A simple guide by Andrew Mazzone Design Jewellers
Selecting an engagement ring is arguably one of the most exciting and daunting decisions that you or your partner is bound to go through. There are endless designs and options when it comes to diamond shape and specifications and to make the matter more complicated when it comes to the engagement ring, there are no longer any strict rules. Furthermore, with coloured gemstones becoming increasingly popular it’s a wonder anyone can make the right decision as to what their partners dream engagement ring may be.
More and more are opting to share this special experience to alleviate the pressure from one party and ensure the prospective partners’ happiness, however, this method is not for everyone. Some people thrive in romantic situations and opt for the theatre of surprise in order to fulfil the true romantic fantasy of the “on one knee” proposal.
If you are a romantic at heart and would prefer to surprise your loved one, information can be acquired subtly – regarding basic style. For example, if you both are walking past a jewellers window maybe just stop next time and have a quick peek – I am sure your unsuspecting other will also stop and offer some helpful hints. Friends and siblings can also be invaluable spies when trying to determine a prospective design and gemstone. Proposals with the unset diamond only are also becoming quite popular – keeping the element of surprise and preserving the romance, but allowing your partner to also play a major part in the ring design – taking pressure off you!
Regardless of whether you are planning a surprise engagement or if you would prefer to design the dream ring together, there are a few things that are “need to know” when it comes to selecting the perfect engagement ring for you and your partner.
Do you think a plain band or diamond band would be preferred? Solitaire engagement rings are the best idea if you are unsure of design preferences, as you can focus on making the beautiful centre gemstone the main feature. However, perhaps your partner enjoys vintage style, and would prefer an elegant diamond Halo ring, which is the most highly coveted design at the moment. After all – you don’t have to be a saint to wear a halo.
Although it’s difficult to get it wrong with a beautiful diamond – some people may prefer a favourite coloured gemstone to really get the unique Engagement ring that was always dreamt of. While gemstones such as the very rare Tanzanite and beautiful Aquamarine present beautifully, they are not ideal for everyday wear, such as in an Engagement ring. This is due to the characteristics of the gemstone which affects its longevity and durability of day to day wear. The reason diamonds are the perfect gemstone for an Engagement ring is because they are the hardest compound known to man – meaning they truly “are forever”.
Sapphires and Rubies come in a range of colours and although they are not as hard as diamonds – they are much more durable than other gemstones and therefore are also appropriate for an engagement ring. Small pink sapphires are being incorporated into diamond halos or delicately placed inside the band for a more personal touch – a secret that only you and your loved one share.
If you think a diamond is the right stone for you, you still have a few things to consider. You will undoubtable have heard about the “4 Cs”, which is the process of evaluating a diamond based on four keys factors: cut, colour, clarity and carat weight. The 4 Cs are a wonderful starting point to choosing a beautiful diamond, however evaluating a diamond merely by the 4 Cs is like describing your beloved on the basis of height and eye colour! Two diamonds can look the same “on paper” but can actually be very different when viewed in person. The beauty of a diamond depends more on how well it has been cut than anything else. Understanding the cut of a diamond begins with the shape of the stone eg Round Brilliant, Princess Cut or Emerald Cut. However, in determining the value and beauty of a diamond, the “cut” refers to the stones proportions, symmetry and polish – not shape.
Although nature determines a rough diamonds clarity and colour, the hands of master craftsmen release its fire, brilliance and scintillation. When a diamond is cut to exact proportions – neither too deep or too shallow – light reflects inside the stone from one mirror to another and reappear through the top of the stone, making it seem to radiate from within.
Such diamonds are cut to exacting proportions that maximise the beauty of the diamond – such precision often requires sacrificing some of the rough diamonds carat weight, but truly creates a brilliance that is second to none, or the “Ideal Cut” Diamond.
Come on guys, this is an easy one! While some people have an exact budget and others may be slightly vague, it is a great idea to let your consultants know as soon as possible what you were hoping to spend. This will help us narrow down options such as diamond specifications and source the most beautiful gemstones that are going to suit your budget. When it comes to diamonds, sacrificing carat weight over diamond cut is always gently recommended, as mentioned before these are the diamonds that truly display beauty and brilliance.
It’s possible that this can be estimated, however if the ring is being custom made it is best to know the finger size before manufacturing begins so no further adjustments need be made and your loved one can show off her perfect engagement ring straight away.
Equipped with this information prospective fiancés can walk into their manufacturing jewellers and have a dream ring created within the shortest time possible. However, obtaining this information is not always that easy and subtle hints can quickly evolve into a conspicuous interrogation if you aren’t careful. Nevertheless, if you are concerned that you can’t acquire this information without giving the game away, there’s no need to fret, as that is what the experts are for! Andrew Mazzone Design Jewellers is a family owned and operated business, and has been offering expert advice on Engagement rings and gemstones for over 50 years. Whether you have some idea or are completely clueless – the friendly staff have seen it all and are more than happy to offer advice, organise hand sketches or computer aided designs so you have every opportunity to wow your fiancé.