Big plastic flowers that look like they’re buttons.

Sleek silver spoon bands that hardly cost nothin’

Swirling glass orbs and some odd, felted things

These are a few of my favorite rings.

When the Dow bites, when NASDAQ stings, when I’m feeling sad,

I simply remember my favorite rings

And then I don’t feel … sooooo bad.

A few months ago, I heard a news story on the radio about how women buy expensive makeup when the economy tanks. We’re not about to go out and spend, say, $1,000 on an evening gown, but a $20 lipstick is an affordable indulgence. Seeing as I’m up to my lifted and separated eyelashes in cosmetics, I’d rather treat myself to costume jewelry. With the exception of my wedding ring and a few family heirlooms, I’m not much for gold, platinum and gems anyway. But a cocktail ring the size of Delaware? Perfect.

One of my faves is a gift from ShopGirl Jr., a big hunk of black and copper Venetian glass that she picked up at Ingrid’s German Shop in Bangor. It’s a showstopper, especially when I wear black nail polish. I also love spoon rings, especially the $5 model I picked up at a craft fair last fall. If you want a spoon ring, chances are at least one vendor will be selling them at any craft fair you visit this fall. They’re ubiquitous, and yet, each one is unique.

I wear these when I want to feel elegant. Inspired? Check out the David Tishbi designs at Metropolitan Soul in downtown Bangor — they’re a bit more expensive than my craft fair find, but worth every penny. Want to drool? Visit Shaw Contemporary Jewelry in Northeast Harbor.

Stillwater’s own Amanda Coburn designs bold, gorgeous bezel-set rings — you can find her online at My favorite is the rutilated quartz ring, a bargain at $35. Old Navy is practically giving away its enamel rings — they’re trendy yet classic, and they add a quick hit of style on the cheap.

Looking for something whimsical? Look no further than The Grasshopper Shop, which has adjustable plastic flower rings (they remind me of buttons) that are fun and funky. Their $7.95 price tag makes them even better. Earlier in the summer, during a trip to Aroostook County, I picked up a felted flower ring at Monica’s Scandinavian Shop. It’s completely over-the-top and I love it. Monica’s is an old favorite, but I was pleasantly surprised when I visited Wilder’s Jewelry Store in Presque Isle. Yes, the store has all the usual trappings of a traditional jeweler, but the contemporary silver and costume jewelry was fresh, fun and affordable.

Speaking of fun, if you want something that really makes a statement, check out the owl ring at At $14, whooo could pass it up? The same could be said for the designs of Amanda K. Lockrow ( I’m especially fond of her flapper rings, but there’s something lovely on there for everyone.

These inexpensive baubles are enough to chase away even the bailout blues. Shop for yourself, and soon you’ll be singing a new tune about a few of your favorite rings.

We have a winner!

The winner of the Fashion Challenge tickets is now available online at — and be sure to check the blog for more giveaways throughout the month of October. Happy blogging! And, as always, happy shopping.

ShopGirl would love to hear from you! Send questions, comments or suggestions by e-mail to:, by U.S. mail to Kristen Andresen, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402-1329, or by fax to 941-9476. For exclusive online shopping tips, click on the ShopBlog icon on the bottom of the BDN home page: