Selecting an engagement ring for your future spouse can be one of the most daunting tasks a romantic can undertake. You’ve found the “one” to be your life partner and want to find the “perfect” ring he or she will love and want to show off to friends and family.
There are many choices, but fear not, we’ve put together six steps to finding the perfect engagement ring for your future spouse, courtesy of the GIA.
- Make it a surprise. While the trend of couples shopping together for an engagement ring is on the rise, we suggest you try to figure out what he or she will like on your own. Yes, it will take some detective work, but if you get it right, the reward will pay dividends. There are few opportunities for a really big surprise in life—let your engagement ring be one of them.
- Decide on and stick to your budget. Like any major purchase, decide on what you can comfortably afford, and stick to it. Then do your due diligence so you can save money. Spending more than you have to won’t make the ring any nicer than it is. In fact, getting a good deal may endear you even more to your future spouse. Rather than expensive retail jewelry stores in malls (remember, you’re paying higher mark ups), consider visiting a high-end pawn shop like Empire Jewelers for beautiful and unique pieces at a fraction of the cost.
- Pay attention to what they wear. You could ask one of their close friends for advice on the kind of ring he or she would like, but you run the risk of them talking and ruining the surprise. We suggest putting on your detective hat and paying attention to what your SO is wearing from day to day. Are the rings and other pieces classic and traditional or funky and modern? Are they full of bling or more subdued? If you buy something similar to what he or she already likes, you’ll probably choose the right one.
- Know their ring size. This is an important one, because you’ll want to know the ring will fit when you present it. If he or she wears rings, borrow one they already own. Trace the inner circle on a piece of paper, or press the ring into a bar of soap for an impression. You can also slide it down one of your own fingers and draw a line where it stops. A jeweler can use these measurements to identify his or her approximate ring size.
- Know what diamond shape suits him or her. After determining the style and ring size, you’ll need to pick a design. As your future spouse will be wearing this ring every day during his or her engagement and into your married life, it really needs to fit their personality. To help you decide, here are some popular engagement ring designs to consider for him or her:
Engagement ring designs for women:
Solitaire – Featuring a single stone, this is the most popular choice in engagement rings. Solitaires can be set with four prongs or six prongs. A four-prong-setting shows more of the diamond, but a six-prong setting is often more secure.
Side stones – Diamonds or other gemstones, flank the main stone for additional sparkle or color. Popular side-stone settings include ”channel,” which protects stones by keeping them flush, and ”bar channel” which allows more light to enter the sides tones.
Three Stone – One diamond for the past, one for the present, and one for the future. Typically, the center diamond is larger than the two side stones.
Pavé (pah-vey) – The main stone is surrounded by tiny diamonds to add sparkle and the illusion of greater size.
Engagement ring designs for men:
In addition to traditional gold and platinum, men’s engagement and wedding rings come in an array of unique, modern metals. Select from titanium, zirconium, tungsten carbide, and steel. Even natural materials, such as wood are becoming increasingly popular. Men may also choose a ring that’s accented with stones such as black diamonds for added brilliance and intrigue. Plain bands featuring textural elements such as a woven or hammered design are also quite popular.
6. Create an experience. Once you’ve made the effort and decided on the ring you think your loved one will truly cherish, create a proposal experience that’s unique to your relationship. Whether together you enjoy sports, horseback riding, taking in shows or have a favorite romantic hiking spot, create one of the fondest experiences you can and make a memory to last your lifetime together.
If you’re looking for a fine diamond engagement ring, make sure to visit Empire’s eBay store for an incredible selection of hundreds of high-quality new and estate diamond rings at up to 70 percent off what you would pay at retail.