Why on earth I got a Facebook ad for wedding rings made out of shotgun barrels is something I'll never understand. But since I had to learn that such things exist, now you do, too. The rings are called "Barrel Bands" and are sold by the Florida-based company "Everyday Outdoors," which describes itself this way:
Our lives as family men and business owners are full of incredible joys: our children, our wives, and our passions— nourishing those joys means our lives as outdoorsmen see fewer days. Though no matter how few, there's still no day like a day of sitting in a duck blind, air-boating in the Everglades, or fly-fishing on the flats. Life has its own plans; sometimes the call of the wild gets put on hold. Going to work, picking up the kids, and going out to dinner: all things you probably shouldn't do in a full ghillie suit. We've tried, trust us. That's why our products are meant to bridge the gap between the wilderness and everywhere else, so you can be just as comfortable crouching in a duck blind as you are sitting in a church pew. What we realized is that we owe the lives we cherish today to the days that we spent outdoors. The more connected we are with nature, the more connected we are with ourselves. That's how we were raised; that's why we started Everyday Outdoors.
While they have rings in women's sizes (ranging in price from $165 to $249), most of the rings for sale are for men—those range from $229 to $449. They explain on their website why they use shotguns to make the rings:
The Shotgun has a long history in the outdoor world, as being one of the most iconic guns on the market. It has an extremely wide range of uses for hunting different species. The reliability in different terrains and climates, is also second to none. All of these attributes lends it to be the ultimate outdoorsmen's and hunter's weapon of choice.
They also share how they make the rings:
It took over 18 months and nearly two dozen prototypes to complete the design the Barrel Band. We tried different widths, thicknesses, finishes, and fits. It even took implementing a completely new procedure to size the rings and not compromise the integrity of the shotgun barrel. This procedure is something that has never been done before in the jewelry industry. Each band is machine cut directly from the shotgun barrel to ensure quality and precision. The band is then cut again by the hands of experienced jewelers to the proper finger size. The 14kt gold insert is then added and a "tack-weld" is used to secure the insert in place. The band then goes through over 6 different polish stages before reaching its final state. Lastly, the ring goes through a thorough inspection to ensure the highest quality product possible.
Lest you worry that they are ruining perfectly good shotguns, don't fret. They explain that they only use decommissioned guns to make their rings:
No working shotguns were harmed in the making of this band! Our bands are sourced from decommissioned gun barrels that would otherwise be discarded or destroyed. We firmly believe in a shotgun being taken care of and lasting you a lifetime and would never cut one up if it could still be used by someone.
If you want to buy clothes to go along with your ring made from a gun barrel, Everyday Outdoors has that, covered too. They sell all kinds of gear—including hoodies, long sleeve shirts, short sleeve shirts, shorts, hats, fishing towels, and more—made with their signature "state camo" patterns. Yes, you can buy clothes with camouflage patterns created from the shape of various states. They only have 17 states so far, so if you live in Oregon or North Dakota, sorry, you're out of luck. The states available include Texas, most of the southern states (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia), and a handful of others (Alaska, California, Michigan, New York, and Wisconsin). They also have a United States camo, for your patriotic hunting/lounging/church needs.
Ok, clearly I'm not the target audience for any of this stuff, and I know enough from growing up in Louisiana that there is definitely a market for it. I'll never understand gun culture, though, and especially wearing a wedding ring made from a gun. How can a thing that kills things also symbolize love?