It seems we all have differing opinions on who picks out the engagement ring!
I believe that we are all so uniquely different and what may have worked for one couple doesn’t apply at all to another! This whole notion of who picks out and buys the engagement ring has been something on my mind lately. So many of my friends and family members have been getting engaged and they all did it differently! One was surprised, another designed it herself, another shared favorite ring photos, and another chose together. What we do during the wedding planning helps us to understand what will work later on too. This isn’t just buying an engagement ring, it’s learning how to communicate for the future when you need a kitchen renovation, buying a new home, or moving to another state!
I found this to be interesting for those of you that are yet to be engaged. Maybe you’ve talked about wanting to get married. Maybe you’re still day dreaming about it? Maybe you haven’t even mentioned ring shopping. If you’re like me, asking one question can lead to pandora’s box of questions and I have trouble asking just ONE!
Nicole from Harry Merrill & Sons shared similar thoughts as well, (with 3 generations of experience, I’d trust their opinion!!!) “In the 21st century, the traditional idea of purchasing an engagement ring as a complete surprise is becoming less common. These days, we’re seeing about a 50/50 split. Even for those who are shopping without the knowledge of his or her future spouse, though, we have some handy tips for how to get an idea of the “dream ring:
- Unsurprisingly, a lot of women (because the majority of engagement rings are worn by women, in both hetero and same sex relationships) will tell their partners what they want without being asked, even if it’s as simple as saying “I always wanted a princess cut solitaire” or “I love this vintage style” while pointing to a picture online or in a store window.
- Ask the person closest to her – mom, sister, best friend. The odds are good that this person will know the details. Also, if you bring up the subject with her family, they might mention that there’s a family heirloom available. One of my friends came in with his mom to buy a setting because he had a diamond from his side of the family.
- If you want to keep it a secret from everyone, we can help by talking it out with the you. What is her style? Does she like to get dressed up with full hair and makeup every day, or is she more of a laid back, yoga pants type of woman? What does she do for work? Is there any jewelry that she wears every day? We can help to target certain designs based on those answers and years of experience.
- Sometimes, it’s okay to snoop. If you know that she has a Pinterest account, check it out (or ask her friend/sister/whomever to do the checking for you).
It’s also okay to ask. If you’ve reached the point of ring shopping, the odds are that you’ve already discussed marriage and your future. Plan to spend an afternoon or Wednesday evening strolling around Jewelers’ Row (fun fact: we’re the country’s oldest diamond district!), looking in the windows, and trying some things on. We can recommend several bars and restaurants for lunch or dinner as a reward. Also, we can make a wish list of the ring or rings that she loves, and then you can sneak back later to purchase or custom design it. Even when couples begin the initial search together, we almost always reach the point where we say to the recipient, “after this, you are out of the loop and it’s a surprise from here on out.” Most importantly, we’re here to help, and we’re happy to answer any questions that you may have about the process!” – Harry Merrill & Sons
Be sure to have a talk and make sure it works for you two, not just what worked for someone else! Everyone has different traditions. Some people hate surprises and others want to be surprised on a boat ride in Venice (Jen Woodruff <3). Remember to go into these conversations knowing we all have opinions and sometimes we have to compromise. But never allow these decisions to get in the way of continuing to date and have fun. After all you have your whole life ahead of you past this one investment in a ring :). Homes, kids, & travels should all be taken into consideration.
Engagement ring photograph by Carly Fuller Photography