Gimme that ring now or I'll stab you
OK, so I had griped about the hassle of having to go through a wedding here. But I admit that there are some definite up-sides to having a wedding.
One of them is having a reason to walk into all these fancy snazzy jewellers in our T-shirts and trucker caps, peer into the display cases (hands shielding our eyes of course), before we sigh and walk out of the shop in disappointment, "oh well, too bad, there's nothing we like".
I guess we knew, walking into these shops, that we would never find anything we like. But we did it anyway - a mix of curiosity, adventure and desperation.
There was Tiffany - dear me, it's so dull I wonder how Ms Golightly could finish breakfast without falling asleep! Then followed Larry, Flower, Cartier etc - places where we did not buy anything simply because it would be too crass for us to be showing our wealth. Of course. And finally, in a dark shop tucked away at the corner of the Paragon Shopping Mall, its entrance proudly displaying 3 security panels and a shop name neither of us could pronounce, we had this exchange -
Y: Hmmm... [looking at some diamonds meant actually for some pooch]
J: Hmmm... [looking at the white mod furniture in an otherwise velvety black room]
One of the salespersons exits a hidden doorway and almost walks into J. She gasps, partly from the shock of bumping into someone, and partly at finding a goateed man in T-shirt and jeans on their carpet. But composing herself quickly, she walked to the end of the room where her colleague was standing by a display case, bathed in the most precious of reflections.
Saleslady: [smiling slightly] How can I help you?
J: We're looking for rings.
SL: Oh, here we have our latest designs.
Y: Hmmm...[tiptoes to check out the rings - yes, us peasant stock are more Hobbit-like]
J: Er, not bad...but do you have other rings?
SL: Is there something in particular that's you are looking for?
J & Y: Men's rings!
SL: We have a few over here.
J: Oh. Do you have something more...elaborate?
SL: Oh no, that's all we have. Men's designs are usually more plain, like this.
J: That's the problem.
We thanked the sales assistant before sighing, "oh well, too bad, there's nothing we like."
But the other upside is not only finally finding the ring, but getting to make a new friend in the process!
a choker from argentum's spring/summer05 collection
Exasperated by our fruitless search, G recommended that we check out argentum by Singaporean designer Shing. We liked what we saw on her website so much we immediately arranged to meet her this evening at her workshop.
And we were charmed...especially J - by both the artist and her work. It was a fun 3-hour chat. She showed us her personal and commissioned work, and we got a pair of "stand-in" rings we could use for the solemnisation ceremony since it's likely she would only have the time to make us something later.
It's always good meeting folks who are not only talented, but so unassuming and open. With them, there's always something to learn, and stories to trade. And in this case, not just one, but possibly two pairs of rings to eventually come home with.
Her new website is here. But you can see some of her earlier works at this blog, and at this site.