Long considered a harbinger of bad luck, Friday the 13th has inspired a large horror film franchise and two terms for fears of this unlucky day: paraskavedekatriaphobia and friggatriskaidekaphobia. More than 95% of people can't say those terms without practice and more than 80% of hi-rise buildings in the United States avoid the number 13 entirely by not having a 13th floor or rooms marked 13. While Friday the 13th is considered an ominous and unlucky day for many, this couple celebrates every Friday the 13th that comes along because it was a Friday the 13th that brought them together for a first date.
My cousin, Sarah, and her fiancé, Travis, went to rival high schools in Richmond, Virginia, but they didn't cross paths until decades later on the other side of the country. When she and I went on a cousin's adventure only a few weeks after they met, there was something different about how Sarah spoke about Travis. While we skidded down the side of a mountain in a CRV on a road marked "4-wheel drive vehicles only", she was calm, confident, and completely a-glow as she recounted quirky bits of their conversation and things she had learned about him over their short time together--well, as calm and confident as one can be while being hurled down a mountain dotted with granite boulders in a rental car...
My cousin Sarah leads an active lifestyle and our adventure in Joshua Tree only scratches the surface. It is not uncommon to find her swinging a sledge hammer at a wall that cramps a space, pulling down cabinets with her bare hands in one of her home renovation projects, or hoisting a sail in a far off body of water. She grew up mucking barns for her horse and enjoys hiking to the peaks of mountains, scrambling up rocks and craggy surfaces, and pouring cement. Despite this, I have a very distinct memory of sitting on her bed at age 9, looking up at her ribbons and trophies from riding, and thinking she had the most beautiful fingernails and nail beds (The things we remember...).
For her engagement ring, we needed to make something that matched her adventurous lifestyle and complemented her beautiful hands. The ring would need to be durable, casual, yet meaningful, sustainable and as sparkly as the light she emits when talking about Travis. She didn't want something that was a big blingy piece of jewelry, overly traditional, or expected--And what we landed on is something truly Sarah.
This custom ring features a central 1.32-carat rectangular radiant cut Montana Sapphire in a rich blue-green hue. Montana Sapphires are guaranteed to be sourced with safe working conditions and environmentally responsible principles. The Sapphire was cut by renowned gemstone artist John Dyer. Dyer is a master gem cutter who is celebrated for his artistic ability. He is the recipient of over 50 elite gem-cutting awards, including a multi time winner of the AGTA Spectrum Awards. Every John Dyer gemstone is a unique work of art. Dyer studies each piece of gemstone rough individually to determine the best way to maximize the gem's beauty and brilliance. He releases the hidden allure of each gem through innovative, proprietary cutting styles.
This Montana Sapphire is set East-West, symbolizing the East to West Coast moves Sarah and Travis made to ultimately meet so far away from their hometown of Richmond. The sapphire is held in a beveled bookend setting that hugs the sides with geometric walls of 18k recycled gold. To draw attention to these bookends of gold, we have set two baguette diamonds vertically, creating a step down to the band.
The band has ten baguettes burnished into the surface of the buttery gold--protecting the sparkle from the elements and adventures Sarah and Travis will have together. There is a total of 0.36-carats of diamonds in the ring. But, the element that is so special and personal: Travis decided to include hand-engraving on the inside of the ring.
In a formal cursive scrawl, "Fri 13" anchors the ring, marking a date that they will always refuse to believe is unlucky. Friday the 13th is the luckiest day and one they will always celebrate as the moment that brought them together--fitting for the ring that will tie them together in the promise of future.
Sending love to my cousin Sarah and my future-cousin Travis as you celebrate your engagement!