traditional wedding party will outnumber the guests. I will explain the role of each member for the party but you can decide for yourself if you want to include all members of the wedding party or pick and chose the one suitable to you and the nature of your wedding.

It is important to remember that being part of the wedding party include a high level of responsibility and financial expense. Before you ask anyone take moment to consider who is best for the role, ensure they are aware of the commitment and what it entail. Do not expect everyone to say yes and be ready with plan B should one of them cannot for any reason to commit.

So why do we need so many people ion our party? and what are their roles?

The maid of honour:

Traditionally this role was saved for the closest in age sister of the bride. Today you can ask a close friend, a parent or event an adult child.

The maid of honour’s role is similar to the one of a personal assistant in a way. She is the one that delegates the wishes of the bride to the other bridesmaids and sometimes even the guests. She will also be the one who will help the bride with her dress shopping and the ones of the bridesmaids and organise the wedding shower and sometimes the bachelor party. The maid of honour should also be able to provide emotional support when needed, and in times of stress you may have some sensitive moments. If the person you had in mind is disorganise you might want to reconsider your choice. However, if you have two best friends and both are capable of doing the role there is no rule saying you can’t have two maids of honour.

At the wedding the maid of honour will be right behind the bride on her way to the alter, will hold the bouquet at the ceremony and tending to the veil.

The Best Man:

As with the Bride of Honour, this role use to be manned by the brother of the groom however, any good friend, as long as he is willing to take on the responsibility, will be good for the role.

Just like the bride of honour, the best man’s role comes with plenty of responsibility. From helping the groom with choosing the tuxedos, making sure everyone arrives on the measurements day and planning the bachelor party. He will also be by the side of the groom in the ceremony and may hold the rings. During the reception the best man will be the man who keeps the gift envelopes safely and will be usually the first to raise a toast at the reception and will usher the couple safely at the end of the party.


There is no right or wrong number of bridesmaids you should decide on but the team is usually consist of a good friend or a couple of them, a relative and the goom’s sister.

The bridesmaid will help the maid of honour in executing the tasks under her responsibility. They may help plan the wedding shower party and will be buying the dress were asked to. It is nice to consult with the bridesmaid as to the style of dress as different women will have different dress shape to complement their figure. In many weddings the bridesmaid will have same material chosen for the dresses but with different pattern to complement their body shape. After all, you would want your bridesmaids to feel comfortable and happy with the way the look on your day. At the ceremony they usually walk before the maid of honour and at times will be paired with the groomsman.

It is customary for the bride to give the bridesmaid a gift showing her appreciation to their contribution on her big day. Mostly a jewellery is the chosen gift but all gifts are acceptable if they make the bridesmaid happy. Like with the dresses, not all gifts have to be the same but they should be of the same value. All apart from the bride of honour who should have a gift that is of a higher value for she contributed most.


Just like the bridesmaids you want around you people you feel comfortable with and that are close to you. They could be a brother or few of them, the brother of the bride or a very good friend.

The groomsmen are the one who will help organise the bachelor party before the wedding and make sure they are all fitted for their tuxedo the buy for the wedding day. They will be most noticeable on the wedding day as they will be in the procession next to the bridesmaids in the ceremony and will be ushering guests to the reception venue. It is important to have as many helpers as possible at this time , especially with a large wedding, it can get overwhelming.

As the bridesmaid they too are given a token of appreciation by the groom. It is usually a small luxury item but if you are not sure about what they may like a gift voucher can be a good option. As with the bridesmaids the gift doesn’t have to be the same but the value should be similar. The best man should receive a slightly more expensive gift as a thank you for his extended contribution.

Ring bearers and the flower girls:

If you have small children you both feel particularly close too they can have this roles. The role of the ring bearer, as the name suggest, carry the rings on a small pillow. If he is too young you can gently saw the rings to the cushion. He will walk with the flower girl before the bride down the aisle, who will hold a basket and scatter petals as she walks towards the alter. Both will be dressed with your input to the chosen outfit but we suggest you be sensitive to the parent’s budget. It is recommendable the children are not younger than 5 years old and you should bare in mind they are just kids and you might have a shy child who will not want to be in the centre of attention. If you are not emotionally connected to any particular child you can pass their official roles to the bridesmaids and the best man.

If you haven’t purchased your wedding rings yet my advice to you is to not procrastinate the rings. After all they will stay with you way after the wedding day and it is just another thing to tick off your to do list. Call me on 0345 600 5557 and I will be happy to source your rings for you directly from trade suppliers so you don’t have to pay for any middleman or overheads of a shop. Alternatively, click on the image below.

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