An engagement ring is one of the most important jewelry choices a man will make in his life. Though some couples have begun to pick the ring out together beforehand, for many men, it’s a choice they’ll have to make largely on their own, with perhaps help from friends and family and any hints she’s dropped along the way. Though custom engagement rings and engagement rings with more unusual stones and style have become popular recently, diamond jewelry is still the top choice, by and large. Luckily, most sales representatives at a jewelry store have seen hundreds, if not thousands, of young men just like you looking for guidance and are ready and willing to help out. If you’re looking at custom wedding rings or engagement rings, sometimes going online might be a good choice. It might help you make contact with a jeweler or artisan who can craft the perfect ring design you’ve been looking for.
How Do I Pick the Perfect Engagement Ring?
The biggest thing here is paying attention. If you’ve been with your girlfriend-soon-to-be-fiancé for awhile, you probably know what her style is like. If she doesn’t wear a lot of jewelry, you might opt for something a bit more subtle and minimalist. Likewise, if she frequently wears jewelry, but the same, understated pieces everyday, you won’t want to get her a huge, dazzling rock.
Consult with close friends and family, as they should also be able to advise generally on style and then also weigh in on any options you’re considering. Social media can also help — many women often have a few ideas about what kind of rings they’d like, and their Pinterest, for example, can be a gold mine for someone looking for ideas.
What Should I Bring With Me to the Jewelry Store?
Even if you’re really not sure what kind of ring to get, you should have some kind of idea of your girlfriend’s personal style, since the people at the jewelry store will likely ask what kinds of jewelry she gravitates towards. You should also know her ring size — see if you can discreetly take a ring from her jewelry box to be sure, but working it into casual conversation might also be possible.
You should also have an idea of your budget. Given that the average cost of a diamond engagement ring is a little over $5,500 — and jewelry stores can be overwhelming — you want to go in with a firm game plan on that end. Indeed, in 2012, diamond engagement rings made up around $5 billion in jewelry sales in the United States.
You might also want to have a sense for whether you want the wedding ring to match the engagement ring. Some rings are sold in pairs, especially if the cut is a little different — some wedding rings might not be a plain band, but have a dip to accommodate a halo setting, for example.
How Would I Go About Creating a Custom Ring?
Time definitely matters here, since it will have to be made from scratch. Plan way ahead of when you want to propose, to allow for any delays. And you’ll want to make absolutely certain that the ring is the right size. You’ll need a jeweler whose design and aesthetics match with yours (or for your vision with the ring). You want a jeweler who comes highly recommended and has a nice collection of work to show you.
For this, you’ll also need to know the setting, style, and stone you want. (It should be no surprise that couples who go for custom rings often do it together.) Most designers will show you sketches and even a wax model to give you an idea of what the finished product will look like as well.
Though purchasing an engagement ring is a big step, it doesn’t have to be as daunting as it often feels. You should have a good idea of the style of the woman you’re about to marry anyway, and consultation with friends, family, social media, and even (subtly) with the woman herself can all help you find the perfect ring.