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Judge the Jewels: R&B Superstar Usher Shows His Softer Side by Wearing a Portrait Ring That Honors His Grandmother

It’s both an objectively beautiful piece of jewelry and a touching sentiment.





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The sighting: Superstar singer and king of the sexy slow jam Usher Raymond commissioned a custom portrait ring to honor his dearly departed grandmother. She would have been 84 this year, and her loving grandson posted a closeup of the ring on Instagram to commemorate the day.

The jewels: With a round, gently domed silhouette, the ring features a portrait of Usher’s grandmother surrounded by what looks like mother-of-pearl inlay and a halo of black diamonds. It was designed by Jacquie Aiche, which I know because Usher made sure to thank the jewelry designer in his post, something I always appreciate.

There is little information available about this ring online, which makes me think it really is a treasured personal piece that the singer usually keeps to himself. I could only find one mention of it anywhere, and it’s the post on Usher’s own Instagram.

Jacquie Aiche doesn’t have custom portrait rings listed as a product on her website, but the designer does offer a small collection of similarly styled rings and necklaces with flora and fauna motifs. That collection starts at $8,000 and features hand-painted designs on mother-of-pearl set in 14K gold with diamonds.

The trends: Sentimental jewelry is booming right now, as people seek comfort and closeness in a world that’s still traumatized by the turmoil of recent years. This ring is a perfect example of how that trend reaches all segments of the market, from entry level birthstone jewelry to exquisite custom pieces for A-listers.

What do we think? This is both an objectively beautiful piece of jewelry and a touching sentiment. Usher is a frequent jewelry wearer – he often appears in necklaces, lapel brooches and big blingy rings – but seeing a piece like this makes me think his affinity for jewelry is truly part of his personality, rather than a style choice he affects for public appearances.

Judgement: 16/10 for a beautiful ring and a sweet tribute from a swoon-worthy singer.

What do YOU think?




Moving Up — Not Out — with Wilkerson

Trish Parks has always wanted to be in the jewelry business and that passion has fueled her success. The original Corinth Jewelers opened in the Mississippi town of the same name in 2007. This year, Parks moved her business from its original strip mall location to a 10,000-square foot standalone store. To make room for fresh, new merchandise, she asked Wilkerson to organize a moving sale. “What I remember most about the sale is the outpouring excitement and appreciation from our customers,” says Parks. Would she recommend Wilkerson to other jewelers? “I would recommend Wilkerson because they came in, did what they were supposed to and made us all comfortable. And we met our goals.”

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