An inscription can add sentimentality and personalization to any ring.
Credit: Greg Finck

Wedding bands symbolize undying love and commitment between a couple. To personalize their big-day jewelry, many brides and grooms choose to engrave their bands with meaningful words, dates, or phrases. The inscription is sentimental, and, since it's hidden from the world, something you get to keep all to yourselves. If you're thinking about engraving your wedding band, here's everything you need to know about the cost, method, timeline, and more.

Can my band be engraved?

First and foremost, determine if your wedding ring can be engraved. Smooth bands with a width greater than three millimeters are the best contenders; anything narrower will result in too-small lettering that's often sloppy and illegible. Also consider the material of the band: Soft metals like gold, platinum, and silver can be easily engraved by machine or hand. On the other hand, harder metals like titanium, tungsten, and palladium prove more challenging. With that said, some jewelry shops can rely on modern machines to make inscriptions on even harder surfaces, so be sure to inquire with a few different stores.

What should I have engraved?

Couples have complete freedom when it comes to wedding band engraving. You may choose just about anything-a word, a phrase, your wedding date, your monogram, or anything else their heart desires-assuming the length is right. Talk to your jeweler before you have your heart set on the message. They may have a maximum length since anything with too many words may appear too tiny and cramped on the shank.

How can I engrave the ring?

After picking out your wedding bands, ask the jeweler if they offer engraving. Some smaller shops won't have the proper equipment, but they might be able to recommend another local retailer. It's best to recruit someone with plenty of engraving experience to leave less room for error.

When should I engrave the ring?

If you want the bands engraved before you exchange them at the ceremony, ask the shop for a projected timeline a few months before the big day. Some jewelers can engrave the bands in mere hours, while others require a full month-the final estimate depends on the difficulty of your inscription and the jeweler's workload.

What is the expected cost?

Wedding band engraving is an overall affordable process, typically ranging in price from $25 to $75 per ring. Factors that influence the cost include number of characters and method of engraving. Expect a heftier price tag for longer messages and for hand engraving, which provides greater customization and personality than machine engraving.

What else should I consider?

Before you bring your rings to the jeweler to be engraved, consider these other important details.

  • Resizing: Always size your ring before engraving. If you need to resize it afterward, the inscription will warp unattractively.
  • Spelling and grammar: Engravings can't easily be edited, so it's vital to provide the correct spelling of names and words to the jeweler.
  • Font: Although some shops may be able to engrave with fancy fonts, these also drive up the cost of the inscription.


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