How to wear prints

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Menswear has been getting bolder and bolder over the last few years, which might feel like a big step for many guys. With so many styles, trends and colours to choose from… where do you start? Particularly if you’re more than happy living in your favourite pair of jeans teamed with a basic tee.

Well, for a guy who wants to test the waters of a more fashion-forward approach, prints are a great way to go. From a printed shirt, to a printed tee to even printed trousers or chinos (possibly for the more daring among us), this of-the-moment look exudes both confidence and effortless style.
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So let’s get started with the printed shirt.

Depending on the occasion, the style of print you opt for in a shirt should be considered. For instance, a bold Aztec or geometric print will usually suit a casual shirt more than a formal one. Meanwhile, a subtle stripe or polka dot print would be great for making your formal look your own – whether it’s for work or a wedding.

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If you’re rocking a printed shirt for a formal look, ensure your tie, pocket square and most importantly your suit are plain and refined.

Next up – the printed T-shirt.
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This is where it gets interesting. You have a lot more room to play with a printed tee, providing you stick to black or indigo jeans, chinos or shorts. This will again create contrast and place emphasis on the print.

There are so many options out there for printed T-shirts, so allow yourself to experiment and take a few risks. Just remember your most essential accessory for this look: confidence. Once you have this, the opportunities are truly endless.
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And speaking of endless opportunities… why not try printed trousers?
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Ok, we realise this one really will be out of a lot of people’s comfort zones. However, the rule is to pull a pair of printed trousers, chinos or shorts on and forget all about the bold style statement. It might take some getting used to, but come on… chicks love a man with confidence! So what are you waiting for… forget reading the small print and let loose…



Camelbak HAWG NV Daypack

Introducing one of the greatest daypacks that Camelbak has produced, the HAWG NV.  Its niche use is for mountain biking, however this versatile back is equally as useful as a trekking/hiking pack or general daypack. The pack comes in at around 16lt + a 3 litre reservoir/hydration system.
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Whilst this might seem a fairly small capacity, the incredible thing about this pack is in the design. The various pockets  allow a large amount of additional storage that might not be available in many other packs.
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The pack has an external pocket which is designed to carry a helmet. So if you are not needing to carry a helmet, that gives significant extra storage which can be strapped closed. There is a top inner pocket with a soft lining which can carry sunglasses or a phone. My Samsung Galaxy S4 only just squeezes in there however. Side pockets allow for water bottles. The back pocket is designed to carry the 3L bladder. However if you are not carrying a bladder, this can be used as additional storage for thin items.
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The main compartment is big enough to carry all of your daily travelling needs and there is a secondary compartment with additional partitions for things such as phones, torches etc.

Camelbak daypack hydration

This pack excels with its harness system and its unique mesh back. It has both a sternum strap and a well padded, thick waist strap. The waist strap when pulled tight keeps its tension and takes a tremendous portion of the weight. Fully loaded, the weight is well distributed over the chest, waist and shoulders, taking pressure off the back and shoulders.

When I recently traveled doing a week of theme parks I had the pack loaded with the following at one point (with no water bladder)

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1.5 liter water bottle in main compartment

2 small water bottle on the side (3 liters water in total)

point and shoot camera





3 sandwiches

pair of shorts
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light second layer

2 banana’s

umbrella hanging off side strap


The pack was well loaded, and contained everything that I needed for the day. Although heavy, the weight was well distributed and the difference between it and a more standard pack from a comfort point of view was like light and day.

The pack also has the Camelbak back mesh which keeps the pack slightly off your back in order to allow air flow between the pack and your back.

camelbak back mesh
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Much has already been written about Camelbak’s hydration system. Along with Osprey they have been pioneers in this field. The system works well, is unobtrusive and does the job it is designed for.
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This is without question the best daypack I have ever used. Retailing at anywhere between $150-$200 AUD, it is not a cheap one. However this pack will last as it is very durable. This is a product that really is worth the money. Its a brilliant pack. The pack is highly fashionable and does not look like a hiking pack like some of the Osprey’s.  Suited for a wide range of tasks, there is absolutely no doubt that this would be a pack that I would buy again in a heartbeat.

Winter is coming


According to the infinitely good Australian government summer is at an end and autumn is upon us. Even though temperatures are still in their high twenties and low thirties you mustn’t necessarily turn your collective gazes north to investigate what your brothers in the Northern Hemisphere will be wearing in the spring and summer.
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If the trends from the catwalk are anything to go by you should consider yourself spared from some of the atrocities that are already gracing the streets. It remains a mystery to me why anyone with half a mind would invest in a pair of slim fitted camouflage trousers.

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You’re a stallion, not a sloth, forward looking, not looking back. The business of style is one for the avante garde not one for the historians. Just like the business of being a man is the search of the roads less travelled not the investigation of those so well trampled that every inch of them is as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

As such you must get ready for the bleak months ahead. In the words of Eddard Stark of Winterfell from the Television series and book the Game of Thrones  “Winter is coming”. Like the boy scouts that you are, I would see you well prepared.
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Ferragamo leather jacket

Ferragomo Jacket Alpha Rings

The item that you simply cannot do without this winter is the biker jacket. Unlike the garish prints and outlandish colours like neoprene also on trend you’ll be able to wear this every year for the next decade while still looking like the lord of the outback. That’s assuming that you keep your waistline fairly constant.

What’s more it goes brilliantly with this Edward Mirrell black cord bracelet and the black titanium cord ring shown below – Given the stark black appearance.


Edward Mirrel black titanium memory cable bracelet.
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Alpha Rings Black cable Bracelet

Black Titanium cable ring with diamonds.
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black titanium cable ring
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Feel free to check out more Titanium Jewelery right here!

Edward Mirell Black Titanium Rapture Collection

One of Edward Mirell’s most celebrated lines is the “Rapture” collection. The rapture collection features both patented Black Titanium and Gray Titanium within its product suite. Stunning is an overused word in the jewelry industry, but I think its fair to say that the Rapture collection is exactly that. Featuring intricate designs and precise angles, it is an incredibly eye catching collection.  The collection is admittedly one of the more expensive lines that ALPHA Rings stocks, however that is due to the run of diamonds that is consistent with all the products in the line.
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At the forefront of the collection is the two Rapture rings, the Gray and Black Titanium varieties. Both intensely beautiful, our clients who have purchased this ring and in awe of the incredible appearance this creates on their hand. The black version, as with every product in the range, offers the sharpest contrast over the Gray.

One point to note is that the Rapture rings are relatively thick in comparison to a low profile plain band, at about 2.7 mm. generally this is no issue in larger sizes, however at smaller sizes such as 7-8, some people may find it a fraction thick. I have a size 8.5 and have no issues with the thickness.
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Some may view the images and think this range is quite heavy, however that is far from the case. Most products in the Rapture range weigh in at less than 10gm.

You will note that the rings have an inner liner, this is made of Silver. The feature of the rings are the 5 angle set diamonds, set into Silver which is then set into the respective Titanium outer.
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Black Titanium Rapture Ring
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Mens Titanium Rapture Ring
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The Cufflinks in the collection are also stunning. The Cufflinks, like the rings, will undoubtedly get noticed, particularly on a white shirt. Its difficult to imagine a more striking cufflink than either of these.  As with all products in the Rapture collection, the centerpiece is the 5 angled diamonds.

Black Titanium Cufflinks RaptureGrey Titanium Cufflinks

The next group of accessories is the Necklace and the Keyring. As with all other Rapture products, the distinctive features are the same.
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Black Titanium Necklace RaptureGrey Titanium Necklace Rapture
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Black Titanium Keyring RaptureGray Titanium Necklace RaptureAnd finally we have the emerging bracelets. Very unique products, there is no doubt that these will catch the eye. Although holding a little more weight than the rest of the collection, they are still considerably lighter than steel

Black Titanium Bracelet RaptureGrey Titanium Bracelet

As Edward Mirell’s exclusive distributor in Australia/NZ you can find all of the above products online at Alpha Rings. Feel free to browse the collections in their respective categories, and we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have about these incredible mens titanium rings, bracelets, keyrings and necklaces.

It’s in the details

Flecked Tie

Whether you’re wearing a finely tailored suit or your favourite pair of casual denim jeans, no man’s look is complete without the charming finishing touches. When it comes to the perfect ensemble, here’s our round-up of everything you need to own to stylishly seal the deal.
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Formal Finishing Touches

So you’ve found the perfect suit. Fantastic news – that’s the hard part out the way. Now to really bring the sartorial look alive… the stylish finishing touches.
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A flecked tie will add texture to a light cotton suit, giving your formal attire an extra layer of luxe. For a fashion-forward approach, opt for an oversized bow tie and round tortoise shell glasses with clear lenses.

Flecked Tie

A pocket square is another suiting essential; perfect for cutting a dash in the boardroom. Add a creative flair to your look by popping a printed handkerchief into the top pocket of a quirky blazer with oversized lapels. Or, keep it sharp by neatly folding a white pocket square and placing it into a well-cut suit jacket.
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pocket square

Finally, polish your formal ensemble off with the perfect footwear. From perforated tan brogues to burgundy tasselled loafers, the choices are truly endless for a gentleman’s suave shoes.
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Casual Additions

Now that we have your formalwear covered, it’s time to consider the stylish additions to your casual attire.

A hat can give your look an effortless style update and there are so many styles to choose from. A beanie is the perfect choice for winter as it’s stylish and practical. A fedora is definitely more of a statement piece, adding a 1920s-inspired twist to your ensemble. This could also be worn with your formal attire.

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A panama is an obvious summer choice. Style this hat with edgier pieces such as distressed denim and a plaid shirt instead of pastels and linens to avoid stepping into pompous territory.

Like your formalwear, casual attire is not complete without the right footwear. Whether you opt for slip on driving shoes or deck shoes, or sandals for walks along the beach; don’t forget that shoes are often the first thing someone notices when they’re checking you out.
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Shine On

Finally, whether your look is smart or casual there is one finishing touch that should never be forgotten or underestimated: jewellery.

We’re not talking about dainty necklaces here, but bold and masculine pieces that we’re renowned for here at Alpha Rings. From statement cufflinks to chunky rings, the right jewellery will really polish off your ensemble in style. Here’s some inspiration to get you started…


The Titanium Pallas band, from Edward Mirells Men’s Titanium Bands

Edward Mirell Pallas Band
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Triple Black Titanium Cable bracelet, from Edward Mirells Titanium Accessories.


Carbon Fiber Tungsten Rings


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Carbon Fiber Tungsten Rings have been quite the rage for some time. They have been a consistently popular product at Alpha Rings for some time. Which one is most popular, and why? Well lets answer the second question first. Tungsten rings, due to their incredible hardness, are somewhat limited in their versatility compared to Titanium rings. Tungsten rings are limited to certain shapes and variations of those shapes. In reality, simple inlays (usually of precious metal) are generally as crazy as Tungsten rings get.
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All of the rings in this style are made in 8mm, by far the most popular width in mens rings. The rings need to be that width to enable a good visual representation of both the carbon fiber and the Tungsten.
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The Carbon Fiber surface is actually incredibly scratch resistant. They will stand up to a tremendous amount of wear and tear without becoming scuffed. That is the perfect compliment to the Tungsten, and a benefit over precious metal inlays.
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One other very important point. This ring can be bought very cheap in online markets such as ebay and Amazon. From our experience, (we have purchased products for testing) we have found cheap products to have substandard manufacturing standards. The Tungsten Carbide combines many elements which need to be in quite a specific ratio to give the overall characteristics to make good mens jewelry. This is often not the case with cheap products. How cheap must these products be manufactured for if they are able to turn a profit at such low sell points?

When you purchase with ALPHA Rings we believe you are getting amongst the best quality Tungsten Rings in the market, we guarantee no Cobalt in the ring and all our rings pass nickel release tests when batch tested.


The Green Tungsten Ring, somewhat surprisingly, is the most popular ring in its range, at Alpha Rings. The Green is quite subtle as the prominent colour of the Carbon Fiber is actually black.

Next in our list is the Tungsten Ring with black carbon fiber. This ring has a little bit of optical trickery about it. The “off black” colour within the inlay creates a kind of 3D effect. Its a fantastic ring, and it looks far better when one looks at it in the flesh than an image on the computer can do justice to air jordan retro 4

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The red carbon fiber tungsten ring is quite similar to the green ring, in that the colour is quite subtle against the black. Still a great looking ring.

Blue Carbon Fiber Tungsten RingAnd finally, this is the product in blue.  A much bolder statement, which many men do enjoy. This ring will stand out far more than any of the three listed air jordan retro 13

If you want to see more of our carbon fiber tungsten rings, feel free to browse the whole category!

Your Capsule Wardrobe part two


Following on from last week’s capsule wardrobe post, here are the final five essential items every man needs in his collection.
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6.       The Jeans

Sometimes it seems like we spend our whole lives searching for the perfect pair of jeans. Our recommendation is to stick to a straight leg pair in a regular fit – you really can’t go wrong with this style. If you want to make more of a fashion-forward style statement, opt for a pair of skinny jeans teamed with an oversized printed tee, or a loose fit pair paired with a relaxed check shirt for a more casual approach.
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 7.       The Knitwear

Knitwear is ideal for the transitional months. A chunky knit is the perfect piece to turn to throughout the winter, while a thin cardi is the go-to during cool summer evenings. The versatility of knitwear also allows you to wear it in both formal and casual situations; team with a skinny tie and crisp shirt for the former and a plain tee and jeans for the latter.

Mens cardigan
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 8.       The ShortsShorts have made a big comeback in fashion over the past couple of seasons, with tailored suit shorts stepping into the limelight in London for SS13. We would suggest sticking to a classic style that’s not too long and not too short. If the shorts are too long they fall into short trouser territory, whereas short shorts can lead to all sorts of disasters.

Mens Shorts
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9.       The Chinos

Perhaps one of the more recent additions to a gentleman’s capsule wardrobe, chinos have become true staples in recent seasons. Bright colours and chalky pastels give the style a contemporary update, but you can’t go wrong with a classic pair in navy, beige or black. Roll the cuffs up and team with slip on tasselled loafers for a summery update.

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Navy Chinos
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 10.   The AccessoriesNo stylish gent’s wardrobe is complete without the finishing touches, which is where accessories come in. From polished cufflinks to quirky pocket squares, accessories add the final flair of creativity to an ensemble. They allow a man to express himself style-wise, while keeping the rest of his outfit classic and refined. So, if you’re opting for a tailored black or navy suit for the boardroom, give the look some life with a polka dot tie, paisley pocket square or a quirky pair of cufflinks:

Ross Leidy – Table Tennis Blade guru

Ross Leidy Table Tennis

As the director of an online fashion store, one of my passions is truly excellent service. The art of customer service seems somewhat lost to us in this day and age, as rude salespeople with an attitude become the norm. Not only that, but purchasing products that are made with love have been replaced by mass produced junk. If you get product knowledge than “Hmm, I’m not really sure”, then you have generally done well.
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Meet Ross Leidy, a great guy. A table tennis artist.
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Ross Leidy Table Tennis
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So you can imagine my raised eyebrows when I came across a true gentleman, Ross Leidy. As an avid player of table tennis, I was keen to upgrade my bat to something a little classier. Table tennis is one of the healthiest pursuits that a man or woman can partake in. It gives the opportunity to improve many of the core aspects of human health

– Balance

– Reflex and reaction time

– Cardiovascular health (very under-rated)

– Muscular Tone

– Flexibility
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– Mental concentration

– Team bonding and spirit


I happened across Ross and got him to design me a bat.  A mate of mine recommended him highly. The bat he produced was completely hand made, carved from wood. Ross engaged with me, and over the course of nearly 60 emails between us, I chose the shape, playing characteristics, handle size, handle design, wood composition and weight. To say the result is stunning is an understatement.
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Limba, Mahogany, Kiri, Mahogany, Limba

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The bat plays as well as it looks.  I write this post because I feel that it is important to promote human beings that, in their core are great people, are selfless, and have a positive contribution to society. There are many out there and they often go un-noticed. Ross in his own way contributes to the table tennis community in a very positive manner. Cheers Ross.

Its one of the most positive things a man can do. Pick up a table tennis bat, a golf club, a cricket bat, a footy or whatever. But get out there and do something so your kids can run around with you.
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And if your going to pick up a table tennis bat, give Ross Leidy a yell.

Lexus LFA – A car to dream about

Lexus LFA

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Rightly or wrongly, nothing says success like your car. Your car speaks volumes about your sense of style and to a large extent your personality. Picking up a date in a 1980 Volvo is quite cringeworthy indeed!
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Lexus LFA
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Were there one car that this author could pick up a date in, it would without any doubt be the Lexus LFA. This particular car is one that every man would love to own, but unfortunately very few will. With a price tag of around $400,000, its safe to say its out of most of our leagues.

Designed by Haruhiko Tanahashi, the car in the design phase had 500 strict not negotiables that had to be met.

Haruhiko Tanahashi

Tanashashi says of the LFA “Astonishingly lightweight, powerful and balanced, it is engineered to achieve one single goal – to deliver a truly supreme driving experience.”

LFA interior
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The LFA has simple astonishing performance. It is sleek, stylish and aggressive. Recently the LFA completed a lap at the Nurburgring in only 7.14. This lap time is faster than the likes of Porsche, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Nissan, Koenigsegg and more. It is the only car ever to lap under 7.20 with regular street tires!

Lexus as a manufacturer continue to set the benchmark for quality and style. The luxury/performance arm of the worlds biggest car manufacturer – Toyota, quality is delivered with an almost fanatical obsession.
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Black LFA
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There is no question that only a select few will ever get to drive, let alone own a Lexus LFA, but that doesn’t stop us from dreaming about it.

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You can have all the great clothes or fashion accessories you want, but if you turn up to work in an LFA I think that would quite safely trump anything that could be worn on your person

Black Titanium Rings vs Black Ceramic Rings

Black Titanium and Diamond Mens wedding band

An often asked question at Alpha Rings is “what is the difference between Black Ceramic, and Black Titanium Rings?” Alpha Rings stock both of these materials, however we focus far more on Black Titanium Rings. There is a very deliberate reason for this.
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Black Ceramic Rings start off as a powder and are super heated with tremendous pressure applied.  A blank is then formed whereupon the final shape is made. Inlays are carved, then squeezed in, and final polishing takes place.


Black Ceramic Ring

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The process for Black Titanium is quite different. Firstly, it is an Edward Mirell proprietary product. They own the patent to Black Titanium, and are the only company in the world that produces it. Elsewhere on the internet the term “black titanium” refers to regular Titanium which is then powdercoated or electroplated to give it a black finish. The problem with this is that the black will scratch off.

Edward Mirell Black Ti on the other hand does not use a powdercoating. As part of the process, certain metals are added and combined with extreme heat. The end result is that the Grey Titanium actually changes black at the molecular level. It penetrates into the Titanium a fraction of a millimeter.  This means if you happen to scratch Black Ti, it will scratch black.


Black Ti

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One of the other key differences is that Ceramic ends up being more brittle than Titanium. From a design and manufacturing point of view, that means that Ceramic designs are less intricate than Titanium ones. Titanium Rings are capable of being highly intricate, like the EM Koi Fish ring. That would be impossible to replicate in Ceramic due to its physical characteristics.
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Black Titanium combines the perfect blend of malleability, ductility, and scratch resistance.  Black Titanium has completely changed the game in both Mens and Womens jewelry in recent times. One of the most highly sought products in our range, Black Ti really needs to be seen to be believed.
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Check out our range of Black Titanium Bands, exclusive to Alpha Rings in Australia.