One of our Carrie K. family is getting married this year, so we got first hand insight into the trials and tribulations of our bride-to-be.
“Tell us about your journey to select Si Dian Jin that suits you and would also get a thumbs up from your mother-in-law.”
As a bride-to-be myself, I find buying my Si Dian Jin to be particularly stressful. This surprised me, as I am usually very quick with my shopping decisions. I am what some may call a ‘seasoned shopaholic’. After talking to a few other brides-to-be, I realised that we all have similar issues.
Most asked questions:
Following some intensive research, I uncovered a host of useful tips which I had found to be useful in tackling the questions above.
Question1: “Do I have to get 4 pieces of jewellery and do they have to be pure yellow gold?”
The answer is no, you do not. While Si Dian Jin is practiced by most Chinese families, the practice may differ between dialects. Teochew families would prefer to gift a 4-piece jewellery set, whereas Cantonese and Hokkien families may focus on getting one or two pieces of jewellery. Solid gold was preferred by older, more traditional relatives and in-laws due to its value. However, it is now common to see 9K, 14K, or 18K gold Si Dian Jin in more contemporary designs. That appeals to modern brides and in-laws who would prefer jewellery that is not just worn on the wedding day then locked away ever after, but may be enjoyed every day after.
Question 2: “I am shy to bring up the topic with my future in-laws. They don’t even know what Si Dian Jin is or understand the tradition behind it.”
Get your partner to be the middleman. Let him know about this Chinese wedding tradition and have him ascertain his parents’ budget. It is also good for him to sound them out on whether they have specific requirements. Specifics like how many pieces they would like to gift within the budget, and whether the jewellery has to be a particular type of gold etc.
Question 3: “How much should a set of Si Dian Jin cost?”
Typically, a set of Si Dian Jin ranges from $4,000 to $10,000. It differs from family to family so it is most important to find out what your parents in-law are comfortable with. If this is a sensitive topic, I highly recommend that you let your partner discuss with his parents without you around.
Question 4: “How to choose a set that is both to my own and my future in-laws’ liking”
After your partner establishes the budget and requirements from his parents, it’ll be much easier for you to find your jewellery. I recommend starting your search at least 3 months before the ‘Guo Da Li’ ceremony, which is when the jewellery will be gifted to you. I have found that it can take a while to find that elusive wedding jewellery set which ticks all the boxes in the checklist!
One final tip from me, once you have shortlisted your options, initiate a shopping trip with your future in-laws to make them feel involved in the process. They’ll most likely be excited to play a part in this process too!
I hope you have found all these to be useful. I know it seems like a daunting process but trust me, your perfect Si Dian Jin set is out there somewhere so don’t give up!