Style councel: Give your loved one a clacking good time

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Indy Lifestyle Online
Rings are a scary thing to buy someone at Christmas. They have so many meanings, it could be a love thing. Does this mean commitment? Or it could be a best friend thing. Aaah. But what about a ring for meditation, relaxation, or to calm addictive cravings? Melanie Rickey has found just the thing.

Two years ago Jess Canty of London jeweller Jess James decided to create a ring for a friend who always twiddled the Tibetan beads he wore around his neck. "He wore them constantly, and actually twiddled with them until they broke and he had to buy a new set," says Canty. He decided a ring could have the same properties as the beads and began work on what became the first new ring design to be patented for years.

It took several trials, the development of specialist engineering tools, and lots of money to come up with the finished product. The first one was given to the Tibetan bead-addicted friend, who loved it, and discarded his beads immediately. Then Canty made one for himself. Slowly more people heard about the special rings that aided concentration, relaxation, and meditation, and The Prayer Ring concept was born.

Fashion PR Beverly Cable calls her ring "my security blanket", Canty says it has helped friends cut down smoking, one customer even found her once bitten-to-the-quick fingernails had grown. The reason for their spiritual adulation is the 12 pieces of gold and a gap within the confines of the ring, which allows the pieces to move around freely and make a relaxing clacking noise. Alternatively the individual pieces can be twiddled with absent-mindedly.

Right now the Prayer Ring is the kind of "swear-by-it" accessory that goes beyond a fashion trend - this, as Calvin Klein would say "Is an experience to be shared with a man or a woman". Indeed, dedicated followers can't wait to share the experience. The converted say, "Can you hear the way it clacks", or "If you wear it on your third finger you can twiddle it easily with your thumb", or "It's helped me cut down on smoking/chocolate/coffee" etc.

This week the store has sold several of the rings. Two went to a gay couple who are using them as wedding rings, others as extra special Christmas gifts. Those interested in the rings should place orders with correct ring size before closing time tomorrow for a Christmas delivery.

1. The Prayer Ring - three-part ring in platinum, 18ct yellow and white gold, pounds 1,150 female, pounds 1,200 male.

Two-part ring, 18ct yellow and white gold, pounds 930 female, pounds 980 male.

2 and 4. Love thing: Diana Porter, rings from pounds 70-pounds 91, earrings, pounds 126, necklace, pounds 60. All available from Jess James, 3 Newburgh Street, Soho, London W1V 0171 437 0199.

3. Friend thing: Beaten silver jewellery from a selection by Van Peterson, 194-196 Walton Street, London SW3, call 0171 584 1101 for mail-order inquiries.

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