Everything You Need To Know About Engagement Ring Shopping
Whether you’re ready to drop down on one knee, or thumbing social media for dream ring ideas, shopping for the perfect engagement ring can be a challenging and stressful experience. After all, an engagement ring is a symbol of the deep, beautiful love and commitment between you and your partner, soon to be fiancé. So how can you best select the most important piece of jewelry you’ll ever purchase? They say pressure makes diamonds, and fortunately, wedding planners at The Manor, will help ease the pressure and best guide your decision to meet your partner’s expectations and your budget. The wedding planners at The Manor share everything you need to know about engagement ring shopping.
How To Plan Your Budget
Before you enter any jewelry store and get distracted by shiny bling, chat with sales people, or even online shop, be sure to set up a clear budget. Doing so will allow you to set up a realistic expectation about what you can afford or what you will finance, before wasting time shopping for an engagement ring out of your price range. Also, consider factoring in the price it will cost to insure the ring. Despite what preconceived notions of savings means, the “three month’s salary rule” is outdated; it was based off of gross income rather than net.
The national average of wedding planning sources estimate an engagement ring to cost approximately $6,000.00. But, the design of the ring greatly affects the pretty price of the diamond. For example. Smaller diamonds surrounding the stone add up quickly. Meanwhile the quality of the diamond can be more expensive than the size of the carat. Like any large financial decision, wedding planners advise weighing out what works in favor of your current financial situation and future.
What Are The Four Cs of Diamonds?
There are four main pillars to finding the perfect stone that you will need to consider when shopping for an engagement ring. Familiarize yourself with these important factors before you shop:
1.) Cut– how the diamond is cut (shaped) has the greatest influence on its sparkle and price. According to Blue Nile diamond experts, when a diamond is cut with the proper proportions, light shines out of the top of the diamond. But, if the cut is too shallow, light leaks out of the bottom; too deep and it escapes out of the side. Additionally the shape of the diamond directly affects the price; a round and oval cut smaller stone is typically more expensive than a larger carat pear-shaped or princess-cut. Popular diamond shapes include: cushion, emerald, heart, marquise, pear, princess, radiant, round, oval, square, and rectangle or a traditional diamond.
2.) Color– Each color diamond is measured by a letter grade. This is what the naked eye notices next after the diamond’s sparkle. A colorless diamond generally receives a grade D-F, whereas almost colorless diamonds jewelers categorize grades G-J. For example, choosing a diamond that has a grade of “H” or higher, eliminates a yellowy tint. Bottom line, the less colorful the diamond is the higher the color grade. And be sure to budget accordingly because there is a stark price difference between a J and D color.
3.) Clarity– a diamond is not perfect, containing at least one tiny imperfections, called inclusions. The fewer and less visible these inclusions are, the higher the clarity grade of the diamond. To ensure your ring has minimal cloudiness, opt for “Eye-Clean” diamonds, graded VS1 and higher. In like manner, the price difference between an SI1 and flawless diamond is astronomical. Since most inclusions are microscopic, this is often the least important factor when selecting an engagement ring.
4.) Carat– this refers to the weight of a diamond. Many mistakenly believe that carat to be the size of the diamond. When perusing engagement, it is best to consider how the cut and carat will look together. A larger carat diamond such as a 3ct or 4ct with a poor cut grade can appear smaller than a 1ct or 1.5ct diamond with a higher cut grade.
Finding Your Engagement Ring Style
Engagement ring shopping does not have to be a solo effort. If you are struggling to choose a ring that you know your partner will love, involve them in the ring selection process. It is currently a top wedding trend for the bride to be involved in designing or selecting her own engagement ring. Giving your special someone the option to choose his or her own ring does not ruin the magic of the proposal itself. The proposal can still be a surprise but now you just have the added comfort of knowing the bride-to-be already loves her engagement ring (which is reassuring).
When brainstorming the perfect ring for your significant other take into consideration their style the jewelry they wear now, lifestyle, and job. This will help you to determine what’s appropriate, an what to avoid. A fashionista may desire a large center stone with a halo or diamond band. Alternatively, you can choose a more conservative and simple design with an understated solitaire diamond with an unadorned band. Also, don’t be shy, use your partner’s best friends and family to help give insight.
Understanding Engagement Ring Design Details
Jewelers advise on visualizing the stone with it’s setting and band. Your ring setting is made up of different design elements such as around the girdle and basket, which hold the stone all while looking aesthetically pleasing. Typical ring setting styles include “Prong,” “Tension,” “Bezel,” “Channel,” and “Pavé.” Metals for the engagement ring band are often silver, platinum, white gold, yellow gold, palladium, and rose gold. But keep in mind the metal does not make it more functional. Silver is more durable and scratch resistant, and looks almost identical to platinum; yet platinum is much more expensive. For a more unique look, you have the option of colored diamonds such as pink, yellow or chocolate. You also do not have to limit engagement rings to diamonds; other beautiful stones can suffice such as gemstones like rubies, sapphires, emeralds, or citrine.
Popping The Question
Your engagement ring will always be with your loved one, as an ever-present reminder of the moment you decided to spend your lives together. So before you empty your wallet and commit to the perfect engagement ring, its better to be safe than sorry. Make sure that you buy that stunning ring certified. Doing so avoids fluffing grades and carat counts from non name brand companies who may have a poor reputation. Furthermore, make sure to take the time to match the certificate to your ring; you can find the identifier on the girdle portion of the setting. An engagement ring is a treasure, one your loved one will gawk at for years to come, so it is important to consider getting that prized possession insured. To help make your dreams of the perfect proposal come to life, contact a top wedding venue in the New Jersey area today.