How to Buy an Engagement Ring
4 Jan 2016
This time of year, spring through to summer, sees jewellery stores starting to flood with ladies and gents looking for that perfect engagement ring. Some are well prepared and know exactly what they are after and for others it can be, understandably, an overwhelming experience.
With a little preparation, purchasing an engagement ring can be one of the most enjoyable and educational experiences. To help you prepare for what is ahead, here is our top 8 tips to give you the confidence to go out and enjoy this exciting process!
Whether it’s a surprise engagement ring or you and your partner are choosing the ring together it is a recommended to familiarise yourself with the styles you are after before stepping into a jewellers. Without knowing what style you like, walking into a jewellery store with a vast range of styles on offer can be overwhelming. Narrow your options down and gather visual images from sources such as Pinterest or magazines. Visual references will help you communicate your ideas to your jeweller and ensure you are on the same page.
Worried about the hard salesman, many like to keep their budget close to their chest. However, when it comes to an engagement ring it is helpful if you can provide your jeweller with an idea of what your engagement ring budget is. This will allow them to help you come up with a beautiful design and find a perfect diamond or gemstone that fits within your means. Most importantly this will avoid the unnecessary temptation / or disappointment of viewing pieces that exceed your budget.
3. The 4C’s
When it comes to engagement ring shopping one of the first things you will notice is that there is a lot of jewellery lingo. At the top of the list is the 4c’s (carat, cut, colour and clarity), the grading system used to determine a diamonds quality. Have a read of our 4c’s guide to give yourself the rundown prior to your appointment.
4. Diamonds or Gemstones
Diamonds are not the only option. More and more people these days are opting for a splash of colour. Sapphires are the most popular choice when it comes to coloured gemstone engagement rings and what many don’t realise is that they come in a wide variety of colours not just the popular blue sapphire similar to the one worn by Princess Diana and now Princess Kate.
5. The Wedding Ring
It’s a safe bet that if you are looking for an engagement ring it will not be so long until you are on the market for a wedding ring. So why not consider if you would like your wedding ring to fit and match your engagement ring. By doing this your jeweller can take this into consideration when designing your engagement ring.
6. The Metal
First you need to decide on the colour; white, yellow or pink.The popular choice is white metals with your main options being platinum, white gold and occasionally palladium. Yellow gold is beautiful, complementing darker skin tones beautifully and also looks fantastic in vintage style designs. The other option is rose gold, arguably the metal choice on the rise, you only need to flick through magazines to see just how popular this beautiful soft feminine colour is. Rose gold will suit almost every skin tone, so if you too have fallen in love with this beautiful metal, we say go for it!
7. Diamond / Gemstone Shape
Once you have decided between a diamond or coloured gemstone you need to think of the shape. Round brilliant diamonds tend to be the most popular choice, but, this is just one of many. For those that like Art Deco designs with strong lines and symmetry you may opt for an asscher, princess or emerald cut diamond. Otherwise ovals, marquise and cushion cut diamonds all create beautiful curves within any design.
8. Allow Plenty of Time
This is one of the most important tips! Custom making a design will take time and you don’t want the pressure of time to stop you from getting the design just right. If you are after a very specific or rare diamond / gemstone keep in mind that this may add time. It is important to remember to factor in the time it will take to make the ring. Most jewellers will allow 4-5 weeks to custom make an engagement ring and that's only when you have decided on the design. We suggest allowing a couple of months from the initial design stage to the moment you collect the final piece.