A Union of Beauty and Brilliance2021 Jul, 01
A bespoke opal engagement ring by Opal Minded is quite simply a cut above the rest
You’re unlikely to find a jewellery house more dedicated to their craft than Opal Minded.
In operation since 1989, Opal Minded has been procuring and setting some of Australia’s most sublime opals to adorn women who have an appreciation for rare and unique designs.
The entirety of Opal Minded’s collection is overseen by Renata Bernard, its Sydney-based head designer and Creative Director, who has designed many extraordinary opal heirloom pieces worn and adored worldwide. She is also an experienced gemmologist and accredited gemstone valuer with an intimate understanding of the broader world of precious gemstones.
You have an opportunity to work directly with Renata to create your dream opal engagement ring, either in person or remotely and within your budget.
Whether you and your partner are both involved in the collaboration process or you plan on surprising your loved one with an opal engagement ring, Renata will ensure that the final result is nothing less than exceptional.
Collaborating with an opal artisan
Renata has an extraordinary talent for revealing an opal’s raw and innate beauty. Her approach is to intuitively let the opal’s natural form guide her creative process.
“We can start with a rough opal from our opal mines and have it shaped, imagined and beautifully crafted into anything our client’s soul desires.” – Renata Bernard
For Renata, each bespoke creation must be 100 percent perfect for the client. Her mantra is “nothing less than the best will do”.
Why choose an opal engagement ring?
By its very nature, an opal gemstone is symbolic of lasting love and loyalty. It is the ultimate gemstone to signify a romantic and momentous milestone.
“For those in the know, a good quality opal is at the top of their connoisseur list.” – Renata Bernard
Renata has recently witnessed a gentle migration away from people selecting the more traditional gemstones for their engagement ring.
The synthetic gemstone industry has increased in sophistication over recent years, leading to a growing mistrust of gem authenticity.
In comparison, there is minimal synthetic opal production, and they remain a true masterpiece of nature. Opals are also much rarer than diamonds and other popular gemstones such as rubies, emeralds, and sapphires.
Opal mining usually takes place on a very small scale, resulting in minimal land damage combined with a strong focus on land rehabilitation. Small-scale opal mining allows for an integrated ethical and sustainable approach.
Read more about Opal Minded’s environmental ethos here.
The bespoke process
Whether you’re coming to Opal Minded with a crystal-clear design vision or no idea at all, Renata will guide you seamlessly throughout the bespoke journey.
If you already have a wedding band concept in mind, bring this along to your first meeting.
“Designing a piece of opal jewellery from the start is almost like a dating service with 100% certainty that we can find a perfect opal jewellery soulmate.” – Renata Bernard
Your first meeting is to discuss your favourite design concepts, metal preferences and any practical requirements you might have. Renata has a wealth of knowledge on the virtues of precious metals and ways to enhance the chosen opal if you wish to include any additional gemstones.
Renata loves getting to know a couple’s origin story, and where possible, she will incorporate those unique elements into the design.
Choosing your Australian precious opal
Renata will chat with you about your ideal opal characteristics – colours, shapes and opal origin. The natural state of opal will often inform what design is possible. Renata will tailor the engagement ring towards your budget and design preferences. She is known to get creative when working within a defined budget.
Renata insists that a wearer does not choose an opal, but rather it is the opal that chooses them. She likens this phenomenon to “love at first sight.”
A piece of opal in its raw and natural state is like a slice of the sublime awaiting a magnificent fate.
You will have the opportunity to view and select one of Opal Minded’s impressive natural untreated opals, many from their own Judah-Opalville mine. Renata will then sketch two to three design ideas by hand, incorporating your chosen opal and favourite design elements.
Bringing your vision to life
Once the winning design is selected, if necessary, the opal may be modelled on another ring to see how it looks and feels when worn. All elements, including the price, are approved in writing before the manufacturing process begins. In some cases, if the project is more complicated, Opal Minded will create a wax model of the design to allow for better visualisation.
Typically, the complete bespoke service from design conception to ring completion requires no less than two meetings and no more than five. Renata has also completed much-loved opal pieces just by correspondence that have been delivered all over the globe.
All manufacturing takes place locally in Sydney. If you need to propose urgently, then Opal Minded can achieve an impressively quick seven to ten-day turnaround.
The grand unveiling is one of Renata’s favourite moments in the bespoke process. Seeing photographs of the engagement ring after it has been slipped on for the first time is “pure joy”.
Opal Minded opal engagement rings come with a complimentary certified guarantee that no one else in the world will have the same gemstone. They are truly a unique expression of love.
Give your future fiancé the easiest reason to say yes
Opal Minded provides a lifetime care policy for all bespoke pieces and offers international buyers worldwide insured free shipping.
Fall in love with our opals. We will take care of the rest.