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This Utah company makes Lord of the Rings wedding bands for men

When ladies stroll into a jewellery retailer, says Michelle Luchese, they have a tendency to “get the purple carpet rolled out.”

However when she and then-fiancé John Ruggiero went searching for his wedding ceremony ring, Ruggiero stated he heard one thing like, “There’s a bit desk in the back of the shop, have a look at these.”

He often solely noticed three or 4 rings, all of which he typically thought of unaffordable – and none that match his giant fingers.

“I say, ‘That is my wedding ceremony ring,'” Ruggiero stated. “I am imagined to put on this for the remainder of my life. Should not I be a bit excited? And as a substitute it was simply an enormous trouble.”

This expertise impressed the newlyweds to start out their firm, Manly Bands, out of their Rosemary Seaside, Florida storage in 2016.

Right now, having relocated to Utah, Manly Bands gives males’s rings in tungsten, wooden from whiskey and wine casks, antlers, carbon fiber, meteorites and even dinosaur bones. In a army historical past collection, they made steel rings from the decommissioned plane provider USS Kitty Hawk, a Sherman tank and elements of M1 Garand rifles.

“It is cool to look at guys join with one thing aside from a conventional gold or silver and white gold band,” Ruggiero stated. “They actually appear to need one thing that matches their persona greater than the normal designs.”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Johnathan Ruggiero and Michelle Luchese, Founders and Co-CEOs of Manly Bands in Lindon.

The corporate has model strains with rings impressed by Jack Daniels, Fender guitars – some with embedded guitar strings – and DC Comics.

Then, earlier this 12 months, the corporate felt drawn to sure energy rings.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) A Batman impressed ring design at Manly Bands in Lindon.

A hoop to bind them

When Ruggiero heard that Amazon Studios was planning a brand new TV collection prequel to The Lord of the Rings, he reached out to Warner Bros. “We requested them, ‘Hey, we might love to do The One Ring,'” he stated.

Warner Bros. responded that it could not affiliate the corporate with the tv present, however it does comply with license rings from the trilogy of books and unique movies, Ruggiero stated.

Manly Band designers started brainstorming concepts for the gathering again in March. “We’re actually attempting to make it enjoyable…lots of people on the group love Lord of the Rings,” Ruggiero stated.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) A Lord of the Rings impressed ring design at Manly Bands in Lindon on 5 December 2022.

Of the 9 rings made, The Gandalf, The Frodo, The Aragorn, The Legolas and The Gimli are primarily based on characters that make up the Fellowship of the Ring – looking for to destroy the ever-corrupting One Ring created by the Darkish Lord Sauron.

The corporate additionally crafts rings for Sauron, the Ringwraiths – corrupt males who perform his bidding – and Gollum, who was possessed to the purpose of homicide by the One Ring as a way to receive it.

And, arguably a terrifying alternative for a marriage, the One Ring itself, an evil band of gold that empowers the wearer to manage others “and bind them in darkness.”

Every ring is comprised of a special materials – for instance, The Frodo incorporates moss encased in epoxy resin. The gimli options the sample seen on the dwarf’s helmet within the films. The Legolas has an embedded recurve bowstring and the Sauron incorporates lava rock.

Warner Bros. needed to approve each single design earlier than launch a couple of month in the past. Since then, The Lord of the Rings collection has been “tremendous profitable for us,” Ruggiero stated. “It is considered one of our greatest sellers.”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) A Lord of the Rings impressed ring design at Manly Bands in Lindon on 5 December 2022.

Kaelin Douglas, who lives in Fort Price, Texas, ordered her associate’s wedding ceremony ring to Gimli.

“My fiancé complained about different decisions and the way boring the choices have been. Principally easy gold or black bands,” Douglas stated, “whereas there is a world of various customizations and flashes for ladies.”

She favored the Gimli design as a result of “it is sufficiently subtle that nobody however a fan would spot it at first look” however was nonetheless intricate and seemed that “they did their analysis on the characters,” stated you.

“My fiancé is a big Lord of the Rings fan,” she stated, “and we needed a marriage ring that included that with out being too overt about what it’s.”

“Who will purchase the groom’s ring?”

Manly Band’s head workplace and manufacturing facility is in Lindon, which employs roughly 65 folks.

Your staff machine rings made from supplies which might be tougher than valuable metals, akin to tungsten and Damascus metal. Wooden or wood-inlaid rings are carved on a lathe, and a few rings are coated with Cerakote, a troublesome ceramic coating used to color weapons and plane elements.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Dave Suraez works on a hoop at Manly Bands in Lindon on December 5, 2022.

Most rings within the best-selling class vary in value from $300 to $1,000, and the corporate makes a variety of sizes.

Manly Bands opened two retail shops final 12 months, one final February at College Place in Orem and one in September at Vogue Place in Murray, stated Eric Farlow, the corporate’s chief working officer.

However the firm nonetheless sees most of its purchases on-line, the place it began promoting.

As a result of some persons are reluctant to spend a whole lot on a hoop they cannot see, “we invested lots in creating content material,” Ruggiero stated, to indicate the merchandise up shut and clarify the variations between the supplies.

“We do quite a lot of YouTube content material. We assist folks be taught extra about rings, wedding ceremony bands and males’s wedding ceremony bands, we speak concerning the completely different supplies, the completely different kinds and why they need to purchase from us,” he stated.

In these movies, usually set in opposition to a backdrop of sports activities gear, whiskey bottles, and gaming gear, firm representatives present close-ups of rings, evaluate their composition (“execs and cons of wood rings”), and talk about wedding ceremony points.

“Who Buys the Groom’s Ring?” delves into ring historical past—American males did not begin carrying wedding ceremony bands till the Nineteen Forties—and “WTF Did They Put On Their Ring?” bands have requested. (Examples embody “I am in for the intercourse,” “No extra weight-reduction plan for me,” “Flip me again on,” and “Do not lose these,” and on the sweeter facet: “Girl’s B-Day” with date and “But two needs left.”)

Manly Bands plans to quickly make rings from a Nineteen Forties Willys Jeep fender and scrap steel – with genuine harm – from a B-17 bomber.

Designing rings is “a enjoyable problem,” Luchese stated, whereas with every new venture they ask, “How can we be completely different, higher, extra fascinating, extra revolutionary?”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Jeep elements to be used in rings at Manly Bands in Lindon on December 5, 2022.

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