The Bride Guide: The Purchase
Welcome to week 1 of The Bride Guide! This 12-week blog series will cover every aspect of planning a wedding from start to finish. Today we focus on the big purchase of an engagement ring with Flower Gatone of Fountain City Jewelers. The process of finding and buying the perfect ring can be overwhelming, especially if someone is trying to pull off a surprise proposal. There is so much more than the four C’s involved in buying a ring and our tips will help you spend wisely and choose well . So hand today’s Bride Guide over to your sweetheart to ease the burden and help with the commitment…to the perfect ring.
From Flower Gattone:
“When looking for advice on buying an engagement ring, there seems to be no shortage online. But some topics that I’ve seen men struggle with every day, are not covered by the four C’s.
#1. Have options.
Find some jewelers.That’s right, more than one. Find a couple of stores with a good reputation (or good reviews) and plan to see all of them before making a decision of who to work with. Then, go with the one that makes you feel the most comfortable. Find someone that you can work with and trust. You might have a lot of interaction over the next couple of weeks.
#2. Buy for her, not you.
Before heading to the first store, establish what she wants. You will need to figure out her favorite metal color. Yellow gold is making a big comeback, but white is still the number one seller. Rose or pink gold’s beauty still captivates some, but most prefer it as an accent metal. The metal color is your springboard. Check out her everyday jewelry and her favorite pieces (these are the ones she wears over and over). You can also sneak a peek in her jewelry box, but don’t get caught. That would be a tricky situation to talk your way out of, and she would probably know something is up.
Once you establish the metal color, move on to style. Does she wear simple and classic style or does she prefer something larger and bolder? Is she practical or adventurous? A woman with a flair for style will not be wowed with a basic solitaire. Go for something with more pizazz. Remember to share who she is with your jeweler. They might have some excellent suggestions.
Talk to your guy friends who have recently been engaged or married. They are a great resource and may even go with you on a shopping trip as back up.
Remember, you might not like what she likes. This is not a situation where just your effort gets you an A+. Now is the time to overlook what you prefer so you can be her hero. Your preference might differ on diamond shape, metal color or ring style. This may be your $$$ but it’s her ring and you want her to want to wear it for the rest of her life and think, “He did this for ME”. Always keep in mind what SHE would want.
Colored stones are a nice option to add a special touch, but be careful. Diamonds are a very durable stone, and safe to wear every day, but many colored stones are not. Sapphires (all colors) and rubies will probably withstand the test of time without getting scratched and chipped, while gemstones such at emeralds and tanzanite are significantly more delicate. Pearls are not advised as they are too soft.
#3. Bring photos
A picture really is worth a thousand words, so why not bring some? Don’t hesitate to find a few images of jewelry she likes (they don’t all have to be rings) and bring them along. Most jewelers can either obtain or make what you want, so why not show them instead of tell them? Your girlfriend’s girlfriend or sister will probably love nothing more than to come with you or help you select designs. But remember, loose lips will sink proposal surprises!
#4. Cover your assets
And finally, get it insured. Before you put it on her finger or show it off, make sure you are protected. A rider on your home owner’s or renter’s policy should suffice. You don’t want anything tragic happening (loss, theft, garbage disposal) and have to start all over again before she even sees it!
Now that you are armed with some practical advice, you can go boldly. After all, you found the love of your life, selecting a ring should be easy compared to that.”
Flower is a Gemologist Graduate who attended the GIA campus in Carlsbad CA in 2003. She has had 15 years experience in the jewelry industry and has worked in a variety of wholesale and retail environments. She loves the color purple and all things sparkly.
Tomorrow, we find out great tips from Flower of Fountain City Jewelers on how to care for your engagement ring, and let me be honest- I just learned I have been going about it all wrong! My poor ring! Stay tuned for The Bride Guide: The Rock.