Sometimes a huge diamond is not enough for a perfect wedding ring. Of course, romantic ladies will be crazy about a golden ring with sparkling ice, but, as they say, every man to his taste. Some girls prefer the dark side of Romanticism with an afterlife aesthetic, reverence for the creatures of the night, and the otherworldly symbolism. For such persons, the phrase ‘Till death do us part’ is imbued with a special meaning. Instead of angels, cupids, and hearts, such extraordinary personalities worship bats, crosses, and skulls. Yes, for gothic-inspired brides-to-be, the skull is not only a symbol of death, but also a signifier of the cycle of life, resurrection, and a new life. Marriage, as a symbol of the next stage in the lives of two people, is an ideal occasion to present a skull wedding ring.
Skull Jewelry in the 21st Century
The skull is one of the oldest symbols that people revered and worshiped around the globe, from the forests of Amazonia to ancient China. Skull jewelry was worn by pirates and nobles, pilots and soldiers. From the middle of the 20th century, bikers joined the ranks of skull admirers. In the 1970s, punks, rockers, and a little later, Goths adopted the skull symbolism into their attributes. In the new millennium, thanks to the efforts of fashion designers, the influence of this symbol spread to people who do not consider themselves followers of any informal subcultures.
A significant contribution to the skulls popularization was made by the famous British provocateur Damien Hirst, the author of the notorious piece of art – a platinum skull inlaid with 8601 diamonds. The largest of them (52 carats) takes pride of place on the skull’s forehead. Hirst called this work "For the love of God". The artist drew inspiration from the skull symbolism that denotes the victory over death.
Many world brands have followed the example of Damien Hirst and rolled out their out-of-the-box collections of skull jewelry for bold and extravagant people.
The Gothic collection Fiancee du Vampire by Cristian Dior was created by designer Victoire de Castellane. It showcased stylized skulls cut from large gemstones encrusted with small diamonds. The Russian jewelry brand Gourji, which crafts jewelry exclusively for men, has released gothic cufflinks with elements of the history of the Russian Empire.
The modern radical French jewelry house Akillis creates shocking yet impressive skull jewelry. In one of their last collections, the brand used such materials as titanium, genuine leather, and large gemstones. French designer Frank Montialoux crafts ‘out of the ordinary’ products emblazoned with hand-made skulls. Those are not fierce skulls we often see in biker jewelry. On the contrary, Montialoux’s skulls amusing, familiar, and lovely little figures. For example, in his collections, you can find rings with skulls resembling Charlie Chaplin and Jack Sparrow, as well as pendants and bracelets bristling with ablaze inlays.
Skull Jewelry Has Gone Down in History
As you can see, skull jewelry items are one of the main trends of the 21st century. However, skull-themed, mourning, and gloomy jewelry have been popular for a long time. In ancient Greece, thoughts of death were reflected in the ring designs. Among the most widespread motifs were skeletons, butterflies, skulls, as well as Cupid holding a torch with an extinct flame. Skulls had perhaps the most controversial meaning – they were a symbol of death and, at the same time, immortality.
Roman warriors used silver skulls as body accessories. It was believed that a skull would protect in a battle, and as a reminder of death, it would give a soldier caution, skill, and dexterity. Among the Celts, a skull considered to be a receptacle of sacred power, which protected a person and endowed him with wealth and health. In the Tibetan tradition, a skull-shaped talisman helped overcome the fear of death.
In the XVII century, thanks to the renewed interest in the art of ancient Greece and Rome, this theme took on a new meaning. Memorable rings have appeared as a result of the custom to bequeath jewelry items to relatives and friends. In Italy, rings with inscriptions in Latin became popular while in England - with the name of a beloved one and the image of a heart between two skulls. Such a tradition created a demand for rings decorated with hourglasses, skulls, as well as various quotes in Latin or English.
This jewelry style has spread over wedding rings. Particularly frequent was the phrase “Memento mori”, intended to remind the spouses of the transience of vanity and wealth. Martin Luther's wedding ring was embellished with a skull and a quote from the hymn of praise (“Think more about death: Oh death, I will be your death”).
In 1663, the court jeweler of the French king, Gilles Legare, crafted one of the most awe-inspiring rings. Skulls with bat wings crowned with laurel were placed in the setting while the band bore images of tools (shovel, pickaxe). Along with that, the most dismal was the design of a ring featuring two skeletons that formed the shank. They held a setting shaped like a coffin with a lid coming off.
However, not every skull ring should be spooky. The ring of Marie-Louise of Orleans, Queen of Spain, accommodated a skull-shaped emerald cameo with diamond eyes. Another famous skull ring with a romantic touch was made of 12 shilling coins. Its setting was decorated with flowers of pansies, a family coat of arms, a skull, and the internal engraving in Latin saying “Death is the beginning of life”.
Thus, not only skulls were a means to install fear in opponents but also guides from the world of the dead to the world of the living. As a symbol of a new beginning, a new stage in life, the skull fits perfectly into the marriage symbolism. Therefore, a skull wedding ring can easily replace traditional wedding rings… of course, if you have guts to pull it off.
How to Pick a Skull Wedding Ring
You need to keep in mind that skull rings are not just regular wedding bands, so buying tips applied to traditional jewelry pieces don’t work with these gothic-inspired items. Here are some tips to help you choose a spot on skull wedding ring.
You should pay the foremost attention to the material it is crafted of. While conventional bands are made of gold, skull-themed accessories are crafted from silver. There are several explanations for this phenomenon. First of all, silver is a mysterious metal which people endowed with healing, magical, and even mystical properties. Being prone to mysticism, the Gothic fans gravitate to this material.
Secondly, the Goths consider themselves children of the night and worship creatures visiting our world under the cover of the moon. Thus, the prevailing colors in their culture are black and silver, just like the moon against the night sky. Silver is the metal that since times immemorial has been associated with the moon and its cold light.
Apart from mysticism and symbolism, silver also has a utilitarian function. It is not as expensive as gold and platinum so every person can afford a nicely-crafted formidable skull wedding ring. Additionally, silver is a great metal to work with. It is flexible yet durable. It can be treated with blackening to add a carving or embossing more depth and definition. Its finishing can be matte or polished depending on the meaning you want to put into an item.
If you are not partial to silver but want to retain the gothic look of your skull wedding ring, you may pick an item made from other ‘white’ metals such as white gold, platinum, or rhodium-plated gold.
As worshipers of the moon, Goths reject all ‘warm’ colors. That’s why you won’t see gold in gothic jewelry. The same goes for precious stones and gems. Stones with yellow, orange, and pastel colors are a no-go. Traditional white, clear, and black gems are staples of gothic jewelry. Along with that, they love to add a pop of color to their image. For instance, they honor red stones (ruby, garnet, etc.) that symbolize blood; purple (amethysts) denote sublimity and royal nobility; green stones (emerald) may imply witchcraft. All in all, cold and deep colors are welcome in gothic jewelry.
Diamond is a symbol of hardness, boldness, and innocence. This stone gives its owner the strength and courage, and protects his / her body from injury and diseases. It was believed that diamonds give and preserve sharp hearing, protect from sorrow, witchcraft, and evil spirits. If any sorcerer wants to cast a spell on a diamond’s owner, then all the grief and misfortune will be transferred to him. A wild beast will not attack a person who wears a diamond. This stone can cure sleepwalking.
If a diamond is purchased without coercion and violence, it will preserve its wonderful power. However, if a person who wears it is unrestrained and sinful, the stone may lose its heft. Diamonds inherited from parents are extremely powerful. If you buy skull wedding rings with diamonds, they won’t start “working” immediately. You will have to "tame" them. You should wear a diamond ring when you feel happy because it has the ability to stabilize feelings and slow down the pace of time. Diamond jewelry as a gift is a symbol of love and chastity. If you give or receive a diamond ring, you promise to be faithful.
Ruby is a stone of passionate love. It also symbolizes power, strength, and energy. There is a belief that ruby can give its owner the power to control people. When buying ruby jewelry, you should consider its color - it ought to have a pure scarlet hue. If so, the stone will safeguard from ill-wishers, strengthen the sharpness of mind, and drive away depression. By changing its color, ruby warns its owner about the danger. Rubies are contraindicative to irritable people – jewelry with this stone can enhance natural cruelty and push on a rash act. On the contrary, a ruby talisman can help shy and indecisive people by raising their self-esteem and strengthening will power.
Sapphires have been esteemed since ancient times. Alexander the Great and Maria Stuart had rings with sapphires. Magnificent sapphires decorated rings of the high priests of early Christianity as evidenced by the decree of Pope Innocent III. It was believed that sapphires had healing properties and they were used in magical rituals. For instance, Avicenna advised using sapphire with eye hemorrhages to cleanse the eyes. In the Middle Ages, ulcers and plague sores were treated with this blue gem. They adorned the most famous imperial crowns. For example, the famous sapphire "Black Star of Queensland" embellishes the cross of the Imperial State Crown.
This rare stone tends to choose its own master. If a person is dishonest, cruel, and greedy, sapphire will leave him/her in one way or another. It was also believed that if you wear a sapphire ring, you will sense a lie no matter where it comes from. Looking into sapphire stone, ancient wizards received information accumulated during the day. They could see the faces of people whom you met and feel their true thoughts and intentions. Ancient people believed that if sapphire served a person, he or she had been chosen by Gods.
Emerald is a stone of heaven. It gives precise and unambiguous advice, urging a person to become better and more virtuous. It promotes a desire to accept the age-old traditions of your culture. An emerald stone is often called a talisman of luck, happiness, and prosperity. It guards its owner against sorrow and misfortune and endeavors to right the wrongs made by a person in the past. This green stone protects from a dull life, addictions, and evil spells. It gives victory over negative influences and imbues life with chastity.
Emerald possesses the utmost power if inherited or donated. Emerald is a symbol of a relentless guardian angel and it is often referred to as a signifier of the angelic world. Ancient people said it had been brought to earth but not born by it. The stone contains beryllium and this element connects it with the entire universe making it a heavenly stone. This gem can be a talisman of people who have dedicated their lives to the mysteries of the universe, who purposefully have chosen this path and found the meaning of life in spiritual perfection, sciences, and arts.
Garnet. There have long been legends about the mysterious powers of garnets. This stone is able to generate passionate desire, kindle mutual love, promote family happiness, and fulfill cherished dreams. In addition to the most common garnets, red pyropes (from the Greek pyros - fire), there are many other rarer types: clear, pink, orange, black, yellow-ish, and brown. There is also very rare natural green garnet named grossular. Sometimes it is also called the Pakistani emerald.
Scythians treated jewelry with garnets as a sign of love and affection. Crusaders honored garnets as well. They believed that during their campaigns, these stones had protected them from injury, misfortune, and betrayal.
In many countries in the Middle Ages, it became customary to give a ring with a garnet to your beloved one before a long and challenging trip. Jewelers, knowing about the sublime mission of garnets, crafted garnet jewelry with special trepidation. Garnet rings and necklaces were considered to be family heirlooms and passed down from one generation to another.
Amethyst belongs to macrocrystalline varieties of quartz and owes its violet-purple color to a dash of iron and aluminum. Since purple hue is considered one of the royal colors, Amethyst signifies power. Alluring amethysts were favorites of Catherine the Great, as well as the Egyptian kings. Amethysts are also renowned within the Christian church and considered bishop stones.
The Greek word “Amethystos” translates as “not drunk”. Greeks used this stone as an amulet to protect against intoxication. Since Amethyst was believed to be an antidote to alcoholism, many wine bowls were decorated with these purple stones. Even to this day, purple-violet amethysts are symbols of sobriety.
Onyx. A distinctive feature of onyx is its peculiar striped color. It is created by layers of the minerals that contain various impurities. The most popular type of this stone in gothic jewelry and skull wedding rings is black (Arabic) onyx.
Onyx is a very controversial stone with strong male energy. The ancient Greeks, the Aztecs, and Indians treated it as a stone for leaders and men boldly pursuing their goals. It gives an extra charge of energy and brings good luck. Onyx helped chiefs to curb their emotions, keep a cold mind, and earn the respect of their subjects. It was believed that this stone is able to take over the fears of its owner, giving him courage and determination. Hence insecure and timid people tend to wear onyx jewelry. Onyx talisman was able to drive away evil eyes and negative energy, as well as protect against accidents and enemies.
Among the peoples of the Ancient East, onyx was considered to be a stone that brought sadness and bad omens. Vessels made with inlays of black onyxes were believed to be poisonous.
According to modern esotericists, the stone is capable of accumulating and strengthening both external energy flows and the energy of its owner. Due to this ability, onyx jewelry should be worn only by good people with a positive attitude. Otherwise, the stone can turn its power against its owner.
Our Pick for Skull Wedding Rings
Although here, at Bikerringshop, we don’t have a dedicated collection of skull wedding rings, you can browse through our range to find an abundance of silver skull rings with a touch of biker altitude and masculine vibe. Here are some ideas of formidable and wondrous skull-themed rings you can give to your best half.
If you are looking for a ring that resembles a traditional wedding band but with a Gothic twist, our Diamond tribal skull gothic ring is right up your street. Its focal point is a skull with clear diamonds in his eye sockets. The band features deep carvings enhanced with blackening to add more volume and definition. A wave of smaller clear stones catches the light and adds extra attention to the piece.
Sugar rings showcase traditional skull rings in a new light. They show how beautiful and elegant skulls can be. The tradition of sugar rings came from Mexico where skulls are deeply renowned. Mexicans even celebrate the Day of the Death to pay tribute to this symbol. They bake skull-shaped sweets and adorned them with colorful glaze. Later, they started using skull-themed accessories and make-up to create a masquerade look. They adorned skulls with flowers, swirls, and jewels to make them beautiful and feminine. Being inspired by this quirky tradition, our jewelers created these Sugar Skull Rings. They feature intricate carvings, elements plated with 14K gold, as well as emerald inlays to add a dash of elegance and style. Due to the sublime design, both men and women can rock these fascinating skull rings.
This ring proudly carries a massive faceted garnet stone in the setting. The band bears no other embellishments to focus all the attention to the blazing red gem. However, if you look a little bit closer, you will see a skull hiding below the stone. The same as the skull guards the garnet, this garnet skull bone designer Gothic ring will protect you from ill-wishers and troubles. It will make a good wedding gift for a creative and bold person.
Skull wedding rings are compelling and leftfield symbols of your love. If you are looking for a skull-themed ring imbued with the Gothic vibe, then opt for an item crafted from white metals - silver, white gold, or platinum. Inlays of precious stones look especially beneficial on the background of silvery shining metal. The most popular choice for gems is red rubies and garnets, green emeralds, blue sapphires, purple amethysts, black onyx, and, of course, traditional clear diamonds. Check out our collation of biker and Gothic rings if you seek a unique skull ring that sparks interest everywhere you go.