Confidently say “yes” to the ring every day you celebrate life together.
1. The best way to find your perfect ring is to find your perfect jeweler.
When you decide to join your life with another person, you understand that it is a new level of commitment. In the same vein, buying an engagement ring is a new level of purchasing - one that is different from the fashion jewelry bought as gifts over the years. In short, the jeweler you select for your ring purchase will most likely become a part of you and your partner’s life.
With this in mind, there is a different level of trust that is inherent in the relationship between you and the jeweler you choose. A good jeweler knows that they will be an ongoing part of the life of your ring. They should be the one you come to count on for maintenance, repairs, cleanings, appraisals, or upgrades. A good jeweler wants their relationship with you to be as positive on your 10th wedding anniversary as it was the day you purchased your ring. They will prioritize your relationship, not the sale.
Once you have found the right jeweler, you will easily find the right ring.
2. Your priorities should steer the decision making.
Before you set foot in a jewelry store, pick 1-2 “non-negotiables” you have regarding your ring purchase. Really give some thought to this and maybe even write them down. Don’t be afraid of being too honest or too specific. Some examples include:
“I want the biggest stone money can buy.”
“I won’t spend more than $5,000.”
“The quality of the mount is the most important thing - I don't ever want to worry about losing my stone.”
If you end up realizing that what you wanted isn’t realistic (for example the size and quality diamond you were thinking at a certain price) you can sit back and reexamine them. A good jeweler will respect your priorities, be creative, and guide you to the perfect piece within your realistic zone.
3. Understand the subjective nature of jewelry selection, and strongly consider bringing someone with you.
Purchasing this major gift is excellent practice in understanding what is important to your significant other. Be aware that a diamond looks different to different people. A characteristic you thought was minor could be the thing that irks your fiance every time she looks at it. Observe the piece not just under the sparkly lights in the jewelry store, but also in natural light and fluorescent (office) light. And whenever possible, bring someone with you for a second opinion. If it makes sense for that person to be your significant other, that’s fantastic.
You should choose a piece because you love it. You can research and read lab reports all you want, but in the end, you should trust your gut above any report.
4. Two rings that look the same from two different places rarely are the same.
There is a lot of unclear marketing out there, which makes determining jewelry quality very confusing to customers. Between natural and man-made diamonds, stable and unstable diamond treatments, and diamond look alikes, the landscape can be tricky to navigate. Even with lab reports, the diamond industry is not perfectly standardized.
You’ll want to pay close attention to manufacturing details, like the quality of the setting and the longevity and durability of the design. Ultimately, having an expert in the jewelry field review your piece before purchase will prove more than worth it in the long run.
5. You don’t have to know everything today.
Ultimately, getting engaged is about choosing to celebrate life together with each other. What a joy!
Its ok to laugh, cry and for your sweaty hands to shake. Dream about your life together, look around and enjoy the process.
Your future is unknown. Your style may change and you may reset your stone. You might upgrade your diamond when you hit a milestone. Give yourself permission to change, grow and walk into your future hand in hand.