engagement ring guide
Whether you've already asked or are looking forward to popping the question in the near future, finding the perfect engagement ring is a big deal! Like most big steps in life, communication is the first step, and picking out an engagement ring is no exception. Even if you or your partner are planning a surprise proposal, it's a good idea to discuss a few key factors as a couple.
You will wear your engagement ring for years to come, through all seasons and all life events, so now is the time to explore, discuss, and try on different shapes, styles, and sizes to find a ring that feels just right for you.
While you can visit our showroom today and purchase an engagement ring, there is a lot of value in a little preparation. Start with the questions below and visit our engagement ring experts when you are ready to find your dream engagement ring.
Which engagement ring styles catch your eye?
It's a good idea to get a basic understanding of different engagement ring styles to start off with. Consider a simple solitaire, a bold halo, or a pretty vintage design to get started. You can explore different engagement ring styles here.
What kind of diamond or gemstone do you fancy?
Many couples are opting for engagement rings featuring a center or accent colored gemstones. Consider if you want only white diamonds, or if you'd like to include some color as a nod to your favorite color, birthstone, or the month you plan to marry. Consider sapphires, rubies, emeralds, or fancy-colored diamonds.
What shape do you love?
There are a number of different diamond shapes or ‘cuts’ available, and having an idea of which you prefer (round, pear, heart, and more!) will make it much easier to find the perfect gem for your engagement ring. The diamond shape might be the most visually significant choice you make, so be sure to consider shapes that reflect your personal style.
Explore different diamond shapes and sizes here.
What does your budget look like?
It might not be the first thing you want to talk about when considering a proposal, but getting an idea of budget is healthy and helps set expectations for both partners. There are a lot of engagement rings out there, and getting an idea of budget early helps narrow the choices and keep you on track.
Do you know your ring size?
There are two ways you can find your or your gift reciprient's ring size. Simply use the ring size guide here using a few household items, or if you have time to spare, you can order our exclusive plastic ring sizer here. Be sure to measure both at the beginning of the day and at the end, as your fingers are prone to change size slightly throughout the day.
Next up: Try it on for size.
While it's easy to fall in love with engagement rings on Pinterest or Instagram, it's also a good idea to try on different styles in person. You’ll want to know how the ring really feels and fits on your hand until you actually see it up close.
One more thing: Don’t forget the important stuff.
At Gold and Diamond Source, we'll make sure you are set during and after purchasing your engagement ring. Here are a few things to consider:
Visit Gold & Diamond Source at our Clearwater showroom to see our full selections and talk to our engagement ring experts, or click HERE to explore different styles online before you come in.
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More of today's brides are choosing unique, fancy shape diamond engagement rings. While many brides still love a dazzling round diamond, engagement ring styles are as varied as the women who wear them. At Gold and Diamond Source, we are seeing brides opt for princess cut, pear, heart, and emerald shaped diamonds more than ever.
Spotlight on the Emerald Cut Engagement Ring
Many brides choose emerald cut diamonds for their elegance and vintage-looking beauty. Emerald cut engagement rings are rare and distinctive— which makes sense that powerhouses Beyonce and Amal Clooney wear this shape diamond in their engagement rings.
The emerald cut dates back to the 1500s when stone cutters began cutting emeralds in a rectangle shape with stepped facets to provide more stability to the stone. The cut was originally performed on emeralds, which are softer and more prone to damage than diamonds. Like most other diamond shapes, an emerald cut diamond has 57 or 58 facets.
Elongated cuts like emerald cut diamonds tend to look larger and elongate the fingers due to their large top surface, which is far bigger than a round cut diamond of the same carat weight.
Emeralds tend to be set in a simple solitaire setting to showcase the cut of the diamond. Many couples opt for a halo around their emerald cut diamond to accentuate the stone's beauty and vintage flair.
Only roughly 3% of the cut diamonds are emerald cut, which makes this shape more rare than other options. With their elongated table, budget-minded shoppers might be pleased to learn that the emerald cut diamonds' elongated shape and larger table makes this shape appear larger than diamonds of the same carat size.
We invite you to visit Gold and Diamond Source at our Clearwater showroom to view all diamond jewelry, or shop a selection online HERE.
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He popped the question, you said yes, and now you can't stop staring at your gorgeous ring! Once you've told your family and closest friends, the next step is taking the perfect ring selfie. This is the shot your friends will love to revisit over and over again as they share this exciting time with you. For many, the ring selfie has replaced the traditional method of calling to tell the good news.
If you plan on celebrating your engagement with a ring selfie, we've gathered the very best tips to do it right and enhance the natural beauty of your diamond to achieve a stunning, true-to-life engagement ring selfie.
Guide to The Perfect Ring Selfie
Get it just right
It all starts with the hand! A little hand lotion and a manicure can go a long way in making your hands look their best for their close-up. If you're planning on getting engaged soon, consider staying away from trendy nail art and choosing a more timeless look that wouldn't distract from an engagement ring.
The perfect angle
Regardless of the actual size of your center diamond, certain angles and setups can change the appearance of its size. In most cases, we recommend taking a top-down shot of your ring. This shot is called a “table view”, and it will give the most accurate impression of the diamond’s size.
In most cases, side-view photos of an engagement ring can be totally misleading. For instance, a large diamond ring that sits low on the finger will look tiny in a side-view image, where capturing it from a table view will help show its true size.
Bonus tip: remove all other jewelry and accessories from your hand and wrist before snapping a selfie to truly let your engagement ring shine. The shapes and sizes of your other jewelry, especially larger watches, can skew how big the center stone appears.
What details to share
Exactly how much ring details to share has been long debated even before ring selfies were a thing. Generally, we err on the side of sharing less about your ring and simply letting friends and family marvel at the good news and the ring's beauty. Sharing details of price and carat weight can lead to discussions and feelings of jealousy and comparison that take away from your special day.
Bonus tip: We do recommend sharing anything that tells of the ring's special meaning to you. If there was inspiration behind a part of the ring, if you used a family diamond, or if you chose a certain engraving, these details are unique and sweet to share with others.
Details to remember
Try to find natural light for the best ring selfie results. When natural light is not possible, avoid using your camera's flash as it can reflect the stone's brilliance in an unflattering way.
Avoid using zoom for the perfect shot. Zoomed in photos often come out blurry. Avoid using the zoom feature to guarantee a crisp, high quality photo.
Don't take a close-up table shot if you have an Asscher or emerald cut diamond. With such large, open tables, inclusions appear more obvious in these cuts. Avoid highlighting minor inclusions with a farther away photo or slightly turned angle.
We invite you to visit Gold and Diamond Source at our Clearwater showroom to view our complete collection, or shop a selection of engagement rings online HERE.
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Vintage-inspired engagement rings— detail-oriented designs with a timeless allure— continue to grow in popularity with today's bride-to-be's. If you appreciate classic fashion, vintage finds, and old photos, you might fall for this engagement ring style. Unlike a simple solitaire on a polished band, vintage-inspired engagement rings feature rich details from every angle. You can expect to see miligrain details, beaded edges, touches of yellow gold, and colored stones with this unique ring style.
Some of our favorite Vintage-Inspired Engagement Rings:
Do you think a vintage-style engagement ring might be right for you? We invite you to visit Gold and Diamond Source at our Clearwater showroom to view our complete collection, or shop a selection of vintage engagement rings here.
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Finding your perfect engagement ring doesn't have to be overwhelming. While we recognize the vocabulary around cut, color, style, and more can sometimes feel more like a lesson in terminology than picking out a meaningful piece of jewelry, we are here to make the engagement ring shopping process easier— and therefore more enjoyable— for you.
If you've ever felt lost when talking with a jeweler or doing engagement ring research, this vocabulary guide is for you. Save this handy guide so you'll never doubt again when finding the perfect ring for your partner.
Engagement Ring Vocabulary Guide
4Cs: Acronym standing for cut, color, clarity and carat— these are the top four characteristics to look for when purchasing a diamond.
Accent diamonds: Diamonds that surround or enhance the main diamond; they are typically smaller in size than the main diamond.
Crown: Top half of a diamond.
Halo: Ring of diamonds or stones surrounding a center diamond or stone.
Pavilion: Lower half of a diamond.
Scintillations: Sparkles in a diamond that are seen as the diamond moves under a light.
Table: Flat surface that is the uppermost part of a diamond; it is calculated by dividing the width of the table by the width of the diamond.
The Diamond Cut
Asscher cut: Square shaped diamond with a high crown, step facets, and a small table.
Cushion cut: Square cut diamond with rounded edges and the third most popular diamond cut.
Emerald cut: Rectangular shaped with small, rounded edges and a large, open table.
European cut: Antique diamond cut created before the precision created by modern technology was available.
Heart cut: Diamond in the shape of a heart typically found in solitaire settings.
Marquise cut: Long and narrow diamond-shaped similarly to a football. It’s best set with prongs on each end to protect the points from chipping.
Oval cut: A unique take on a round diamond. Oval-shaped stones come in a variety of widths ranging from slim to wide.
Pear cut: Combination of a round and a marquise shape diamond available in a variety of narrow to wide sizes.
Princess cut: The second most popular diamond cut, below round and above cushion. The cut has a square or rectangular shape when viewed from above, and from the side is similar to that of an inverted pyramid with four beveled sides.
Radiant cut: Square or rectangular diamond with minimal curved edges similar to an emerald shape.
Round cut: Circular-shaped diamond. It’s the most common shape for engagement rings.
Trillion cut: Triangular shaped diamond, often used as side stones to frame a square diamond.
The Ring Style
Art deco: Rings created during or inspired by the art deco era from 1920 to 1935, known for bold line and geometric shapes.
Baguette: Meaning “long rod” in French, the baguette cut features long, clean lines, and is typically used in side stones.
Band: Ring that tends to accompany an engagement ring. Can be made of a precious metal, alloys, and/or include stones.
Bezel: Metal that completely surrounds the diamond or featured gemstone. A half bezel is the term used when half of the stone is framed by metal. Bezel ring settings are stronger and more protective than prong settings.
Colored diamond: Natural and dyed color diamonds. Popular diamond color options include yellow, pink, blue, chocolate and black.
Colored gemstone: Engagement rings featuring a colored gemstone stone ranging in a variety of colors. Popular gemstone options are sapphire and ruby.
Halo: Ring featuring a center stone that’s surrounded by a circle of stones. Engagement rings can have more than one halo, referred to as a double halo if two circles of gemstones encircle one center stone.
Hand-crafted: Ring that’s been made by hand instead of the casing process of filling a mold. It’s shaped by hand by the jeweler.
Pavé: Setting of stones where they’re placed close together so as to avoid seeing metal in between the stones.
Side Stones: Ring featuring a main stone and surrounded by smaller stones. Can also be referred to as a three-stone ring or a halo.
Solitaire: An engagement ring with a single, solitary center stone.
Tension set: Gemstone is held in place by metal on either side, thus creating tension.
Three-Stone: Ring featuring three stones, typically three diamonds or a diamond centered between two other stones. Known to celebrate a couple's past, present, and future together.
Unique shank: Engagement ring with an individualized lower part that goes around the finger, also known as a shank.
Vintage or Vintage-Inspired: These are classic-style engagement rings typically created, or modeled after, jewelry from the early 1900s or earlier. An antique engagement ring is technically defined as being over fifty years old.
14k gold: Made of 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metals or alloys.
18k gold: Made of 18 parts gold and 6 parts other metals.
24k gold: Pure gold. The softest gold, as gold gets softer the purer it is.
Alloy: A mixture of two or more metals mixed together.
Gold plated: Thin, almost microscopic layer of pure gold used to coat another type of metal.
Platinum: Precious metal with a silvery white color and shine.
Rose gold: An alloy of gold tinted with copper to create a rosy tone. The deeper the pink color, the more copper there is in the alloy.
White gold: Yellow gold mixed with a white alloy.
Yellow gold: The color of pure gold, yellow gold gets darker or changes color the more alloys are mixed with it.
Are you ready to find the perfect engagement ring? We invite you to visit Gold and Diamond Source at our Clearwater showroom to view our complete collection, or shop a selection of engagement rings online HERE.
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