Do I need an engagement ring to propose?
I get asked this question all the time by men who visit my store. It is a real dilemma, particularly if you want an element of surprise and of course romance.
After many years of experience with men scheming & planning with them the ‘perfect proposal’ I would recommend proposing with a custom made ring or a classic design diamond engagement ring, especially if you know your partners taste and feel pretty confident you know what she will love wearing for the rest of her life.
Often I can help the process with simple questions; Does she like classic traditional designs or modern contemporary? Does she wear yellow gold, rose of white gold? Has she hinted before about styles of rings she likes?
Proposing with a temporary ring
If there are vague answers and definite uncertainty I would recommend using one of my sample rings to propose, these look like real engagement rings but are made of silver and cubic zirconias. They are also made based on my engagement designs which I can easily replicate and customize. How this process works is that I take a deposit on the sample ring that I keep if the ring is not returned (as these are still quite expensive as beautifully crafted) or if the design is a success or a ring design change is made I transfer the deposit towards the real ring.
We can then easily make a replica of the same ring chosen using real metals & diamonds, however the real benefit of using a sample ring is that at this stage she can easily change the design and there are no dramas.
Choosing the perfect ring design
I am amazed by how often my clients have chosen the perfect designs, however there is an element of peace of mind when using the sample ring, they can pop in, we measure the finger size and make the perfect ring.
There have been times when we have tweaked the design, changed the metal colour, and we have been easily able to make the changes. I have usually ascertained by my client the budget upper limits and often the romance can still be maintained by not having to go into the money details as this can ruin the romance.
Selecting the right stone for the design
I know men have been encouraged by other jewellers to propose using a diamond. I have found in my experience that if we select the diamond first this can limit the choice of ring design, especially if she loves the fancy cut diamonds (square princess cut diamonds, rectangular emerald or radiant cut diamonds, or oval, pear, marquise cuts) which are more popular lately and are a personal choice.
So in summary I would recommend proposing with a real ring, this is a special moment for a woman to be surprised with a ring box and to open the box to a magical ring she can pop on her finger. I have gorgeous ring boxes I import from Europe for this special moment. Ideally the real ring is the ultimate proposal, especially if we have an idea of the design and style she loves. If not with a sample ring that can be made in 1-2 weeks and can be easily adjusted to suit personal tastes.
Romance is eternal and it is wonderful to have beautiful memories of a special moment in time.