Once upon a time, a man gave an engagement ring to a woman to symbolise the eternity of their love. The groom to be was expected to spend two months of wages on a ring and they were expected to select the ring with no guidance from their bride to be. While the symbol of the ring still remains the same, times have well and truly changed. There is no set way to propose, in fact more and more partners are getting involved in the selection process of a ring. We have seen so many new and beautiful traditions emerging, like custom engravings or initials built into the band, some couples even shop together to select the perfect ring. The proposal is an entirely personal experience and completely dependent on the couple. Whatever you have decided we are sure this moment will be a memory you carry with you for a lifetime.
If you are however, having trouble understanding the differences between bands, stones and sizing, this article is for you!
Men– if you have decided to do this solo, we have a few tips! Firstly, if you’re struggling to find out the style she wants, head to her Pinterest page, you might find a few pins here! Also check out her Instagram, she is bound to be following a few ring designers already which might steer you in the right direction. And if all else fails, you might find a few screen shots in her photo gallery on her phone… we aren’t promoting snooping unless its in the name of love 😉 But, if none of this helps, trust your gut. You know her better than anyone else and she will be over the moon to be receiving such a priceless gift from you.
Ladies- if you are involved in the selection process, good for you! Make sure you try on all different styles and colours. You might find that what you thought your dream ring would be isn’t your dream at all. Or if you are getting a custom ring made, the designer will be able to combine all the elements you love!
Here’s what you need to know
1. Selecting The Stone
Most engagement rings selected still to this day are diamonds (it’s almost an unwritten rule) but as we said before, old traditions shouldn’t hold you back. If you love something that isn’t a diamond then select the stone you love. We have seen some truly gorgeous engagement rings in rubies or emeralds, that are just as elegant and just as loved. Make sure you consider all your options. Look around at different stores and remember, google is your best friend when finding different stones!
2. Selecting The Shape of The stone
There are a lot of different shapes when it comes to engagement ring shopping – pear, cushion, round, princess, marquise, emerald or heart cut… it’s a big decision! Here is our beginners guide to navigating this decision
Round Cut Diamond
It’s a classic look and sure to produce the most sparkle! The sparkle does make it appear bigger and can be seen sparkling from a mile away, but the round diamond won’t have the largest “face-up area”. Round diamonds are the most popular choice for engagement rings and so naturally they are the most expensive.
Pear Cut Diamond
Pear cut diamonds are a unique shape and they have been growing in popularity over recent years.
Princess Cut Diamond
The princess cut is a beautiful ring and comes in about 25-35% cheaper than a round cut diamond, but the long diagonal cut makes the stone appear much larger than it is.
Oval Cut Diamond
Oval diamonds have the brilliance that a round possesses but because of the shape, they appear a lot longer on the finger.
Cushion Cut Diamond
Cushion cuts are the oldest style, but in recent years they have become more and more popular. The angles in this cut allow for flashes of coloured light, which is a beautiful statement for any bride to be.
Emerald Cut Diamond
The emerald cut is a slimming cut, making fingers appear longer. The diamond itself is often described as having a “hall of mirrors effect” and they reflect light.
Marquise Cut Diamonds
These diamonds have an elongated shape, making the diamond itself look much larger on the finger.
Heart Cut Diamond
The heart shape diamond is exactly how it sounds – the shape of a heart. It is a romantic symbol and a great selection for an engagement ring.
3. The Carat
The carat refers to the size and weight of the diamond. This decision is really dependent on your budget and personal preference. Carat in metal refers to the amount of gold in the band. Whether it’s white gold, rose gold or yellow gold selection you have made for the band – 24ct is the purest form of gold available. 18ct contains 75%, 14ct is 58.5% and 10ct contains 41.6%.
4. The Setting
This decision refers to whether you would like a solitaire which is a single diamond set or additional stones. The halo features a diamond in the center and it is surrounded by smaller diamonds making it look larger. Three stones are also a popular choice and symbolizes the past, present and the future. There are so many setting options, talk to your ring designer about the different options available.