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From strangers on screens to lovers for life… When Paul and Julia met online many years ago, it didn’t take long for them to connect. Separated by the sea at first, their love story came full circle by tying the knot right in front of it at Jonah’s Whale Beach in New South Wales.

With her mum’s hand on hers as support, the bride walked down the aisle in an embellished lace dress, taking the first step towards their life together as one. Surrounded by those that matter the most, the pair celebrated their reception in an intimate circle, making each word count and every face seen.

Lovereel’s videography team was there to capture all the jokes and the reactions, the love and all its emotions. A memory to keep, and a souvenir to take home.

Ms. Tweed says: Can we stop for a moment to talk about Julia’s dress!? Absolutely stunning. I love Paul’s funny, candid and romantic wedding vows and how this intimate wedding is clearly a celebration of bringing together their families. Well done to the team at Lovereel as they showcase another beautiful wedding.

About Lovereel: With various wedding film options to choose from and all the raw footage at your fingertips, Lovereel offer an affordable yet highly professional wedding videography experience.

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The 8-Step Checklist for Buying Engagement Rings Online

Drop off dry cleaning, pick up dog food, workout, wash car, call mum, book dinner, reschedule dentist and buy an engagement ring. Nope, that’s not the checklist. That’s just today’s list… to squeeze in around eight hours of work and Game of Thrones.

Yep, life’s hectic. But what if you didn’t have to schedule in trips to five different jewellers to buy an engagement ring? What if you could do it at the gym, dentist, or car wash cafe and kill two birds with one big shiny carbon stone, right from your iPhone? Or even better…at home.

Photography by georgerudy

Buying engagement rings online isn’t a new concept, but one many couples approach with caution, and rightly so. While the benefits of online shopping are clear… added convenience, less travel and avoiding appointments with pushy salespeople… all online purchases – particularly those involving significant financial and emotional investment – require research.

Use this checklist when buying an engagement ring online to ensure you’re getting the best service, value, quality and aftercare for a memorable proposal that goes to plan.

  1. READ REVIEWS… THOROUGHLY

Reviews are a great starting point for any online purchase. A business might use crafty copy to inflate their reputation on their website, but third-party sites are designed to provide authentic, unedited feedback from real-life buyers who have purchased before.

Read jewellers’ Facebook and Google Reviews to determine customer satisfaction with all aspects of a jeweller’s products and services, particularly relating to engagement rings.

If you discover negative comments, read the jeweller’s response to see if they accept responsibility and how they process this feedback in the event that you run into post-purchase issues yourself.

Photography by bramgino

  1. CHECK INDUSTRY MEMBERSHIPS

Industry memberships are another indication of a jeweller’s credibility. In addition to GIA-certified diamonds, check if the jeweller holds memberships to other reputable industry organisations like the Jewellers’ Association of Australia and the Gemmological Association of Australia, holding them accountable to strict codes of conduct regarding quality and ethics.

Membership to the Jewellers’ Association of Australia, for example, ensures jewellers have adequate insurance cover and a clean track record of zero matters brought before a consumer affairs department.

  1. ASK ABOUT EXCHANGE & REFUNDS

Engagement rings that have been purchased online without modification should come with a 30-day exchange and refund guarantee. Ensure you’ve read the jeweller’s terms and conditions relating to return of goods and find out about any postage fees.

These guarantees give you an opportunity to see the ring in real life and experience it sparkling under various lights to ensure it’s exactly what you want. As long as the packaging and product are returned in their original condition and the ring was not altered during the ordering process, there should be no issues exchanging or refunding your engagement ring within the specified time frame.

Photography by William W. Potter

  1. REQUEST A FREE RING SIZER TOOL

One of the biggest objections to ordering an engagement ring online is not being able to physically try it on for size, so find a jeweller that offers a free ring sizer tool, which can be delivered by mail, or instantly printed at home.

With a plastic ring sizer tool, you can accurately measure the size for your engagement ring without having to go in-store. If the proposal is a surprise, match an existing ring to the sizer tool, or if your partner is involved in the buying process, have them pop a couple of rings from the plastic sheet and try each until they find a perfect fit.

  1. CHOOSE A JEWELLER THAT’S ACCESSIBLE

It’s important for online jewellers to provide multiple channels of communication to make it easy to gather all the information you need to reach a decision, fast.

Jewellers who offer a Live Chat facility on their website are typically super-responsive to customer enquiries, so if you don’t receive an instant reply, you’re likely to get answers within a couple of hours.

An email address, phone number, contact form and social media handles should also be available on their website and enquiries through any channel should take no longer than 48 hours for a response. Any longer could be an indication of lousy aftercare service, so keep this in mind when ordering online.

 

Photography by Leszek Czerwonka

  1. CHECK FOR EXTRAS

If you’ve narrowed your options down to two or three engagement rings online, but you’re struggling to pick a winner, compare the extras you receive from each jeweller…

  • Do they offer a free cleaning kit to maintain the brilliance of your ring from home?
  • Do they offer free lifetime aftercare cleaning every six months to keep your engagement ring in peak condition?
  • Do they offer a complimentary inspection service with competitively priced repairs and quick turnarounds?

If it’s a close tie between rings from different jewellers, consider these extras and what’s important post-purchase to maintain your ring structurally and aesthetically long-term.

 

Image via SH Jewellery

  1. CONFIRM SHIPPING & INSURANCE COSTS

Before getting emotionally attached, check the website’s shipping and insurance costs – if the price seems too good to be true, you might be surprised with excessive shipping fees at checkout.

Also check that insurance is included with shipping and refer to these costs when comparing jewellers. Anything more than $60 for Australia-wide secure delivery with insurance included and you can definitely find a cheaper alternative.

Photography by Voyagerix

  1. ENQUIRE ABOUT PRICE BEAT GUARANTEES

A jeweller who is confident in their pricing and the quality of their products will gladly offer a price beat guarantee, so keep this in mind if you find a similar lower-priced diamond engagement ring on another website.

If the lower-priced diamond meets your preferred jeweller’s qualifications, they should happily honour their competitor’s price without making you jump through hoops.

 

SHOP LOCAL

When you buy online with an Australian jeweller, all the standard Australian consumer laws apply, so rest assured there is legislation in place to support you in the event of any unlikely issue.

Keep in mind that when buying online from an overseas jeweller, your consumer rights may vary, and it can be difficult or costly to have your engagement ring exchanged, refunded or repaired in order to uphold warranty obligations.

Shopping online with local diamond and jewellery specialists ensures you receive dedicated support, quick repairs, easy exchanges/refunds, and your purchase is covered by standard Australian consumer legislation.

If you’re ready to buy an engagement ring online, request a free ring sizer tool and start browsing reviews to help you find a local jeweller you can trust with one of life’s most previous investments.

Ms Zebra Says: It can be daunting purchasing such an investment, especially online. However, thanks to SH Jewellery, it’s not impossible! Thanks for this great checklist to go by.

About the author SH Jewellery: As an independent jeweller, the SH Jewellery collection is exclusive to our brand, allowing us full creative freedom over the look and feel of our engagement rings and wedding bands. All our rings are designed in-house at our Springvale showroom, combining decades of design history with modern influences from across the globe.

 

If you’re considering Tasmania for your wedding there’s a strong chance you’re hoping to make the most of its infamous qualities – food, wine, scenery – at least in a small way as part of your wedding celebration. Am I right?

Tasmania is sought after for it’s beautiful untouched nature, and natural light that varies distinctively between Summer to Spring – with golden sunshine and long warm afternoons, to moody cool stormy days. The raw, untamed nature of sprawling landscapes and rugged coastlines bring about truly wondrous settings that are pure magic in your wedding photo collection. So, while there’s nothing completely new about a marquee wedding, Tasmania offers an idyllic location to consider one!

 

You can’t dispute the elegance of a classic white geometric marquee, but how about considering a Bedouin stretch tent that pairs beautifully with Tasmanian landscapes? They’re perfect for outdoor celebrations that are styled with bohemian luxury, rustic rawness, or elegant country themes at their core.

They always achieve a feeling of natural comfort and warmth, and practicality wise are designed to offer warmth when it’s cool, and cool when it’s hot (perfect for those rare but extreme Tassie days!).

These off-site, outdoor structures allow you to bring any style you dream of to any given location you can find, hence making farmland, beach sides, paddocks, backyards and vineyards all workable for hosting a quintessential Tasmanian wedding.

Many couples consider Tasmania as a destination wedding spot as they have a connection that brings them back – they lived here as a child, their families are based here, or they visited for a holiday and fell in love with the place. Regardless of your connection to the state, it is worth looking at wedding plans in Tasmania if you’re wanting something unconventional; something you can really make their own. Whether it be a highly styled soirée, or back to basics with a few well thought out personalised elements. The one thing our couples always hope for in planning an outdoor wedding, is that they offer their guests a setting that’s a world away and an outdoor wedding done well will always do this!

Image via Clint and Bethanie Photography

How do I find a place for my tent/marquee? 

The most common request for a tent or marquee weddings come from couples who have land or a venue that they can use; a family farm, paddock, or larger than average backyard somewhere in Tasmania. If this is you, that’s a great start to your planning. We’ve been fortunate enough to see some incredible properties that have views to die for, that would otherwise only be seen by crops or cows! The stretch tents are perfect for any natural surface; farm land, hillsides overlooking the ocean, or backyards, as they can be placed on undulating ground and tweaked to work around existing infrastructure.

Tasmania looks small but is still a good two-and-a-half hours between the main two cities of Launceston and Hobart. A great supplier can get you set up in-between! Some of the most remote spots offer the rarest and most unique opportunities for spectacular Tasmanian settings. So, keep this in mind if you’re great Aunt Julie has a paddock or two on offer somewhere you’ve never heard of.

HOT TIP: Be prepared to get a bit of additional infrastructure to make everything else come together!

While these options are ideal for those with a mate or family member that owns property, many Tasmanian venues have land available that marquees and tents can be placed on. Wedding venues have an idea of what marquee or tent space they have available on their property (if any), and if they do, will usually provide this in their wedding information, accompanied by a recommended list of suppliers they work with to bring infrastructure in.

While a tent or marquee is likely to come at an additional cost to any venue hire, if the venue doesn’t have a suitable indoor space that works for your vision, it’s always worth trying to negotiate logistics and a happy medium if both parties are open to it. As they say, there’s no harm in asking, and some Tasmanian wedding venues have exceptional function teams that love to help their clients do something out of the box to highlight their venues. Again, having a wedding stylist/coordinator that has a great working relationship with the venue can help here too!

Image via Melanie Kate Photography

One of Tasmania’s greatest features is accessibility. Amazing reception venues that are considered ‘out of the city’ are often in reality only 15-30 minutes away from CBD’s. This means that venues with large open spaces – fields, vineyards, paddocks, gardens – are often easy and relatively close to get to. Plans for transport, accommodation and travel are far easier to implement than you might think!

Happy planning!

Ms Zebra: If you’ve ever visited Tasmania, you can’t fault the wide open spaces and lush greenery that accompanies the view! Thanks Event Avenue for helping to forge the can-do attitude and make Tasmania a place for any outdoor wedding! 

Event Avenue is a Tasmanian-based wedding and event company who specialise in complete styling and design. Their in house capabilities encompass planning, florals, decor and furniture hire, AV and special effects. Event Avenue are known for bringing together their client’s ideas in a beautiful and original way and their versatility allows them to work with over 200 weddings and events every year.