I should start by saying that though I’ve gotten to do some fancy things in my life, I am not a fancy person.
I’m happiest when covered in sand and sea salt, preferably mid-surf session. In my ballroom/etiquette class, I was a terrible dance partner, constantly stumbling, stepping on feet, mis-executing moves. When my husband treated me to high-tea at the jaw-droppingly posh Mandarin Oriental Hotel, I spent much of the time wondering why they let me in, recalling every time I’d been elbows deep in blood or mud or sweat after a father-daughter hunt.
But I can’t lie: I’ve also retained into adulthood that little-girl desire to be a princess. I loved getting gussied up for Marine Corps Balls. And when a chance to snag custom jewelry recently arose, I’ll admit: I got a little giddy.
The whole process started when my sweet brother brought me back a handful of gems after his stint serving overseas: one black diamond and three tanzanite drops.
Holding that sparkling box of goodies, I totally felt like a princess. Or maybe a pirate with newly pilfered loot… since that better fits my pseudo-uncouth, thalassophile self. 🏴☠️
But even pirates need a place to get their gems converted into wearable jewels. In such endeavors, living in a massive metro area like D.C. can almost be a drawback. There are dozens upon dozens upon dozens of jewelry stores here. How to narrow it down?!
By God’s grace, I landed at Market Street Diamonds, a beautiful boutique in the Georgetown area. It’s one of those spots that glitters like a diamond itself, all glistening lights and sleek jewelry cases and chic white finishes. It’s the type of a place a gal like me could easily feel out of place.
But my nerves were absolutely unfounded. I was assisted by Rayna, who made it an easy, relaxing–nay, fun!–experience, offering insights that helped me refine my vision, while ensuring I knew this project was about my tastes. There wasn’t a hint of snobbery when I said I wasn’t up for funding all my projects at once. And she made sure I was completely confident in my custom design before the production process began. They provided a 3D CAD model for my review, and a wax mold into which my gem was placed, offering a glimpse of the final product. And when I went to pick up my pendant–after a speedy turnaround time of just two weeks (every piece is hand-crafted in the studio above their showroom)–even the packaging was done with lovely attention to detail.
From start to finish, top to bottom, two words summarized my experience: classy and comfortable. And the pendant itself certainly didn’t disappoint.
Since picking up my pendant, I’ve hardly taken it off. I have only one problem….
How am I supposed to have the self-discipline to wait on getting some matching earrings?
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