As those of you know, I had a rather unfortunate incident regarding the ordering of my wedding ring. Now, I’m not a bridezilla – I’ve been extremely calm through this whole process, I’ve maintained my composure because, after all, it’s just more day in our lives. Sure it’s an important one, but it’s just one day. The ring, however, has to last for a lifetime, so I wanted it to be what *I* wanted.
We ordered our rings on 16th August from a jeweller in Brisbane (EDIT – I have removed the name of the jeweller based on advice receied from a few people that I could get into legal trouble for naming and shaming them). Two and a half months out, so plenty of time, or so I thought. My ring wasn’t something they had readily available and it would need to be made – white gold with three dark Australia sapphires (my favourite stone) set into the band in line with the stones on my engagement ring. We were lucky that they already had his ring in stock and in his size, so we were just waiting on mine. I was told it would be three weeks before my ring would be ready. As part of their “deal”, we each got a free titanium ring in the same size as the rings we ordered. I say that we’ll just pick all the rings up at the same time. We pay up front, then and there – BIGGEST mistake I could’ve made.
Fast forward three weeks – 6th September. I’m at Tech.Ed so haven’t really been paying attention to the dates and totally forgot the rings were supposed to be ready. On the following Friday, I realise that I haven’t got a call telling to come and get the rings. So I call. I’m told there’s a hold up and that I’ll have to wait a bit longer but they’ll be ready.
Five weeks and call. I’m told the ring has *finally* made it back to their showroom to be fitted with the sapphires I’d requested. It should be ready by this time next week.
I call up exactly a week later (27th September) and am told the rings are finally ready for collection and to head on it. I’m extremely excited, as this is the last major purchase that we needed to do before the wedding. So I show up to collect the rings at about 3:30pm. They show me the titanium rings (for the record, titanium rings are insanely light, they feel almost like plastic, it’s somewhat scary) and then they show me his ring, which is lovely. His ring is chrome cobalt – the same metal used in artificial joints and limbs. It’s extremely strong but with a blue sheen to it that looks very different from other metals. Then they show me my ring.
My ring…with it’s exceptionally pale blue sapphires.
Now, to give you some indication of what I was after originally, I direct you to this lovely website I found which shows, in detail, the differences in sapphire colour
The colour I was after (and even showed the woman, as I was wearing silver & sapphire rings the day we ordered) was anything from a Medium Very Dark to a Vivid very Dark. In other words. VERY DARK. The colour that was set in my ring? Fair Very Light.
At this point, I’d like you all to note that I maintained my composure extremely well when this happened. I did not cry. I did not yell. I calmly looked at her and said “Those are not the stones I ordered”. She mutters a bit and wanders out the back to speak to someone else. I can hear part of what was said including “Well, those were the darkest sapphires the jeweller had on hand”. My thoughts went “Well, then he should’ve ordered other ones in, shouldn’t he?!”. The lady comes back out and says that they’ll have to wait for the jeweller to come back before they can do anything about getting it fixed. They say that he’ll definitely be back by 5pm and that they’ll call.
Still haven’t cried, yelled or grievously injured anyone yet. So far, so good.
I take the rings they’ve got (which is stupid…I could’ve done that SIX FUCKING WEEKS AGO) and say that I’ll wait for their phone call.
I get outside…and totally lose my shit. That’s the only way to describe the torrent of emotions that hit. I was totally fucking devastated. I’d trusted these guys with a (in my eyes) fairly simple order and not only had they managed to blow out the deadline by 100% they’d managed to screw the order up in the process. Not. Happy.
So I stand there, crying like a total idiot, and call Alex. Who tries to calm me down. And fails. Props to him for trying though.
I get off the phone to him and get into my car. Close the door. And scream. I mean REALLY scream. I screamed so hard I made my rear-view mirror shake. *THAT* is how angry I was at this whole situation.
I don’t remember driving home. I think that scares me a bit, to know that I was that angry, that emotionally screwed up, that I didn’t remember getting from Newmarket to Arana Hills. In peak hour, too. Called Mum. More attempts to calm me down. Still no luck. Finally get a call from the jewellery store.
They won’t need to remake the ring, they’ll just need to replace the stones – that’s the good news. It means I won’t have to wait for a new ring to be crafted. Thank fuck. The jeweller hasn’t got time to look through his current stone collection right now, but they’ll call me in the morning to let me know whether they have the stones available or will need to get them in. They’ll call me by midday.
To ensure that they don’t screw up again, I go online searching for dark sapphires and stumble across a site with a number of dark sapphire rings (this site) to show them as an example of what I was talking about, as well as the site I linked earlier describing the colour of sapphires. In the email, I mentioned what I wanted – Medium Very Dark, Strong Very Dark or Vivid Very Dark. VERY DARK SAPPHIRES. Knowing that I’ve done all I can, I decide to go to bed.
The next day, they call with 12 minutes to spare. They don’t have the stones in, they’ll have to order them in, they’ve already ordered them from their supplier in Brisbane and as soon as they arrive, both the ring and my stones will be whisked off to where they set the stones. I’m told it will be Wednesday, at the very latest, for it to be ready.
At this point in time, I’d like to point out a white lie I told these people, one which I’m very glad I did. And this is a hint for other brides-to-be. I lied about our wedding date. I said I needed these rings for this Thursday as we were getting married this weekend. Thank the gods I did, or I probably *still* wouldn’t have my ring.
The woman I’m talking with (as I’m yet to ever speak to the jeweller directly) tells me that it’s okay, thanks me for the email I sent (which makes me relieved that someone had received it!) and to tell me it’ll be ready in time. Then she laughs a little and says it’s quite funny as they originally “misplaced” my order.
Holy shit, I swear I literally saw red.
They LOST my order. The reason it took so long, the reason they fucked up the stones, was because they LOST my freakin’ order. Misplaced, in my eyes, is a convenient term for lost. Or forgotten. But if it was forgotten, you’d think they’d at least be able to get the details right…
I bit my tongue because, at this point, all I wanted was my ring. Once I had my ring, *THEN* I could say what I wanted to say…which is what this blog post is all about.
I went and collected my ring today. I now have it in my hot little hands. It has a valuation certificate with it. I’m still going to go off next week, to a jeweller I trust, to get it valued again to ensure they ARE dark Australian sapphires set in my ring. I did want to say something to the woman at the time, but I saw no point. They weren’t offering any reduction in cost (when I asked in my email, I was told that the sapphires they’d originally put in were FAR more expensive than the ones that were in the ring I had originally asked for) and they pretty much showed no remorse. There was no apology today – no “Sorry it took so long, sorry we fucked up, sorry we didn’t tell you we lost your order”. I walked out, knowing I would never be back.
And so, to let it all out and to ensure people don’t make the same mistake I did, I wrote this!
I’m sure there are people who have had good experiences. I’m happy for them. I’m glad they had a good experience and got what they wanted. I, sadly, was not one of them – and I don’t want anyone else to go through what I went through.
So, a few “learnings” from this whole experience:
- In my opinion, I won’t ever order from this jeweller again (EDIT – I have removed the name of the jeweller based on advice receied from a few people that I could get into legal trouble for naming and shaming them) – I’m sure some people have had good experiences. I certainly haven’t. I won’t be going back. I wouldn’t recommend them to family or friends. The way I was treated was exceedingly poor. If they’d just told me, up front, that they’d lost my order and could I please provide them the details again, then none of this wouldn’t have happened. But instead, they chose to cover their own arse. That just doesn’t wash with me. That’s bad business practice and that shows they couldn’t give two shits about their customers.
- If you need something from a jeweller by a specific date, LIE. Get it early. If you need it by mid March, say you need it by the end of February. If you need something by Christmas, tell them you need it by the end of November. I’m so *so* pleased I lied about the date, because if I hadn’t, I’m sure I would still be waiting on getting my ring.
- DO NOT pay up front. I learnt this the hard way. They already had my money. They could screw me around as much as they wanted. Next time, I’ll be a bit more wary and only put down the minimum deposit. If the ring hadn’t turned out the way I want, and if the new valuation I get turns out to be incorrect, I’ll be getting a charge back on my credit card for it. I’ll also be speaking with the Office of Fair Trading, if my valuation certificate proves to be false…which I’m really, really, really hoping it won’t.
- Lastly, don’t trust online reviews. I’d heard good things about this place through things I’d read online – not through trusted friends or family. That was an extremely stupid mistake on my part and means that I’ll be a hell of a lot more choosy next time it comes to something like this. The saying “Don’t trust anything you read online” rings true.
That really sucks Jess, i know when i was looking for an engagement ring for my ex, it was almost impossible to find something in white gold with sapphire so custom was really the only way to go. in the end i found something pre made. after speaking to 10 or so jewelers about making a custom ring they varied so greatly in price but i ended up finding a place that did the rings minus the stones and i was all set to order the stones individually.i think if i go through the process again that is definetly the way i would go.