We’re still picking up our collective jaws off the floor over Queen Céline’s latest Instagram masterpiece: hours before Kawhi Leonard finally received his NBA championship ring, Céline Dion stunned everyone with a replica ring so massive it wrapped around multiple fingers.
But it turns out, Dion’s ring is more flash than cash: the accessory is a novelty prop belonging to Raptor, the team’s mascot. What’s more, the ring wasn’t made the old-fashioned way by a jeweller; it was modelled and designed by an engineer.
The ring is one of three created by Jacob Mostoller for the Toronto Raptors. Among sports fans, he’s better known as Ringo the Ringtail, the mascot for the American Hockey League’s Texas Stars, and the go-to person for accessories that will fit any claw or paw perfectly.
Big rings are a mascot tradition
When he’s not hyping up hockey fans, Mostoller moonlights as the brains behind Engineered to Entertain, a side-business where his mechanical engineering background comes in handy making props for fellow mascots from different sports leagues across North America. His most popular props are super-sized championship rings that his furry and feathery colleagues wear alongside their athletes.
The rings that adorn the Raptors’ hands are record-breaking. Peter Kanis, president of Barron, the company which makes the championship rings, told Global News that they’re the biggest they’ve made for the NBA.
Watch: Toronto Raptors NBA Championship Rings Unveiled. Story continues below.
Using 14-karat yellow gold and over 650 diamonds, it took Barron two months to create the basketball team’s custom jewellery.
Some were probably thinking it cost her a fortune, what with its appearance suggesting a ridiculous amount of precious stones and metals.
Thanks to 3D-printing technology, it didn’t take Mostoller nearly as much time or as many expensive materials to make the ring Dion was seen with. He was able to create a mascot-approved replica of their rings from start to finish shortly after receiving a request.
“All of the pieces were finished in only a few days, and the rest of the work was sanding, painting and adding the Swarovski crystals,” he told MakerGear.
Make your own NBA championship ring
As the rings were ordered by the Raptors, it’s unlikely Dion was able to keep the prop. But if the Canadian singer is looking for her own to treasure, she’s in luck: 3D-printing is accessible to anyone with access to the hardware. While less pricey than buying a championship ring, it doesn’t come cheap. Mostoller himself used the MakerGear M3-ID printer, which retails for around $4,349.
That’s not to mention the attention to detail and design needed to create a realistic imitation of a professional-calibre ring.
If you’d prefer to skip the hassle and hire a creator like Mostoller, you’d be in good hands. Even if the rings are meant as mascot props, Céline proves that a replica can be just as show-stopping.
Also on HuffPost: