Getting engaged and planning a wedding is an exciting yet hectic time, and sometimes certain steps in the process can seem more daunting than others. Picking out the perfect engagement ring or wedding band is easier said than done, with numerous styles and factors playing a role in the decision making process. Below we have a few tips to get you started, and maybe help make the search a little easier.
Look for Inspiration
Looking for inspiration ahead of time can take some stress out of the search, and give you an idea of what you and your partner like. Being something that you will wear everyday for years to come, you want to make sure it’s something that matches your style and personality. Use sites like Pinterest to create a vision board and save your favorite picks. Or, check out sites like Style Me Pretty for engagement ring insights and the hottest trends. Once you have a good selection, sit down with your partner and go through your top picks! If you want your ring to be a surprise, give your partner a few options, and let them decide on the one they think would be the best fit for you. This gives it a personal touch from both of you, and gives you both a say in the ring choice. Consider wedding band ideas in your search as well, to help find styles that compliment your engagement ring ahead of time. Then search for options for both you and your partner post proposal.
Once you have done your research, begin the browsing process. Shopping together for your wedding rings can be an intimate moment for you and your new fiance during the chaotic wedding planning process. It gives you an opportunity to step away and spend time one on one, picking out the right ring that symbolises your love and commitment for each other. Spend time browsing and getting to know each others personal tastes a little better, and relish in a personal wedding preparation moment for just the two of you.
Give Yourself Time & A Budget
Give yourself at least three months prior to the big day to shop and decide on your wedding bands. Having time to browse and find the perfect fit may take more time than you think, so plan accordingly, and schedule out at least three days for each step of the process. Spend the first day shopping and figuring out the style of your rings. A new trend for couples is for their wedding bands to be unique to them and not similar in style. This idea creates a more customised pairing, and maybe even think about adding a personalised engraving. This may add time to the process, as well as getting sizing right, so spend the second day going over these options with your partner and jeweller. The third and final day is pick up day! Make sure the rings look and feel right, and plan accordingly for any changes that need to be made.
If time seems to have slipped away and your wedding date is fast approaching, shopping dates may not be possible. Luckily, there are convenient online options like Blue Nile, that offer a wide range of wedding band options that you can order right from their online shop, and have shipped to your door. So, no need to stress, especially if you are in a time crunch!
Setting a budget can also relieve financial stress, so set aside about 3-4% of your wedding budget for the rings. Communicate openly with your partner about the desired amount you both feel comfortable spending towards both the engagement and wedding rings. Being on the same page financially can help to relieve any frustration when it comes time to shop, and can help size down your options. Once you have a desired price in mind, be sure to also review personalisation costs (i.e. engravings) with your jeweller prior to purchase to make sure it fits within your budget.
Consider Your Lifestyle
Making a list of styles, metals, and colours for your wedding bands can help when considering how your ring will affect your day to day lifestyle. Many who work in hands-on professions prefer a flexible material like silicone, or a stronger metal like tungsten for its durability when exposed to harsh conditions. A comfort fit design also works well, with soft rounded edges preventing the ring from getting caught. Darker colours are also popular, to show less dirt, grime, and minor cosmetic damage that can accumulate from your day to day. If you work in a profession that requires gloves or protective wear for your hands, look for rings that sit flush to your finger, and consider the carat size and shape when looking for an engagement ring. Channel-set rings are an option that house the diamonds or gemstones within the band instead of an exterior setting. This keeps both your ring and fingers safe while working.
Consider both of your personal lifestyles as well. Natural, eco-friendly materials like wood and precious metals that are left unrefined and unpolished, are becoming a trend for those who prefer a more natural look to their ring. Or, if a vintage style is more your speed, look for simplistic wedding bands with a gemstone engagement ring to match. Check out these helpful insights about how to shop for the perfect ring while remaining eco-friendly through re-purposing or looking for rings created with less harmful alternative materials.