Custom wedding rings and bands are becoming so popular for both men and women, and one Minnesota jeweler has a ring for every bride or groom.
Jewelry by Johan is now run by Johan’s daughter, Leanne, who we spoke to about all of the different types of custom wedding rings they create for clients. Read on to discover the wide variety of materials you never even thought of to use in rings, and what’s trending in wedding jewelry now.
Q: Let’s get to it, what’s your business’ specialty?
A: Handcrafted, unique wedding jewelry.
Q: Where can we find you?
A: Our 10,000 square foot design center and manufacturing facility is located in Oakdale, Minnesota.
Q: Tell us when and how your business began.
A: Jewelry by Johan got its start as an Etsy shop selling simple wood bands in 2008 and Johan was making the rings in his garage.
Q: What makes your company unique from others?
A: We handcraft everything personally and can modify all of our items. Or, create completely custom designs. We also use natural materials, including meteorite, antler, fossil, and a variety of hardwoods.
Q: How long have you been in the industry? What do you think has changed the most since then?
A: Officially, since 2010 and the biggest change is the dramatic increase in competition for men’s alternative wedding bands, especially from online resellers of poor quality, mass-produced rings.
Q: Walk us through your average workday.
A: Busy and exciting. Every day we receive a seemingly endless stream of calls, emails, and website chats from people around the world. And, our Oakdale-based design center is open for shopping (by appointment only) and free design consultations with safety measures in place.
Q: What would you want couples searching for wedding jewelry to know?
A: If your priority is finding an heirloom-quality piece of jewelry meant to last, shop small and local.
Q: How far in advance should a couple purchase their wedding rings?
A: Because most of our rings are made-to-order, I’d suggest 3 months before the big day. Then, you’re not rushed and can find or create your perfect design. Our current turn-around time is 2-5 weeks, dependent on materials and design complexity. We do have ready to ship rings that ship within 1-3 days but design and size availability is much more limited.
Q: What’s your favorite wedding jewelry trend lately?
A: Personalization! More and more brides and grooms are getting creative and incorporating their interests and personality into their rings. For example, we’ve made guitar string rings for musicians, antler rings for hunters (crafted with their provided antlers), a double-helix ring for a scientist and so many more. Rings aren’t just rings, their personal works of art!
Q: What’s your best piece of advice for someone looking to purchase an engagement ring for their partner?
A: Be a sleuth and try to get an idea of their preferred styles before purchasing. You can still retain the element of surprise if you can catch their not-so-subtle hints, or ask a friend or family member for their insights. OR, we’ve seen an increase in couples who collaborate to design the perfect ring, but they still keep the proposal a complete surprise.
Q: Do you have any favorite podcasts or books?
A: The thing about Pam
Q: Heels or flats?
Q: Mountains or Beach?
Q: Go-to cocktail (or mocktail)?
A: Flavored Vodka and soda water
Q: When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: My daughter just asked me this yesterday, and I never did have a career specifically that I wanted to work in.
Q: You’re at brunch. Are you going for something sweet or savory?
A: Both. I like to have a balance of sweet and savory.
Q: Go-to comfort food?
Q: Duck Duck Grey Duck or Duck Duck Goose?
A: Duck Duck Grey Duck