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Diamonds; the hardest natural mineral known to man, and a timeless symbol of continuity and longevity. Their symbolism, coupled with the rarity, purity and intrinsic beauty of these gems, have long held them in favour with British monarchs. Following two key Royal events in recent British history: the Royal Wedding and Diamond Jubilee, these wondrous natural stones have enjoyed an unprecedented revival in both wedding and engagement ring styles. But, how do you choose a diamond or ring that will ensure you win the hand and heart of your intended, whilst staying on-budget? Read on for England Diamond's comprehensive guide to buying the perfect diamond ring.
Budget Considerations When Buying A Diamond Engagement Ring
Whether or not you're a fan of Shirley Bassey, she was right about one thing - “diamonds are forever”. So, it's only right that choosing a diamond ring for your intended should entail a little more forethought, time, , and of course, money. Celebrities have it easy; the luxury of unparalleled choice without the worry of budget constraints, and traditions dictating ring value should equate to at least one month's salary. Few buyers can afford to match the Beckhams or Katie Price for budget, and for many, 2-3000 dollars represents the very top end of their investment capital. Tradition dictates the minimum spend in many cultures; in the US, diamond industry guidelines specify a minimum budget of two months salary for buying an engagement ring; in the UK, the guideline is one month's salary, and in Japan, a minimum of three month's wages should be reserved for the ring. At the end of day, everyone is different, and you should set at a budget you feel most comfortable with. .
However, your budget doesn't have to preclude you from some of the more precious diamond and ring styles available. Familiarising yourself with both metal choices and the famous “4 Cs of Diamond Buying” is an invaluable effort that can assist in realising the best size, style, and quality for your perfect engagement ring – within your budget! If you need further assistance in finding the optimal 4C’s combination within your budget, why not take a look at some of our trusted recommendations highlighted in our “England Diamond: Pick of the Week” section. Here, our in-house diamond expert has selected the GIA graded diamonds that we feel are most suited to your purchasing objective - at the best value for money!
We highly recommend perusing a number of different ring styles before establishing a bottom line budget for the “perfect” diamond. You may decide that you prefer an alternative metal, style or even a different setting, which could significantly change your budget, thus setting the boundary for the carat size options and quality of diamonds available to you.
Finally, bear this in mind: whatever the budget you have set, and whatever style you have finally decided upon, feel confident about your choice and do not over-analyse it. If you feel you have over spent, consider the fact your purchase is also a financial investment, and one which might, given time, become a cherished family heirloom. The value of diamonds has seen an unprecedented increase over the last five years. Conversely, if you feel you have under spent, don’t worry. You can always upgrade your diamond later. We at England Diamond offer a lifetime upgrade service on all GIA graded diamonds we sell.
Diamond Ring Styles and Settings
It took almost nine years for Prince William to pluck up the courage and drop down on one knee. Like him, you've perhaps been biding your time before popping the question, without giving any real consideration to the style of engagement ring you'll need to win her heart. Now you're ready to take the plunge, where on earth do you even start?
Firstly, don't fret it. If you've been tasked with the traditional duty of buying the engagement ring to surprise her, there are numerous ways to pick the right engagement ring that don't entail asking her mother for advice. Conversely, if she already knows you're going to propose, you can still retain that element of surprise and not give too much away.
One of the best ways to glean information about your fiancée’s style preferences is to evaluate the kind of jewellery she wears already. Which metal seems to dominate her jewellery collection? Does she prefer vintage styles, or something a little more minimalist and contemporary? If, for example, she prefers simplicity and sparkle with a little sophistication, rings with diamond shoulders are generally a safe bet. We also recommend you peruse our product catalogue, and educate yourself about the various ring styles and setting styles prior to making the important choice.
Not every woman is quite so obvious, particularly those who love mixing and matching vintage jewellery styles from different eras. If you're unsure whether she'd prefer a contemporary style with a classic diamond setting, why not opt for a beautiful classic solitaire ring? Timeless, elegant and almost always en vogue, solitaire rings have been a popular choice for engagement ring styles since the turn of the 20th Century. Many of the world's foremost jewellery retailers continue to offer a wide range of solitaire rings, simply because they are extremely flattering to the cut and shape of the stone. Solitaire rings also allow a significant amount of natural light into the diamond, giving them a radiance and fire unmatched by any other style.
If all else fails, there is another option that is fast becoming de rigeur among engaged couples. Instead of purchasing a ring outright, you simply choose a beautiful loose diamond and present it to her in England Diamond’s beautiful presentation box. Once she has said “yes”, you can both set a date to go shopping for the perfect engagement ring and make it a day you'll cherish forever!
England Diamond offers a comprehensive selection of stunning pre-set rings to order, but, if you're seeking something a little more bespoke and personalized, we also carry a vast range of loose diamonds and ring bases within our “Design Your Own Ring” category.
To educate yourself further about diamonds and rings, visit our comprehensive “Knowledge Centre” section. Not only will you learn how to make a wiser purchase, you’ll also learn how to plan a compelling and memorable marriage proposal!