Images courtesy of beavela
After months, perhaps years, you’re ready to take the monumental step. You’re going to propose. Asking the question is the easy part. Buying the ring? Well, that entails a little more work.
Maybe you’ve asked her sister what she wants. Maybe you spotted her eying something in a magazine. Maybe you’ve discussed the purchase with her. But when it comes to standing in the store, staring at options, you might feel overwhelmed. Fortunately, jewelers have been helping the unsure and downright clueless for years. You just have to know what to ask.
Settings–as in the type of band the stone is placed–come in many varieties. What are your setting options? Are some more popular than others and why? What type of settings are best for particular lifestyles? If she’s an active individual, always heading out for some type of outdoor adventure, a certain setting may be more likely to damage than others. You also want to make sure you don’t end up getting something super trendy that isn’t going to feel timeless in 20 years.
Stones are rated by clarity and carat. Clarity refers to the number of imperfections the stone has, such as mixes of other minerals. The fewer imperfections, the more expensive the diamond becomes. Carat refers to the weight, and, just as you probably guessed, the higher the carat, the more it will affect your wallet. Brush up on this info before you hit the jewelry store, but also ask about the clarity and carat of the different rings you’re considering to see if there’s a huge difference. One of the most important considerations is the cut, or shape, of the stone. Ask if some cuts require more upkeep than others to get an idea of future care. You can also ask for an opinion of what cuts typically reflect certain styles and tastes, and which cuts are more popular.
Once you decide on a ring, ask about how to care for it. What’s the proper way to clean the ring? To store it? How often should it be looked at by a jeweler for maintenance, and what does maintenance entail? You want to make sure you’re doing everything to keep the stone and setting protected for years to come. In addition, ask what types of problems might occur to learn how to avoid them. Accidents happen, though, which is why it’s good to insure the ring for protection.
The Little Details
Before you sign on the dotted line, ask about the policies on making changes to the ring once purchased. Can it be resized? Can the setting be changed? Can it be exchanged or returned? While you know she’s going to say yes and love everything about the ring you picked, it’s always good to be safe. Resizing is probably the most important thing to know, because even if her mom is positive she wears a size 6, maybe that’s what she wore in 6th grade and she really needs a 7 now. This is a common need for newly engaged couples, so don’t sweat it if it’s not a perfect fit. Just know all of the policies before you take the plunge.
Don’t panic. Ask your questions, take a breath, and decide. She’ll love it.
January 30, 2013