Friday, February 5, 2010

Instant Vintage: Beyonce Brings Sassiness to Nuptials

It looks as if Sasha's empire is about to get even fiercer. In an unprecedented celebrity branding move, Beyonce Knowles will be unveiling a new twist on an old favorite. Recharged by her infectious and socially conscious lyrics, Knowles has set her empty sights towards ameliorating a serious blight in the African-American community: lack of marital commitment.

On February 8, just in time for Valentine’s Day, Knowles is set to unleash her latest branding endeavor onto the world: a line of engagement and wedding rings. The ring line, not subtly though cleverly called, "Put A Ring On It by Beyonce Knowles," was inspired by Knowles' smash hit, "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)." The legendary jeweler, Tiffany and Co. will carry the line; a less expensive version of the rings will be available at Kay Jewelers, under the similar, but more urban appellation "Put a Rang on It by Bey."

The idea actually came to Knowles during a ring fitting for her faux everyday version of the 20-carat ring given to her by now husband and rap star, Jay-Z. "I was sitting there with my girls [sister and divorcee, Solange Knowles, and former Destiny's Child co-members, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams], and they were all complimenting me on the ring design, which I did myself," Knowles said during a phone interview. "Then Kelly mentioned something about a ring line, and I thought it was just an amazing idea," Knowles explained. "I'm so glad I thought of it."

Buyers will have several ring designs to choose from. Tiffany and Co. will offer the Beyonce, an emerald cut four-carat diamond surrounded by 25 yellow diamonds (the number signifying Knowles' alleged age) forming a crown around the larger stone, set atop a platinum band. The other choice is the Solange, a smaller, less gaudy-looking bauble of a princess diamond with bands available in yellow or white gold and silver. Kay Jewelers will make the Kelly, Michelle, and them other 2, respectively, available to its customers.

Though the line has not officially launched, there is considerable excitement and interest surrounding the new product. In fact, Bey marketing prowess is such a tour de force that Mary Jay Williams, founder and CEO of the Ball & Chain Society, an organization that specializes in getting prisoners to marry their respective partners in facility sanctuaries, said that the Kay Jeweler's line will be the official rings used in all future ceremonies.

"People think that prisoners should be using their money on things other than wedding rings, perhaps on things like a new suit for job interviews or lawyers fees. We disagree. And now Beyonce has made our work so much easier with this line. You can't put a price on the happiness of being in a relationship that is recognized in the eyes of the Lord and saviour Jesus Christ. And with the new payment plan option, you don't have to!" Williams exclaimed.

Monica Chanel Jefferson, of Indianapolis, IN, is already a satisfied customer. Jefferson's boyfriend of four years surprised her with an advanced copy of the Solange when he proposed to her during a First Friday's club event earlier this month. "I'll never forget it," Jefferson, an accountant, recounts excitedly. "We had gone to dinner with friends at P.F. Chang's earlier that evening. Then, during the [First Friday's presents:] John Legend show, [fiance Alexander Deshawn Whitmore] pulled me on stage and asked me to marry him. Then John Legend played 'No Other Love.' That's our song." Jefferson spoke enthusiastically about her engagement ring, and says she'd love to have a wedding ring from Knowles' line. "I cannot wait to be Monica Chanel Jefferson-Whitmore," she added. The young couple met at an Urban League young professionals networking event. They plan to wed in June at the groom's parents' suburban Atlanta, GA home.

Knowles' people hope that Williams' and Jefferson's positive reaction to the line aren't unique. They've put a considerable amount of capital into the line, including a star-studded product launch event to be held at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, NV on February 12 where the likes of Samuel Jackson, Denzel Washington, and Kobe Bryant will make appearances. Though invited, neither Diddy nor Lil Wayne, two of hip hop's most notorious baby daddies, are expected to attend. The soiree will feature hand models, a performance by Knowles, and a special broom jumping section where the Reverend Jesse Jackson will marry interested couples. Willing participants will receive 30% off of any bling from the "Put a Ring on It Line." "I don't want to be just another diva," Knowles said. "I want to be a way of life." Indeed, Beyonce. Indeed.  After all, weaves and hour glass figures are fleeting, but diamonds are forever.

*This post was co-authored by Moya B. and Summer of Sam.  Moya B. wrote all the funny parts.

The yoga cats call this move the downward facing diva

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