What will you say if I’ll tell you that choosing perfect engagement ring can be real fun? Let me show you how. Follow our easy 6 steps stress free guide.
CHOOSE YOUR STONE
Traditionally engagement rings are believed to be diamond solitaires. But the number of couples that are choosing other precious and semi-precious gemstones is fast growing. The important thing to remember while making this decision is that your wife to be will wear it for the rest of her life, so it’s crucial you choose the ring that stands the test of time.
UNDERSTAND YOUR STONE
With diamonds, there are four factors to be considered – colour, clarity, cut and carat.
All D-Z diamonds are considered white, even though they contain varying degrees of colour. True fancy coloured diamonds (such as yellows, pinks, and blues) are graded on a separate colour scale.
- D – F
- Diamonds in this category are very rarer and more expensive.
- G – J
- NEAR COLORLESS
- Diamonds in this category are commonly used in fine jewellery.
- K- M
- Diamonds in this category have a slight body colour tint that is somewhat noticeable
- VERY LIGHT
- This colour range may resemble those of light corn oils.
- LIGHT YELLOW
- Obvious yellow tints may be seen in these diamonds. These stones may resemble heavier
Most diamonds found in jewellery stores run from colourless to near-colourless, with slight hints of yellow or brown.
Clarity is the second important factor to consider when buying a diamond. The scale begins at internally flawless IF and proceeds through several grades of clarity depending on the size and number of inclusions present in a stone. The scale ends at imperfect.
The GIA Diamond Clarity Scale has 6 categories:
- FL – Flawless- No inclusions and no blemishes visible under 10x magnification
- IF -Internally Flawless- No inclusions visible under 10x magnification
- VVS1 &VVS2-Very, Very Slightly Included -Inclusions so slight they are difficult for a skilled grader to see under 10x magnification
- VS1 & VS2-Very Slightly Included- Inclusions are observed with effort under 10x magnification
- SI1 & SI2– Slightly Included- Inclusions are noticeable under 10x magnification
- I1, I2, and I3– Included- Inclusions are obvious under 10x magnification which will affect transparency and brilliance
Diamonds that are imperfect in clarity have very obvious inclusions, which can be seen by the naked eye.
A well-cut diamond will internally reflect light from one mirror-like facet to another and reflect it through the top of the stone. This will display a brilliance and fire, thereby placing well-cut diamonds higher on the Diamond Quality Pyramid than deep or shallow-cut diamonds. Diamonds that are cut too deep or too shallow lose the light through the side or bottom of the stone resulting in less brilliance and eventually, value.
The GIA Diamond Cut Scale for standard Round Brilliant Diamonds contains 5 grades:
- Very Good
Non-round shaped diamonds, also known as fancy shapes, will have their own guidelines to be considered well-cut.
Carat is often confused with size even though it is actually a measure of weight.
1 Carat diamond is subdivided into 100 ‘points. So, half a Carat stone would be described as ‘fifty pointer.
Larger diamonds are found less frequently in nature, they are placed at rarer levels of the Diamond Quality Pyramid. Hence, a 1Carat diamond will cost more than twice a 1/2 Carat diamond.
CHOOSE THE SHAPE OF THE DIAMOND
Cut can also refer to the diamond shape.
- RBC- Round Brilliant Cut
Round Brilliant Cut- is the most popular diamond shape. Almost 75% of all sold diamonds are Round. It’s a classic and timeless choice that never goes out of style. All the rest of the cuts are called fancy diamond shapes.
Round diamonds cost more on a per carat basis than fancy shapes for two reasons: the demand for round diamonds is very high, and the yield is relatively low. Because more of the rough stone is lost in the cutting of a round diamond, the cost of each carat retained is higher. A typical round diamond (for example, a 1.00 carat, F-colour, VS2-clarity, excellent cut) may cost 25-35% more than a similar fancy shape diamond.
Our amazing world if full of breathtaking colours. And if you have decided to go for one of beautiful precious or semi- precious gem stones in your engagement ring you have to remember a few important things.
There are only four precious stones, diamonds, rubies, emeralds and sapphires, all the rest on the list are semi-precious stones. The ‘big four’ will be more expensive to purchase than the rest of the gems on our list.
Some of these magnificent gems could be softer than others. And if your future wife will wear engagement ring all the time, day to day (in the shower, doing housework, at the gym etc), it’s always a good idea to look for stones that are at least an 7 on the Mohs scale for hardness and durability. “Hardness” is the resistance of a material to being scratched.
What is Mohs scale?
Friedrich Mohs, a German mineralogist. He developed the scale in 1812. He selected ten minerals of distinctly different hardness that ranged from a very soft mineral Talk to a very hard mineral Diamond. Diamonds are 10 on the Mohs scale.
SAPPHIRES & RUBIES ENGAGEMENT RINGS
Corundum is a 9 on the Mohs scale. Corundum is best known for its gem varieties, Ruby and Sapphire. Corundum is a very hard, tough, and stable mineral.
Rubies & Sapphires, known to be the symbol of love and romance for good reason. They are the most historically significant of the coloured stones, considering its popularity amongst European royalty. They thought to bring health, love, peace and wisdom to their wearer, and they come in many different shades of red, blue, orange, green etc colours and are cut all different ways, each one more unique than the other.
EMERALD ENGAGEMENT RINGS
Emerald is 7.5 to 8 on the Mohs scale and has fair to good toughness, making it a stone that requires a little bit more care in wearing than ruby or sapphire. Even so, emeralds are stunning stones for and with proper care will last for generations.
An emerald’s deep green hue makes it eye-catching, and just like glimmering diamonds, options are limitless when it comes to settings, cuts, and style. From oval to pear to cushion in platinum, white, yellow or rose gold, emeralds really pop. Vintage brides will be all over Edwardian and Art Deco-inspired variations set in yellow gold, while modern brides will enjoy platinum set stones, surrounded by a diamond or pavè band. If you’re weary about committing to an emerald centre stone, we’re all for an emerald accent for just a touch of colour—complimentary side stones, a halo, or as part of a cluster. If you’re the sentimental type, emeralds are a striking way to commemorate a May birthstone.
CHOOSE A METAL
After the stone has been sorted what do you think will be your next question? That’s right! How to decide on the metal for an engagement ring?
The easiest way of making this decision – choose the same metal she is currently wear! If her jewellery box is filled with classic gold, your safest option is to choose yellow gold. Or does she always wears her earrings, rings and pendants in a shade of silver? Then white gold, platinum, palladium are your best bets.
CHOOSE A SETTING
The setting of a ring is the piece of metal attached to the band that holds the gemstone firmly in place. There are two main styles of engagement ring setting prolonged and invisible.
Prolonged settings usually have four or more claws (prongs) that hold up the precious stone allowing light to enter from different angles. In invisible settings the gemstone sits directly into the metal surface.
Prolonged settings are generally considered to be the more secure of the two but as the stone will be positioned higher on the ring it may also be prone to catching on clothes etc.
Invisible settings work better for the ring wearer lives a very active lifestyle. With wear and tear, there is the risk that gemstones may loosen in the setting so always best to ensure the ring is checked regularly and maintained over time.
- Claw (prong)
To ‘Halo’ or not to ‘Halo’? That is the question.
If you know that your wife to be likes sparkles more than anything you can add an extra bling with a ‘Halo’- pave diamonds set around the centre stone. In the quest for bling, the classic single halo has birthed double and even triple halos. A triple is three rows of pavé stones circling your center stone. Each “circle” of pave makes the ring look bigger … and bigger … and bigger, so the triple wrap may make sense if you have a very small center stone.
Another common question while choosing the ring is how much should I spend on the engagement ring?
There was a believe that traditionally a man should spend three month’s salary on an engagement ring. However, people now are more likely to base their budget on what they can afford without getting into any significant debt.
It is probable a cliché to say but every couple is different and there is no right or wrong way.
Most importantly of all, her engagement ring will be a symbol representing your love and commitment to one another, throughout your lives as a married couple.