Three things are required for a spectacular proposal: real love, the age-old question, and a stunning engagement ring. In contrast to the ring, the first two are simple if you've chosen the person you want to spend the rest of your life with. The ring, mine.
How can a piece of jewellery capture your past and present level of devotion and eternal love? It's not an easy undertaking, but with the knowledge of these seven straightforward guidelines, it may be made much simpler.
Work With Your Budget
If you haven't looked into engagement rings before, get ready for a shock: the price is always higher than you anticipate. Fortunately, there are engagement ring options available for every price range. Sometimes, setting different priorities requires getting the ideal diamond at the ideal cost.
Decide how much you can spend without going over budget. Keep in mind that you will have to live with this expense long after you get engaged and even after you get married, especially if you plan to finance the purchase. It may even be your first significant debt as a married couple. So avoid putting your finances in danger by buying an engagement ring.
You should purchase the greatest ring you can afford without incurring significant debt, so forget the old "three months' pay" fallacy. Choose a ring with a somewhat larger table—or surface—area if she is a size queen and your budget isn't super-sized. If the stone isn't as deep, you won't receive as much glitter, but a one-carat ring will appear much larger.
You don't want to compromise the appearance of your stone. Just under the next carat (1.8 instead of 2) can result in a savings of about 20%. And purchasing shy allows you the most flexibility without compromising sparkle when it comes to clarity.
Common diamond engagement ring myths have been dispelled before, and this is an excellent place to do so once more. For example, the 1950s-era urban legend that an engagement ring should cost three months' pay is unfounded.
Here is some much better advice: Find an engagement ring that fits your budget by learning about the 4Cs and doing comparison shopping. Ultimately, what matters is how much love the ring symbolises, not how much money you spend.
The Four Cs
Knowing the 4Cs (colour, cut, clarity, and carat weight) is the first step in purchasing an engagement ring. The 4Cs are the universal benchmark for evaluating diamond quality and serving as a basis for direct comparison across stones.
The 4Cs, in a nutshell, is:
Colour: The lack of colour in a diamond is measured using a scale from D to Z. Less-colored diamonds are more exclusive.
Cut: How effectively a diamond sparkles depends on how well its cut lets in light.
Clarity: The absence of flaws and imperfections is what we call a "clear" diamond.
Carat Weight: How big a diamond seems is based on its weight.
Asking yourself, "What is the most significant C to me?" is the next step after understanding the meaning of the four Cs. By putting the 4Cs in order of importance, you may rapidly reject some diamonds from your search and focus on those that will excite your future bride.
The 4Cs are worth your time understanding: It is used to describe diamond quality on a global scale. Knowing this language gives you the confidence to make a diamond engagement ring purchase.
Think about the four Cs: cut, colour, clarity, and carat when assessing diamond quality. The cut of a diamond is more significant than its carat weight, despite popular belief to the contrary: It controls the amount of sparkle the gem will have.
The term "colour" describes how transparent a diamond is, with D being completely colourless (which is a desirable thing) and Z being distinctly yellow. However, anything graded higher than G can only be distinguished by diamond professionals, so choose a G or H colour grade to receive the best value for your money.
The final factor in clarity is how many flaws the stone has. Again, choose an SI1 or SI2, as your fiancée won't likely see a difference without a magnifying glass, even if a better clarity grading will enhance the value of the stone.
Get Familiar With The Varieties Of Diamond Cuts, Diamond Shapes, And Diamond Cut Quality
Before starting your engagement ring search, you should know the distinctions between a diamond's form, cutting style, and cut quality. When viewed face-up, a diamond's shape describes its contour.
The round diamond is by far the most common diamond shape. The marquise, pear, oval, rectangle, square, and heart are examples of various shapes, also referred to as fancy shapes.
A marquise diamond has 58 facets, known for its long-narrow shape, creating the illusion of a bigger size. This non-traditional diamond shape flatters the wearer, moving with the finger’s natural curves and lines. It’s the perfect diamond shape for vintage styles.
For a highly visible brilliance, a heart diamond is a great choice. This shape symbolises romance and love. It consists of 56 to 58 facets, capturing and magnifying light. On the other hand, a square diamond is set at a 45-degree angle. It makes a unique engagement ring with a modern touch at a more affordable price than a round cut.
The arrangement of the diamond's facets is referred to as the cutting style. For instance, the classic brilliant cutting style with a certain arrangement of 57 or 58 facets is the most popular facet arrangement for round diamonds.
The emerald cut, a square or rectangle with four extended facets along the sides (step cuts) and bevelled corners, is one of the other cutting techniques.
Although it is cut thoughtfully, a radiant cut diamond also has a square or rectangular form.
How beautifully a diamond's facets interact with light is referred to as its cut quality. Table size, girdle thickness, polish, and symmetry might differ among diamonds cut in the same style and form. These variations will affect the cut quality as well as how they appear face-up.
Pick A Metal For The Band.
The band plays a variety of metals, so there's something for everyone. Platinum is the most durable and pure metal, making it a great hypoallergenic alternative for those with sensitive skin.
Also, there's gold, which comes in a wide variety of colours (white, yellow, rose, and even green). There are many more metals to consider besides platinum and gold, such as palladium (which is greyer than platinum) or a recycled metal band, which may contain both platinum and gold. This is like a hybrid of "something new" and "something old."
The overall look of an engagement ring can be altered by selecting a different metal for the band. White gold and platinum are both classic metals with a modern look. Diamonds rated D through J on the colour scale are colourless to nearly colourless, and these stones are also highlighted. Setting one of these gems in prongs made of yellow metal may make it appear more yellow.
If you're a fan of yellow gold but want some contrast with your diamond, you might check out the trend of setting diamonds in white metal prongs or bezels.
Rose gold was a popular choice for engagement rings in the Retro era because it was stylish, looked warm and comforting, and was inexpensive (1935 to the 1950s).
Some people want to melt metals from past rings, including legacy or heirloom jewellery pieces they inherited from their parents or grandparents. If you plan to do this option, find an experienced jeweller and discuss the properties, measurements, and final look.
Your Partner’s Ring Size
Imagine yourself lying on your knees. The person you love most accepts graciously and cheerfully when you ask them to say those four magical words. A tear slides down your face as you place the ring onto their finger and realise it won't go beyond the knuckle.
In reality, it's not the end of the world, and it's a mistake many people make. However, if you're the sort to spend months arranging the ideal proposal, pay attention to even the smallest details.
Suppose you can find a ring that already fits your significant other's ring finger (hint: wait until they are asleep and perform a quick bit of jewellery-related espionage). In that case, you can check an online size chart or bring it to a jewellery specialist at Temples Grace, who will be able to determine the exact size you need.
It's not always possible to resize rings to fit the wearer. For example, many antique rings, bands with engraving or stones that wrap around the entire band, and rings with tension settings cannot be adjusted because doing so requires cutting out a small portion of the ring and then adding extra metal or filling in the gap.
Because of this, it's advisable to start with the correct size. Snatch a frequently used ring from your partner's jewellery box and bring it to the jeweller to covertly find out their ring size. Or, if you're concerned that it won't be noticed, place one of your partner's rings lightly on your finger and mark the band's perimeter with a marker to record how far down it descended.
The jeweller can next use his size equipment to match this measurement.
Your Partner’s Style
One thing to keep in mind throughout the entire purchasing process is that your partner will almost certainly wear this ring forever. (No obligation.) You must therefore be careful to consider your significant other's preferences.
If your love has her heart set on a white gold vintage art deco ring, it doesn't matter if you like yellow gold or have read that colourful diamonds are trending. However, if there isn't a clear trail of engagement ring breadcrumbs to follow, consider getting a second opinion from one of your partner's close friends—someone you can rely on not to leak the details.
A wedding band is meant to be worn every day for the rest of your life. Therefore, it should bring joy to the wearer. That being said, it's time to set your preferences aside and learn her prefered fashion sense. Asking her is the simplest method. However, there are additional options if you want to maintain the air of surprise:
- Observe. How would you describe the typical jewellery she wears? The metal of what colour?
- Inquire with her closest companion. Perhaps you've made a Pinterest board with all her ideal jewellery to propose to her. She probably already told her friend about it, even if she hasn't told you.
- Visit a jewellery store together. Please take note of the motivating factors behind her selecting a given jewellery item.
- Her taste may be considered classic if she has a sophisticated appearance and gravitates towards antiques. A solitaire engagement ring with a round diamond cut in the brilliant style or a rectangle diamond would be classic and beautiful.
Nowadays, it's common for couples to shop for engagement rings together, but if you're a traditionalist who wants to surprise your spouse with a ring they'll love, do some research first.
You can enlist the aid of their close friend or sibling (and swear them to secrecy, of course). If you're determined to keep it a secret, pay attention to the jewellery they currently have on. Platinum and silver or yellow and gold are they used more frequently?
Do they choose minimalist, contemporary items over old jewellery? Please pay close attention for a few weeks while making mental notes to gauge their distinctive approach.
The ring you choose for her engagement will be one she will frequently wear for a very long time. Most women don't appreciate taking off their rings for activities like working or playing sports, so you should think about how the ring will function for the rest of your life. For example, what kind of work does she do?
Does she deal with people all day (as in teaching, nursing, or physical therapy), or does she mostly use her hands (as in cooking, landscaping, or welding), for example? If that's the case, you may look for a ring where the diamonds aren't elevated.
Does she regularly engage in physical activity, such as yoga, skiing, or swimming, or does she prefer to sit on the couch? Think about how she uses her hands, handles equipment, and wears gear in her sport to determine if the ring you picked will need to be removed while she plays.
Does she like to get her hands filthy while she cooks, gardens, or does art? A solitaire in a prong setting is easy to maintain and keep sparkling.
Learn more practical tips for choosing an engagement ring that complements your future wife's lifestyle.
Whether To Pass Down An Heirloom
Others may enjoy the sentimental significance that a family heirloom brings (and may already be daydreaming about donning their mother's or grandmother's ring). In contrast, others may prefer a sparkly new sparkler.
While some people may prefer a new sparkler, others may enjoy the sentimental significance that a family heirloom brings. Family heirlooms are yet another fantastic option for customers shopping for rings on a limited budget.
Suppose you like the idea of proposing a piece of family history but don't have any jewellery that meets the criteria. In that case, you might consider changing an item into a new custom piece. Naturally, you can't do anything without the permission of the owner. Either the metal can be melted down and recast in a new mould, or the gems can be placed in new mounts. Both of these processes are possible.
Pick A Jeweller
Don’t hesitate to ask a jeweller for expert advice about engagement rings, so you can work within your budget without compromising quality. Trusted jewellers have decades of experience crafting the finest engagement and wedding rings. They’re a proud member of respected organisations, such as the Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) and the Australian Opal & Gem Industry Association
It would be best if you got an engagement ring from a jeweller you can trust because they are pricey items to buy. Tip: Start by looking for a jeweller who has a degree from a recognised institution, such as Temple of Grace.
But Don’t Be Tied Down By Them.
Of course, there are exceptions to the four Cs. Sometimes colour or clarity variations are so subtle that they cannot be seen by the naked eye but have a higher value to an appraiser. It's also important to keep in mind that some people like a smaller, more understated stone, while others think coloured gemstones or diamonds make for more contemporary rings.
As much as the carat or cut, other elements like the setting and bandwidth can alter the appearance of a ring.
It's unlikely that you will be an expert in jewellery to know which of these attributes are most vital and, more importantly, how they interact.
Thankfully, every jeweller at Temple & Grace has received training in the art of diamond spotting and can assist you in selecting the ideal stone for you at the ideal price.
Purchasing an engagement ring is a significant and long-lasting investment. You wouldn't purchase a car without a warranty or insurance; the same goes for an engagement ring.
It's especially important to think about potential losses when dealing with something that small and valuable, like theft, damage, or an odd disappearance (bathroom sinks are well known for devouring beloved diamond rings). Make sure the jeweller who sells you the ring gives a guarantee, and factor the cost of insurance into your spending plan.
Buying an engagement ring should be treated as a once-in-a-lifetime experience, something to be savoured and obsessed over for as long as necessary. Do you think you've found the one after just one shopping trip? Cool.
Write it down, snap some pics, see if it'll sell out, then move on. Before you spend any money, be sure you've exhausted all your options by looking wherever you can, including online and in traditional stores. Then, put that deadline out of your mind until you know that the ring is perfect for your partner.
Now that you've found the ideal engagement ring, it's time to protect it with insurance. If the ring were lost or stolen, to say that you would be disappointed would be an understatement.
Adding the ring as a "floater" to your existing homeowners' or renters' insurance policy is the simplest option. Although this may cause your premiums to rise somewhat, the additional protection it provides is priceless. (If you own a home or rent an apartment and don't have insurance, you should get it immediately.) If you and your fiancée do not yet live together, it is imperative that the ring be insured in the name of the person who will be wearing it.
FAQs About Wedding
When looking for an engagement ring, the setting is the component that should typically come first on the shopping list. The main stone (or stones) will be held in place by this portion of the ring; common types of settings for engagement rings include the halo, prong, and split-shank designs. You will also need to determine the metal you want the engagement ring to be made of before choosing the ring's setting.