Before proposing to his girlfriend, Dan Ko decided that everything had to be perfect, including the engagement ring. So, he truly personalized his proposal by 3D modeling and printing a ring which he knew his future wife would love.
For his wedding back in March 2016, Dan Ko, a self-proclaimed “tech enthusiast and 3D printing expert” came up with a few romantic and highly personalized touches.
Around the time of the wedding, Ko wrote a how to guide for 3D printing porcelain vases which adorned the tables. However, he is now divulging how he created the perfect engagement ring for his partner, Jen.
Ko explains that designing a ring is actually more time-intensive than it is difficult. He explains that the process took four months to create a design he was happy with. He also had the help of an experienced Shapeways designer. Of course, ring shopping could take less time than this but would the result be as personal?
He explains: “I wanted my wedding to have custom touches, to be meaningful for my family and friends and not just a commercialized, cookie cutter event. I could have gone the DIY route, but why pull out the hammer and saw when I could simply design something, upload the file and have it made professionally instead?”
Reducing Costs but Increasing Sentimental Value
Ko adds that his personalized ring actually cost 50% less than if he’d bought a major brand ring from a retailer. Even with the costs of multiple prototypes and jeweler fees, he still managed to save.
To design the ring, Ko first found an experienced 3D designer who could help him out. He reached out to Scott Denton, a New-York based designer who “made the process easy”.
He explains that a Pinterest board created by Jen made the designing process a lot easier too. Her preferred aesthetic was clean simple lines with antique engraved elements. As Jen is a dentist, Ko knew he needed to design a ring which would be comfortable during her working day as she’s constantly taking gloves on and off.
One of the more expensive processes of designing the ring was hiring an experienced jeweler who would ensure the stone was set properly. Ko then headed to New York City’s diamond district to find the perfect stone. He found the right diamond at a wholesale.
Ko and Denton then went back and forth to come up with a sketch and finally a 3D file which would be right for Jen. When the file was ready, they prototyped the ring in Fine Detail Plastic (FDP). By prototyping the ring, they found a few design aspects which needed to be changed but it wasn’t long before they were printing in platinum and having the jeweler set the stone.
The final touches for the proposal were renting and decorating a lounge, inviting friends and family and getting down on one knee. Ko explains that he was nervous about the size of the ring but, luckily, it was a perfect fit and Jen loved it. She also said yes!