Why buy a Cobalt ring?

Being in the wedding ring game for quite some time, we’ve seen all sorts of trends come and go. We’ve also seen new products come into the market that have really added to the product suite that men have to choose from. Cobalt is one of those such products.

Cobalt rings are a relatively recent innovation, created by some of the worlds top designers and metallurgists searching for a product with lots of upside and reducing the floors of the product. Cobalt was created to have a similar appearance to Platinum, with its brilliant “white” lustre. However, in our opinion, Cobalt is a far superior product for jewellery than Platinium. The only place that Platinum has it covered is the “status” of Platinum.

cobalt wedding ring

Cobalt Rings are made by combining Cobalt, Chrium and Molybdenum as well as other trace materials.

Some of the benefits of Cobalt Rings include

– Hardness & scratch resistance. Cobalt is around 3 times harder than Platinum. The result is that it is an extremely durable product that is highly scratch resistant. I have worn Cobalt as my ring of choice for many years, and whilst the product does scratch – the scratches are very fine. You need to look closely to see the scratches. Its not like Gold, Silver or Platinum that have massive scratches all over the ring really quickly. Also, even though the product is hard, it is not so hard that it becomes brittle, which is really important. Its less hard than Tungsten and is more malleable so it is less prone to cracking.

– Brilliant white Hue. One of the best attributes Cobalt has is its wonderful colour. It is a very “white” colour which is stunning when either polished or brushed. Of all the products we sell, it is Cobalt that really lights up a clients face when they see their ring come out. It catches the light beautifully well. The one downfall of this colour is that Cobalt is near on impossible to photograph properly. Its really hard to capture the true colour and reflection properly.

Cobalt ring combined with ceramic. Precision engineering -  available at Alpha Rings

Cobalt ring combined with ceramic. Precision engineering – available at Alpha Rings

– Price. Compared to precious metal jewellery, it is very inexpensive. Most Cobalt rings can be purchased for less than $300 which is an absolute steal for the product that you are getting. Its certainly more expensive than both Titanium and Tungsten, but it is a different product. Titanium is more versatile so more can be done with it. The machining of Cobalt probably produces an end result closer to Tungsten because of its hardness.

Cobalt fashion ring

Not all Cobalt rings are made equally though. Because Cobalt rings are made with a bunch of different materials, some manufacturers can use cheaper products in higher proportions which compromises both the scratch resistance and the “cracking” resistance of the products. Cobalt products made by Alpha Rings are of the highest possible quality, so whilst we won’t claim that your Cobalt product will never scratch (if you find a retailer that does, I would suggest you be very concerned about buying from them), it will be as high a quality as you will find anywhere. Click here to have a look at our cobalt rings. 

Like it’s 1999

It might be winter here in Australia, but our British writer has been dashing around like a mad man at London Collections: Men getting a preview of what’s to come in SS14. And what did he find? Well, it looks like the 90s are continuing their style revival (making the decade that barely seems like yesterday officially retro!) But is this a look the modern man could, or would want to try and achieve?

Well according to our overseas contributor, the answer is in short: yes. Read on to find out why and how.

The trick to pulling off 90s style fashion is to not treat it as a trend. What I mean by this is you should avoid opting for statement ‘90s-style’ pieces such as acid-wash denim. Instead, try channelling a 90s aesthetic into your wardrobe next summer (or even before).

What I noticed on the runways during London Collections: Men was, again, a lot of sporty influences. Bomber jackets continue to be a must-own piece for every man’s collection, particular in pure black or monochrome. Contrast sleeves were also popular, especially on bomber jackets and other styles of outerwear.

The overall look was clean and minimal with a sporty undertone. We’re not talking sporty as in ‘lads-at-the-footie’ sporty, but an urban, stylish take on the look. Rucksacks also continue to be an essential piece, no matter your age. Of course be sensitive to the occasion (not every guy will choose to team his rucksack with a finely tailored suit), but they will always look great with casualwear.

Finally, 90s style looks set to stick around next season when it comes to footwear. This craze has been in full swing this summer here in London, and if this week’s London Collections were anything to go by; it’s worth investing in a pair of sporty shoe staples.

From high to low tops, guys everywhere have been reaching for the footwear styles they were rocking throughout the 1990s. If you’re feeling particularly daring, try teaming a pair of sporty sneakers with a sharp suit. Sound crazy? Perhaps, but it somehow works! Guys over here in London have been striding through the summer months nailing the smart-meets-casual look with ease.

Hoff

So there you have it gents. When it comes to your wardrobe next summer, get ready to party like it’s 1999…

The Pea Coat: We salute you!

 

There are many reasons why winter might not be your favourite season, but one thing it does have is great style. From durable coats to cosy knits, make sure you wrap up in sartorial panache for the colder months ahead.

 

There is one particular style of outerwear that we believe every man needs to invest in: the pea coat. Whether it’s for work or weekend, this military-inspired staple is effortlessly stylish and will remain in your wardrobe a lifetime.

 

Nautical Origins

 

There are certain pieces of clothing that withstand decades, or sometimes even centuries, of ever-changing trends. A pea coat is one of these timeless garments, originating as far back as the 1720s where references to the pea jacket first appeared in American newspapers. Today, the distinctive style remains consistently relevant and often true to its original design.

 

Originally worn by sailors of European navies, pea coats are recognised by their wide lapels, double-breasted fronts and often over-sized wooden or metallic buttons. Traditionally made from 30-ounce wool, pea coats were designed to keep sailors warm at sea by retaining their body heat.

 

Mod to Modern Day

peacoat

The next stage of the pea coat’s journey was when it became more of a style statement than a practical piece. Although the parka is the first style of outerwear you would associate with the 1960s mods, a smarter approach to the look is to don a classic pea coat.

 

Today, the pea coat remains one of the most stylish pieces of men’s outerwear, while also remaining entirely practical. In recent years it has made a huge comeback, particularly with the resurgence of military style.

 

How to Wear the Pea Coat

 

What’s great about the pea coat is how versatile the piece of outerwear is. Whether you’re heading to the boardroom or the bar, this durable style will keep you both warm and naturally on-trend.

 

When you’re heading off on your commute to work, a classic navy pea coat will keep your tailored charcoal suit dry while ensuring you stand out from the crowd. When heading out with friends at the weekend, a black or grey style will work perfectly over a sporty polo or striped tee teamed with indigo jeans and loafers.

 

So what are you waiting for guys? Sail on in style…

The One Thing Men Can Do That Women Can’t

It’s official…  Beards are back.  From Brad Pitt to George Clooney to Ben Affleck, it seems that everyone has been sporting them recently.  And why not?  Five-bladed razors are all well and good, but daily battling against something your body does naturally can be tiresome, if not on some occasions downright impossible.  If you’re looking to have a break from the razor, the good news is 2013 is the year of the beard!  Whether you want to dip your toe in the water with a bit of stubble, or are looking to jump in at the deep end by throwing away the razor and having a wild, laissez-faire attitude to your man fuzz, all systems are go!

 

No longer, is there the requirement for men to be freshly shaven to connote tidiness and cleanliness.  It seems that not only is 2013 the year of the beard, it’s also the year of the grunge, with young, fashion conscious hipsters sporting long beards, the more untamable and ironic, the better.  After all, when we get down to it, why grow a beard that still requires grooming?  The inner caveman in all men yearns to be wild and free from societal restraints like grooming and bathing.  Well, okay so consenting to shower regularly on behalf of loved ones, is sort of excusable, but surely the least you can do to please your inner caveman is grow the very symbol of manliness!

 

Growing a beard in some ways is a rite of passage.  How long can it grow?  What shape will it take?  Was grandma ginger?  A never ending learning experience as you discover whether people think you look better or worse with facial hair (heads up: a study by Behavioral Ecology found that the majority of women find bearded men less attractive however also at the same time, perceive them as deserving more respect and being more powerful and of a higher-status than their clean-shaven brethren).  Having a beard comes with a lot of perks. Wear it with glasses and you’re on the surefire route to being mistaken as a college professor…  Also, why not do something Justin Bieber can’t do?  The pint-sized teen might have made more money in his first paycheck than you’ll earn in a lifetime, but look on the bright side.  You can grow a beard. He can’t…  Score 1-0 to you.

 

Oh and if things really start to take off, you can always head over to the National Beard and Mustache Championships held yearly in the United States for your shot at $5000 of prize money!

But really, money aside, it all comes down to this:  With a beard, you get to look like one hell of a badass.

Just dont grow one if you play for the Melbourne FC!

Alpha Rings speaks to Adam Rosenberg – Part II

 

Nick Fox – What does Edward Mirell stand for, and how do you want to be known in the marketplace?

Adam Rosenberg – The brand Edward Mirell stands for, again with the background, history and heritage of our company, absolutely stands for quality, innovation – we’re definitely leaders in this category, we’ve introduced this category and we continue to lead in it. New processes, materials to achieve all the different looks that consumers are wanting to see in the market today.

Design is really important to us, we have some of the world’s most amazing designers on staff, headed by Eddie Rosenberg. So you will see as you look through our collection we’ve got about 20 men’s collections, we’ve got about 13 women’s collections and a countless number of wedding band programs in different materials. And again we stand for the quality of the materials that we use, but each collection is truly inspired. There is a real thought and emotion behind each collection that we bring to the market, that really brings something much more tangible to the consumer, something real.

NF – The Pallas band is the perfect example of that.

AR – Yeah the Pallas bands were actually inspired as we were thinking “what really gets the male customer excited?” And its that code of valour, strength that we like to adhere to, or like to at least believe we adhere to. And so we look back to the roman warrior era’s and samurai era’s and that’s where we actually came up with the Pallas collection. Looking at the different adornments on the swords and shields and armour from those time periods. The Templar collection actually came from the samurai era’s, so that’s two examples.

Edward Mirell Pallas Titanium Band

NF – And you’ve got the Samurai collection and Stealth aswell, they’re inspired collections

AR – Yeah each of the collections, even in the ladies, have the ordinary miracles collection which is the Koi fish and frogs and it really speaks of the strength of the female spirit. The Koi fish for example swims against current and survives in frozen water to come back in spring. And the frogs represent that metamorphosis of personality and person through their life so its definitely representative of the female spirit.

black-titanium-koi-fish-ringTitanium Frog ring

NF – And I love the Timoku bands, the joining of two separate materials

AR – Timoku is a really exciting new process that we have patented, it’s the first time that contemporary metals have been used in the Mokume process. The Mokume process is a Japanese metaling where they take two different materials and literally fuse them together through isostatic pressing and heat. It creates a sort of banded look which is why they normally call it the wood grain metal. But the story that the Japanese actually created for us, they say because it actually a merging of two metals, they say it’s the binding of two spirits that together make a stronger unit, but still retail their individuality. So it definitely speaks well for our wedding band program.

Bevelled Timoku Ringdomed Titanium TimokuTimoku Ring

NF – Thanks very much Adam!

You can see the full video here

A cut above

mens crown cut

There comes a point in every man’s life when he’s expected to have found himself and his style. This is especially the case when a man reaches 30. The mistakes of his teens and twenties are behind him, making way for bold sartorial confidence.
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Hairstyles however are unique to the individual. Some men want it long, others lose theirs early on. No matter your age, choosing the right hairstyle can be a tricky task. First you have to decide on the right style for you, and then you have to learn to maintain it. Here are some great hairstyle ideas for men in their 30s and beyond.

  1. The Crown Cut

This style is the perfect choice for men with thinning hair, as it adds the appearance of more volume on top. Short on the sides with short-to-medium-length layers around the crown, this is a cut that is both stylish and easy to maintain.
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mens crown cut

 

 

  1. Deep Side Parting

The deep side parting is a huge style for 2013, as it really compliments every face shape. It has a retro feel to it that women love and is easy to slick down with the right product to create a high-gloss finish. Just avoid this style if you’re hair’s thinning, to avoid stepping into “comb-over” territory.
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Deep side Part

 

 

  1. Shaved All Over

Having your hair short and sweet will never go out of fashion. Shaving your hair off to a low grade is easy to maintain, goes with any style and is effortlessly masculine. Whether you’re losing your hair or not, a short style all over is perfect for a man in his 30s and beyond.
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shaved head

 

  1. Long and Layered

It might not be the obviously choice of hairstyle, but many men wouldn’t have their hair any other way. Plus, if you’ve reached your 30s and still have a full head of hair; why not grow it long? The trick this year is to have your long locks layered. Don’t worry if you have to ask your missus what this means, just trust us it’s the way to go in 2013.

mens long hairstyle
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  1. Short and Messy

When all else fails, you can’t beat a short and messy haircut. All you need is a bit of wax, hairspray and a choppy style and you’re good to go. Just remember, the aim is to get the birds – not to get a bird’s nest!
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mens-short-messy-hairstyle

Contemporary vs Traditional Ring materials

In times gone by there was very limited choice for men when it came to wedding rings. Plain gold bands were pretty much the be all and end all of the Mens wedding Ring range.
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Since then more and more fancy rings have come into the market. Not only that but contemporary metals and a range of precious metals have become more accepted as materials to make rings out of. Precious metal rings include Gold, Platinum and Palladium, whilst contemporary materials include Titanium, Tungsten, Cobalt, Steel and Ceramic.
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Gold Rings in the current era are absolutely no longer the automatic first choice for a wedding band. The benefit of gold is its “perceived value”, and the fact it is deemed to be quite a traditional product. The huge downside is that gold becomes dull very quickly, is extremely expensive, and is one of the easiest metals to scratch.

Gold-mens-ring
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Contemporary metals on the other hand have been engineered to remain scratch resistant for longer. All contemporary metals used in commercial jewellery applications have higher scratch resistance than Gold. All of these metals are also much much cheaper than gold.

A key point for selection of a contemporary metal ring is the quality of the product. It is absolutely imperative that the client does their homework and shops around to ensure they are comfortable with the quality of their new product. Like any product, the quality of mens rings can vary wildly. Cheap mens rings are out there and can be purchased on most online marketplaces.
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Contemporary products undoubtedly offer a great deal to the modern consumer. The styles that can be replicated are exclusive and cannot be made in materials such as gold and platinum due to uniquely engineered ductility and malleability. What this does is gives the consumer a great range of choice in designs. You will not find this with precious metal rings

Tungsten and Silver Bevelled ring
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Tungsten domed ring with silver

Tungsten rings offer the most superior Scratch resistance but due to their hardness are somewhat limited from a design point of view.

 

Titanium & Black Titanium Cable Ring
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Titanium Fashion Ring

Titanium Rings offer an amazing blend of scratch resistance and design possibilities. The results are often quite spectacular.

 

Timoku Titanium Ring

Timoku-Silver-Ring TitaniumTimoku Rings are amongst the most aesthetically appealing rings found anywhere in the world. They feature all the advantages of grey and black Titanium. Exclusive to Edward Mirell due to the patent on Black Titanium.

 

Royale Black Titanium RingRose Gold Titanium RingBlack Titanium Rings can only be purchased in the Edward Mirell brand. This is due to EM owning the patent on Black Titanium. Products posing as Black Ti can be bought on the net, however these are just regular titanium coated black. Only the EM product has the unique properties that make Black Ti sought after by some of the worlds largest companies like Tiffany, Porsche and Harley Davidson.

Summer’s most popular mens jewellery – Black

Black Tungsten Mens Ring

With Summer now well and truly behind us and the ever unpredictable weather of Autumn upon us, we can reveal Alpha Rings hottest items over the past 3 months.
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Black has again been popular last season, with Edward Mirell’s Black Titanium continuing to prove popular. Tungsten lines were also popular with the strong contrast of black inlays again prominent. So in no particular order, here are some of the lines that clients made popular in the summer of 2013

Black Tungsten Mens RingAlways a popular item, this particular Tungsten ring was again a hit with the Australian public. Although this ring can be bought quite a bit cheaper off some of the popular “internet marketplaces”, we have tested some of these cheaper rings and the quality has been found to be significantly substandard to Alpha Rings products. Inlays that dont meet, poor quality resin and cobalt binders are just a few examples.
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Black mens ring with silverThe most popular ring in Summer from Edward Mirell was the Black Titanium ring with twin Silver inlays. A simply amazing product that looks better in the flesh. Although we also stock a similar item in ceramic, the Black Titanium version offers superior scratch resistance and is also lighter. The Silver will scratch the same on either ring.

 

tungsten and black resin
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One of the most beautiful Tungsten rings due to the stunning contrast offered by the black resin inlays. This has been a ring which has been very well received by our clients over the last few months and continues to be popular.

 

Pallas Titanium Cross Necklace

The above necklace was the most popular accessory last season. Incredibly light with a rustic almost medieval charm, one look and you can see why it has been a hit with our clients
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The above products have certainly been popular from Christmas onwards, however that should not necessarily sway your decision. The great thing about Alpha Rings is that our range is so diverse that there truly is something for everyone. As our store continues to grow strongly it is very apparant that clients love our wide selection. Unique and individual tastes are easily catered for to enable you to get what you truly want.
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So feel free to browse our Titanium, Black Titanium and Tungsten Ring collections here.

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…

 

 

Winter is coming

MENS FASHION WEEK

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.

MENS FASHION WEEK
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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!