Extraordinary Engagement Rings

Tuesday, June 15, 2010



I was recently in conversation with a friend of mine who was thinking of proposing to this girlfriend. He wanted my advice on what type of ring to get her. I asked him if he talked to her about what sort of ring she liked, but he said he wanted to do it the old-fashioned way and completely surprise her with a ring he picked out himself. I told him I would present to him some ideas, but ultimately he knows what looks good or doesn't look good to him and hopefully what would be a good fit for his bride-to-be.

I'm by no means an expert on this subject but I do remember going through this when my husband and I were talking about getting engaged. He wanted to know what I liked which prompted us to do some research beyond what looked good.

When picking out an engagement ring, there are many obvious factors to consider, such as educating yourself on the 4C's: click here to read more about the cut/color/clarity/carat of a diamond. Also, purchasing something that's just as much a reflection of her style and personality as much as it fits into your budget. This is one of those lifetime keepsakes, so it's best not to feel rushed into a purchase. Bottomline, no matter what ring you end up with, it's a symbol of your love and committment to one another, so walk in confidence knowing that she'll love the ring you pick out especially for her!

A few ideas to consider:

Does she even like diamonds?
The quick and general answer is, what girl doesn't like diamonds? Not every girl does.  I know for me, I seriously considered getting a gemstone because I loved the uniqueness of a non-diamond. If your girlfriend is eco-conscious, the thought of a diamond might not be high on her wish list. If this is the case, you can sure save some serious money. Center stones weren't popular back in the day, I've seen some great no stone wedding bands serve as engagement rings. What's her favorite color? There are plenty of gorgeous gems and man-made diamonds that look like a fortune but won't break your bank.

Do you have a family gem/ring you can pass on?
Again, you could save $ on the centerstone or the entire ring, or you can also choose to get it re-set or re-dipped, let's say for example if the original ring was yellow gold and she prefers white gold. What a sentimental way to pass on a timeless family heirloom!


Do you want to purchase a wedding set so you don't have to worry about finding a matching band later?
This can be a cost-effective method and a guarantee that the wedding band was made to fit the e-ring. But if you don't have the budget for the set upfront, the w-band is always something you can purchase later. I personally loved the idea of picking out a separate wedding band and mix-matching it with my e-ring. Since my fingers aren't so long and my radiant center stone was 1.5c, I wanted a thinner band so my finger space wouldn't be so crammed. While that was a huge factor for me, other women may actually prefer that look.

What is her style?
Does she enjoy going to flea markets and collecting antique oddities?  Is she constantly inspired by the latest celebrity trends or is she simple and hardly wears jewelry? Is she eyeing a certain girlfriend's ring or admiring a particular setting at the jewelry store? Asking yourself these questions and paying attention to the little details that make her smile can help give you a good starting point.

Meanwhile, here are a few stunning options for colored, non-traditional and vintage styles, since I figured most of us know what a classic solitaire looks like.

Photo Credits:
Emerald Center stone vintage ring from INTA Gems
Verragio Paradiso Split shank ring, Ritani Sapphire halo ring
Tacori white gold ring with side stones, Oval white gold ring with side stones
Padparadscha cushion cut halo ring by The Natural Sapphire Co, Ritani asscher halo ring
Colored Solitaires by LaurenK, Solitaire Yellow gold ring with side stones
Green tourmaline ring, Tacori Rose Gold Twist band ring
Cognac Diamond ring by Judith Arnell, Amethyst halo ring by Kranich





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