We’re not really strangers: Kelly and Chrissie put a ring on it

We’re not really strangers: Kelly and Chrissie put a ring on it
February 19, 2024 Laila Raza

Meet Kelly and Chrissie.

Their paths crossed on the dating app, Her. They bonded over books, sci-fi, fantasy and their messages quickly turned into essays.

They couldn’t get enough of each other and before they even met in person, they started playing the card game, We’re Not Really Strangers (WNRS).

If you haven’t heard of WNRS, it’s a game that prompts deep conversations and meaningful connections. The questions Kelly and Chrissie answered, and the thoughts these questions provoked, were just the beginning of a strong foundation built on trust, love and a touch of cheeky humour.

In mid 2023, Chrissie proposed (adorably, during a game of WNRS). The last card of the game asked her to write a message. So she wrote “Will You Marry Me?”

It was one of the happiest moments of their lives, so they decided to end the year by putting a ring on it (again)!

As Kelly and Chrissie researched engagement ring designers, they came across the guide “How to Create a Storytelling Piece of Jewellery”. The guide asks 5 key questions to help you identify your personal story and translate it into a piece of jewellery.

“We have used it to put together the following brief,” Chrissie said in her email. “Apologies, it is not that brief ”.

It introduced Chrissie as a “colourful nurse who brightens every room” and Kelly as “a hopeless romantic graphic designer”. They love their cats, strong women, warriors, superheroes and Sailor Moon (remember this – it’s important for later).

During our consult I sketched up some designs, suggesting subtle ways to incorporate secret stories into the ring. While sketching some hidden gemstones under the shield cut centre diamond, I heard a gasp.

Chrissie had stopped short and both women turned to look each other. No words were exchanged for a few seconds, but in that moment we all knew that we were onto something.

“I was just telling Kelly before the call that I would love to include a Sailor Moon reference in this ring, but I didn’t think it would actually happen,” Chrissie said excitedly.

Coincidentally, the placement of the gems had instantly reminded her of Sailor Moon’s Crystal Star brooch.

Kelly and Chrissie
Kelly and Chrissie engagement ring

The 4 gems were chosen to represent the layers of Chrissie and Kelly’s life together:

  • A red ruby at the base, for the foundation of their love
  • Pink and orange sapphires for their favourite colours
  • A yellow sapphire at the top, for the joy that surrounds them and lies ahead
salt and pepper diamond engagement ring backside

It was one of those moments of serendipity that happens so often in a design session, where one tiny detail becomes everything that makes a piece of jewellery infinitely special to its owner.

“The shield cut diamond is a nod to Sailor Moon and all the other strong women I look up to,” said Chrissie. “The shield speaks to protecting what you love, showing strength and demanding justice”.

“Demanding justice is something queer people who want to get married can relate to,” she said. “2017 has a lot of sad memories for me during the time of the Marriage Equality Bill debate. I can still remember the way it felt dropping my then partner off at work and watching her pop our votes into the post box and turn around to smile at me (while I was trying not to cry).”

“I’d love to say that it was an empowering time because I am someone who is quite outspoken and I do my best to demand justice and fairness and equality but when it came to crunch time, I didn’t feel that way. I carried a lot of sadness, anger and anxiety with me.”

“As far as daily struggles go, my biggest grievance is how my identity and relationship is just not presumed and seen the same way other people’s is. This has been highlighted tenfold since becoming engaged. I’m a nurse and work with the general public all day every day. Since wearing my ring, I have not had a single person use a gender-neutral pronoun or attempt to find out who my partner is. What I have had is every variety of “lucky man!” and “did he pick the ring?”. We can brush this off as harmless ignorance but doesn’t it just highlight how gay people are Always. Coming. Out. It’s an exhausting component of what is otherwise a very exciting time in my personal life.”

salt and pepper diamond engagement ring frontside

While Chrissie and Kelly waited for their bespoke piece, they planned their engagement celebration. Kelly surprised Chrissie at the party with the ring, surrounded by red, pink, orange and yellow roses that echoed the colours of the hidden gems.

Paying homage to the game that built and strengthened their relationship, Kelly designed custom WRNS-inspired cards for each table. The last was a secret wildcard that she placed on the bouquet.

“Wildcard: Put a ring on it”.

Kelly and Chrissie - Wild card
Kelly and Chrissie wild card put a ring on it

Chrissie was smitten from the moment she saw her ring.

“I LOVE THIS RING, like I am  obsessed. I cannot stop looking at it. It’s the most beautiful thing I’ll ever own and is by far the most special and sentimental. The stones underneath have made everyone cry when we tell them what they mean and why. This is everything I didn’t realise an engagement ring stood for: a visual symbol of our everlasting love and hopes and dreams for our future together.”

It has been such an honour to craft a ring that serves as Chrissie and Kelly’s love letter to each other. As a jeweller specialising in alternative engagement rings, I also have the honour of spotlighting the beautiful people I work with. For them, jewellery isn’t about status or conforming to social norms. It’s a symbol of individuality, values and the distinct and irreplicable personalities that make a love story.

Love Kelly and Chrissie's design journey?

As a jeweller that creates for rule breakers and story makers, a good story can elevate a piece from ‘beautiful’ to ‘infinitely special’. What’s even more fun is telling that story through design, without using any words at all.

Book a call or send an email to start the conversation about your very own bespoke wedding and engagement rings.

We’ll find the sparkle in your story and turn it into a highly personalised keepsake.

salt and pepper diamond engagement ring

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