Tag Archives: ring



Boo—hiss—-!  The Korean Customs Office is on my official hate list.

Why?  Well, if you seen my post regarding our wedding rings, you know that they’re a bit unusual, and not something I was likely to find in Korea.  So we ordered them online from the US-based company Titanium-Jewelry.com.  They’ve been great to work with—I’ve been in contact with the same customer service guy since last October.  I was really looking forward to having our rings in time for our Korean ceremony this Saturday (How time FLIES!!!).  Even though there is no official ring exchange in a traditional Korean ceremony, Yoongu and I would have donned our rings before the ceremony.

Last week, we get a notice from the Korean customs office notifying us that the rings have arrived, but that they cannot release the rings for continued shipment to our home address because they have determined that taxes must be charged.

We were afraid of this.  Many times, international packages can just go through.  I’ve Internet-shopped before without problems….until now.  That’s because the Korean government is thinking KA-CHING! since we bought the rings for a little over $3,000.  Okay, we brace ourselves for the worse—maybe $300-400, i.e. about 10% of the rings value?  The customs official says that he doesn’t have an exact number yet, but will call us as soon as he does.  In the meantime, we keep reassuring him that the rings are just for personal use, and NOT for resale.  We have no affiliation with the jewelry industry.  Silly us for thinking that would help…because we got a call of DOOM the next day.

They did not ask for a number that was anywhere close to what we had expected.  Those highway robbers wanted friggin’ close to $1300.00 in taxes!  Yeah, you read that right, and the decimal is in the right place: OVER ONE GRAND!  We’re thinking this is absolutely INSANE!  30% tax on a single package???!!!

Sigh, once we got over our shock, we realized that the only sensible thing to do is to NOT pay the tax, let the shipment be returned to the sender, and try to have Titanium-Jewelry.com mail it to us in the United States when we head there later this month for our US-based wedding reception.  Truly a big disappointment, but the ring company has been very understanding since they’ve waived reshipping charges since this was out of our control.  Sigh!

If you have a printer, feel free to do as I plan to and print the above logo and burn it!  Grrr!

Wedding Rings Ordered!

We finally ordered our rings yesterday. It took awhile, because I was having an ongoing dialogue with Titanium-Jewelry.com about a customized ring that I wanted.
Initally, I had planned on having a lab-grown diamond. Lab-grown diamonds are still real diamonds, they’re just not mined out of the ground. Also, lab-grown diamonds are generally colored diamonds, and I was interested in this Sky Blue diamond from Gemesis:
However, I’ve gotta give Gemesis two thumbs down in customer service based on my own experience. On the other hand, Titanium-Jewelry.com has been great: Scott from Titanium-Jewelry.com was very diligent in contacting Gemesis directly and opening an account with them, and requesting the diamond I wanted for my ring. But then Gemesis said that they were out of Sky Blue diamonds, and that they wouldn’t make any for less than 1 carat–even though that is NOT what their own website says. According to their own website, Gemesis offers Sky Blue diamonds from .2 carats to .75 carats. I called Gemesis myself to inquire about this discrepancy, and I couldn’t get a human on the phone to save my life. I’ve also emailed them, but have gotten no response. Poo poo to them!
Anyhoo, I’ve decided to just go with a regular white diamond, especially since it’s a tension setting (i.e. no prongs) and cannot accommodate a diamond larger than about .5 carats without compromising the security of the setting–so here it is:

Here is a video link if you want a 360 view of the ring. I love how the diamond is flush against the ring, which should keep it from catching on stuff. Also, since it’s held in place by tension instead of prongs, you can pretty much see the entire diamond.
As you can guess from the name of the store, the ring is made of titanium, which is the strongest and most durable metal for tension settings–more secure than a white gold or platinum setting. It’s also incredibly lightweight, which is great since I work a lot with my hands.
I know this looks more like an engagement ring, but Yoongu and I didn’t really have a traditional engagement, so I plan to wear this as my wedding band.

Yoongu’s wedding ring is also pretty unusual: it’s made from tungsten carbide, and the middle design is made with a white gold/palladium alloy and silver. Tungsten is the only rare and exotic metal that can be permanently polished because it has Mohs rating of about 8 or 9 (Diamonds are 10). That means its 10 times harder than 18K Gold, 5 times harder than tool steel, and 4 times harder than titanium and virtually scratch-proof. Such a heavy-duty substance seemed like a good idea since Yoongu’s always working with power-tools and lumber when he’s building houses.

I just love the way the middle part looks like wood! What a fitting design for a carpenter~~~
These are being shipped directly to us here in Korea in about 2-3 weeks—I can’t wait!