Shopping for an engagement ring can be a daunting prospect. The different shapes and styles offered can be as varied as the women we love. How do you know that your future fiancé will like what you pick out? Here are a few tips to help you find a ring that your love is sure to appreciate.
1) Know your fiancé’s style and taste. While this may seem obvious, it’s probably the most important rule and an often overlooked one. Take some time to observe how your partner carries herself and dresses. Does she wear many accessories at once, or keep her look simple and clean? A woman who wears minimal jewelry and simple clothing is likely to enjoy a clean looking, single-set stone without a lot of bells and whistles. If your girlfriend loves to wear shiny things, compliment her with a ring of many sparkles and stones.
2) Size Matters… for some. Two things to consider when shopping for a ring are carat size and stone quality. Depending on your budget, you may be able to go with one or the other, or both. If you know that your girlfriend will be wowed with a large stone but don’t have a huge budget, then go for a ring with less clarity. If you’re shopping for a dreamer who can be lost staring at a shiny thing for hours, then quality and cut are king.
3) Shape and setting create the overall look. The way your diamond is cut and placed on the ring shapes the overall look of the package. Round and oval cuts are classic and hard to go wrong with. If your girlfriend favors a vintage aesthetic, then a pear or emerald cut is sure to please. A stone can be set directly into a band, giving a seamless look, or held above the band with prongs, letting light hit the diamond from different angles and creating better shine. Once you’ve picked out the stone you want, work with your jeweler to ensure that the setting and band complement the diamond.
4) Consider alternatives to diamonds. If you’ve ever heard your girlfriend talk about “blood diamonds”, this is a good indication that she may prefer a substitute on her finger. There are several alternatives to the traditional diamond, which is notorious for being harvested in less than ideal manners. Look into colored precious stones and man-made diamond substitutes, which are cheaper and offer the same look and shine as diamonds.
5) Ask her what she likes. For some people this comes up naturally in conversations about the future. “We’ll have this many kids, and your ring will look like what again?” If this method makes you uncomfortable, then sneak around the issue. Ask her what kind of jewelry she likes in general, or take her shopping to pick out earrings or a necklace well in advance to the proposed engagement date. Chances are pretty strong that if you take her in a shop with engagement rings on display that she will point out to you the ones she favors.
Evelyn Smith is a freelance writer based out of Brownsville, TX. She is happily married with two dogs, and in her free time enjoys crafting unique jewelry creations for her friends and family.