Plus Size Wedding Rings – Lessons in Getting it Wrong

Posted by Kelsey Juszczak on Sep 20th 2021

Plus Size Wedding Rings – Lessons in Getting it Wrong

From a same-sex wedding band line to a plus size exclusive brand - the journey to where we are today has been full of both successes and flops. But with every lesson in getting it wrong, we learned and grew and have been able to continue offering our couples a modern, accessible approach to fine bridal jewelry.

A Modern Jeweler for the Modern Couple

In 2009, our sister brand, My Trio Rings, was born in an industry-trailblazing move that brought fine jewelry to eCommerce with no brick-and-mortar storefronts. Although this approach benefitted our couples by being able to bring quality wedding ring sets for a fraction of the prices charged by retail stores, it didn’t come without its struggles. In an online-only environment, our team was constantly working on improving our media, building features to help shop our collections, and assembling the best concierge team to fulfill the needs of our couples virtually. Reflecting on the last twelve years, it’s clear that our couples’ feedback and stories have been instrumental to our journey and where we’ve reached today.

My Trio Rings brought about a modern approach to ring shopping, making quality jewelry more accessible for hardworking couples from all walks of life. However, we quickly realized that there was room to make the wedding ring industry more inclusive beyond just affordability.

Inclusivity in Wedding Ring Sets

In 2013, state courts across the nation were hearing arguments in favor of legalizing gay marriage. For same-sex couples looking to symbolize their marriage, matching wedding ring sets were the perfect way to celebrate their union. In 2013, we launched the first ever same-sex wedding jewelry line.

A few years later, we received a call that touched our hearts, but opened our eyes to an under-representation far greater than we realized. When wrapping up a call with a same-sex couple, one of the partners broke down and expressed relief:

“You know, I’m from Texas, and over here there wasn’t much of a welcoming when we would approach jewelers to help us find wedding rings. Beyond that, I’m plus size and in their eyes, I was fat and gay, and not what they wanted to work with. When working with you [Yana, our couples champion], you didn’t treat me any different because I was seeking two men’s rings, and you didn’t flinch in your care and attention when we shared our sizes with you.”

While a very personal win for our team in serving same-sex couples, it was a wake up call that we had to do better with serving plus size couples who were, incredibly, still not being served the same as any other couple.

So, in 2017, we proudly launched the first ever plus size wedding ring collection dubbed, The Full Brilliance Collection. Over the subsequent years, we served thousands of couples with styles from this collection, but the feedback was starting to form a picture that our well-intentioned efforts were overlooking their needs.

Good Intentions, Bad Execution

While My Trio Rings brought affordable, quality wedding ring sets to our couples, our focus on affordable pricing limited what we could offer in the Full Brilliance Collection. Our modern approach focusing greatly on unique and original designs wasn’t what plus size brides and grooms were looking for. They were more often searching for timeless classics that they had always dreamed of, but re-imagined for how they should look on a larger finger.

We were proud to offer an exclusively plus size wedding ring line, but quickly realized that offering the sizes wasn’t enough. We started hearing stories of couples not even being able to get sized, let alone find their dream rings. This made us realize we had barely scratched the surface in serving these under-represented couples. This feedback, along with countless other stories from couples, led us to the conclusion that if we were going to do plus size right, we needed a whole new approach.

A More Authentic Approach to Plus Size Wedding Rings

We knew that in order to truly serve plus size right, we had to build an entirely new company around the ideals that would truly serve plus-size couples.

Our first step was to take the data we had collected from couples and use that to inform a whole new product development process tailored specifically for plus size wedding rings:

A dedicated team: We started by building a team of experienced designers and merchandisers, many of whom identify as plus size. We worked exclusively with a single crafting facility and focused on each design and its strengths and how they would be best re-imagined to a standard women’s ring size 12 and up.

Redefining standard: As of 2021, much of new style development in the crafting facilities that supply major retailers in the United States is done in a “standard ring size” 7.5, an archaic standard that hasn’t been accountable by modern brides. By setting Mabel & Main’s style development to size 12, we were able to answer to natural design questions that arise when you have more material that must be accounted for in how the design should look.

Couples’ Feedback: We gathered stories and feedback from the couples who purchased from My Trio Ring’s Full Brilliance Collection to find brides were seeking a different design style and quality than what we offered on My Trio Rings, and while trying to serve plus size and affordability requirements, we were unable to do both as well as we should have. So, we made all of Mable & Main’s designs nickel-free and selected even higher grade diamonds than our sister brand could offer.

A smoother experience: Couples often shared that their shopping experience often felt degrading or discounted in person. In fact, what stood out as a common theme was the inability to even get sized for ring sizes over size 12. One of our couples ended up finally getting sized at a gun show after trying for weeks at brick-and-mortar fine jewelry stores. And so, we designed our own ring sizer that goes up to size 24, which can even be delivered to your doorstep, free of charge

Once we had these building blocks in place, we were ready to truly enter the plus size wedding ring space.

Disrupting an Industry

We aren’t afraid to show our mistakes, and we are even more proud to show what we learned from those mistakes. We are empowered by the lessons where we didn’t quite hit the mark, but with hard work and perseverance, we created Mabel & Main to break the mold and bring representation to those who are underrepresented in the wedding jewelry space. We are excited to have you on our journey as we disrupt an industry that has skirted inclusivity for far too long. It’s time for change.

Learn more about our story and approach
to plus size wedding rings.

Shop our plus size wedding rings.

Written by Kelsey Forrest