And what's a double-ring ceremony, anyway?

By Alyssa Brown
October 10, 2018
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Whether you plan to wear multiple wedding rings, have selected a stackable set, or a considering adding a second band to the one you already have, the art of wearing multiple rings is just that. Here, we break down everything you need to know about wearing more than one wedding ring, plus we explain what a double-ring ceremony really is.

Double-Ring Ceremony

According to Jerry Ehrenwald, president and CEO of the International Gemological Institute, a double-ring ceremony is when both the bride and the groom exchange rings. In some faiths, only one person receives a ring during the ceremony, but this is becoming less and less common. "Today, both people who are about to be wed may receive a wedding band," he says. "Historically, only the groom was required to give the bride a gift of value, which was usually a small coin." If the couple chooses not to have a double-ring ceremony, the bride typically waits to give the groom his ring after the ceremony is over, in private.

Exchanging Multiple Bands

Depending on your religion, you may choose to give a simple wedding band during the ceremony, then swap more decorative ones later. For example, it's traditional in Jewish ceremonies for the bride to be given a plain gold, unengraved band during the ceremony, but she may also choose a decorative option-one with a message, diamonds, or other gemstones-to wear, too. Most couples will exchange any additional rings after the ceremony is over.

Anniversary Rings

If you're gifted a special occasion ring or anniversary ring, you have the option to wear it in addition to your existing rings or swap them out for different events and occasions depending on formality. Some couples opt to upgrade their rings over time, or add a detail that the original ring may have been missing. For instance, you may want to add a halo around a solitaire ring as an anniversary gift.

Creating a Stacking Look

Some brides prefer the look of stacking rings and opt to add to the stack over time. Combining different metals, textures, and stones can allow you to mix your original engagement ring and wedding band with new pieces.

For the Traditionalists

Tradition has it that the wedding band is to be worn closest to the heart, while the engagement ring and additional bands can be stacked beyond it. But this is one of those traditions that modern brides are continuously changing and often choosing to ignore in the interest of comfort or their preferred aesthetic. Ultimately, you'll want to do what feels right for you.

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