The key to determining how much you should and can spend on your engagement ring? Defining your limit and looking at a heck of a lot of rings. Here, Jared Klusner, our founder and antique jewelry buyer, helps you do just that.
Set Your Limit
What is the maximum your willing to spend? Some can go as far as they like and others may have a very specific number in mind. In either case it helps to know your limit but then start at the bottom...
Go Low to High
Begin your search at a lower price point. You may find your perfect ring several thousand dollars cheaper then you planned. More expensive does not always mean better, especially when it comes to vintage rings. The intricacy of the band and era-specific design elements may attract your eye, rather than just a large center stone — which often increases the price exponentially.
Look at a Heck of a Lot of Rings
I suggest you look at many rings to hone your eye. At the start of your search, you may feel like you're in love with every ring, but once you've looked at many you'll start to have more discerning taste. You may begin to realize that a style or piece you once thought was perfect isn't actually so unique, special, or well made. My experience comes from having seen literally thousands of rings. I can now easily tell if a piece is unique, unusual, or desirable. You too can hone this skill with practice and a bit of research.
Know When to Splurge
Many people want their ring to be an investment. For the average buyer, I try not to encourage buying the engagement ring as an investment piece. Sure, the ring will have inherent value, however your engagement ring is a piece you will wear for a lifetime, and hopefully pass down as an heirloom, so focusing solely on its investment potential can be a mistake. Diamonds and precious metals are commodities, however your engagement ring is so much more than the sum of its parts. Its symbolic and sentimental, components that are priceless!
Do You Love the Ring
Be sure to look at the diamond in the natural light. Pay attention to how it sparkles and its internal fire. Diamonds are much more than just their GIA or EGL color and clarity ratings. Don’t get too hung up on how the diamonds reads on paper, unless you plan on wearing the certificate around as well! Antique stones are all unique, and the way they glisten and sparkle cannot be captured on a certificate. Pay attention to how the stone interplays with the setting and the way it glistens in the light. Your ring is meant to be worn and enjoyed, and nobody should love to look at it more than you. Its ok to be pragmatic, this is a big purchase after all, but try and approach the process with a little more heart and a little less head and you should find your perfect ring in no time!