How To Find The Ring She Really Wants
3,000 Styles to Choose From
How in the world are you supposed to trim 3,000 ring styles down to one? It sounds daunting but we lead guys like you through it every day. Let’s start with a brief overview of the most important criteria and then one day when you feel ready you can come in and talk with one of our engagement ring consultants. They’re trained to ask the right questions, listen closely and follow your lead.
Yes, you have some choices to make, but each time you make one you hone in a little closer on her ideal ring. At the end of the day, you want to come out of this with an engagement ring that fits perfectly with who she is and what she likes.
Solitaire or multi-stone?
Is she a big jewelry person or do you think she wants something fairly simple? Solitaire rings display one diamond and are the standard for women with simple yet elegant tastes. Multi-stone rings are considered a bit fancier and are usually the right choice for women that like to live a bit more extravagantly.
Traditional or fancy?
Hear the word “diamond” and you probably envision a classic Round stone. But you can go with a less traditional shape, like a square or rectangular Princess-cut, or a new and trendy Cushion-cut. Collectively, all non-traditional shapes (Princess, Cushion, Pear, Oval, Marquis, Heart, etc.) are referred to as “fancy cuts.”
Shape has nothing to do with quality. As long as the stone is cut well it will sparkle regardless. The shape of a diamond is usually dictated by the shape of the rough crystal from which it was cut. All are cut for maximum fire and brilliance, but the shapes of the facets vary with the cut and thus they filter light differently.
Classic or contemporary?
Is she more of a traditionalist or a fashionista? Does she jump on board with trends or is she more a fan of the ‘tried and true’? It is hard to go wrong with an accepted and established ring design, but at the same time, it can be fun to choose something new and exciting as well.
White gold, yellow gold or platinum?
Her existing jewelry collection should give you a good idea of her choice of precious metals. Here is a little bit of background on the Big Three, along with some pros and cons for each:
Yellow Gold – Gold jewelry has been in style since the Egyptians started using it to adorn themselves as far back as 3000 BC. King Tut’s tomb was discovered to be filled with impressive gold designs. It is classic, it is wearer-friendly and it is beautiful. In addition, its durability makes it a good choice for jewelry that will be worn every day.
White Gold – When the government stopped the manufacturing of platinum jewelry at the onset of WWII, people were in search of a replacement for platinum’s white luster. Jewelers started experimenting with different recipes in an attempt to turn yellow gold white. It was soon discovered that the “white gold” effect could be created by adding palladium, nickel or zinc to yellow gold. Is she prefers the look of silver over gold, and platinum seems a little over budget, white gold is an excellent choice.
Pros: popular, readily available, versatile, retains value, resistant to corrosion
Cons: rising price of gold, white gold created with nickel can cause allergic reaction
Gold rings use a “karat” system to describe their percentage of pure gold.
- 24K gold is pure gold (100%)
- 18K gold is 18 parts gold and 6 parts other metals (75% gold)
- 14K gold is 14 parts gold and 10 parts other metals (58% gold)
- 12K gold is 12 parts gold and 12 parts other metals (50% gold)
- 10K gold is 10 parts gold and 14 parts other metals (42% gold)
Platinum – Compared to gold, platinum is extremely rare. In fact, all the platinum that has ever been mined wouldn’t even take up one average-sized living room. Louis XVI once proclaimed platinum to be the only metal worthy of royalty. Its popularity peaked in the early 1900s as the standard for fine jewelry. Then at the start of WWII, the government declared platinum a “strategic metal” and halted its use for jewelry.
Platinum has enjoyed a resurgence in recent years thanks to the likes of well-known designers like Scott Kay, Michael B and Renaissance. Platinum engagement rings are extremely fashionable for those with a discerning eye for fine jewelry.
Pros: Beautiful, strong, pure, rare, versatile,
Cons: heavy, more expensive
Up high or down low? A diamond perched way up high in its setting is going to get more attention. But if she is an active person, you might want to consider a lower setting to protect the stone.
Take a look at our online engagement ring selection. You’ll find even more in our stores.
Her Ring Size
Do you know it? If not, don’t sweat it. If you want to surprise her you can print out this ring-sizer to measure one of her other rings when she’s not around.
What Looks Best on Her Finger?
- Wide bands make fingers appear shorter.
- Bold ring styles look better on women with long fingers.
- Extremely delicate settings get lost on large hands.
- Taller women can get away with wider and bolder designs.
On the one hand, you want to surprise her. On the other hand, you want it to be a ring she absolutely adores. So the question is, how involved is she going to be in the process? There is no “how it’s supposed to be” these days. We see guys in here shopping alone, we have couples come in to narrow choices down, and we also see couples actually purchasing the ring together. None of these scenarios violates the rules of engagement ring shopping etiquette.
But if you want to keep things a bit more traditional, you have to find ways to get hints that will allow you to exceed her romantic expectations without breaking down and asking her what she wants. A few ideas to get your head spinning:
- Look for opportunities in everyday life to get her opinion on different rings and styles.
- Take note of the jewelry she wears most often to get a better sense of her taste and personal preferences.
- How does she dress? Generally speaking, her sense of style should carry over.
- Enlist the help of a friend who is willing to act as a “go-between.”
- Bring her to a nearby Spence Diamonds and see what she responds to.
- Set up an appointment and get more hint-dropping ideas in person.
We know the whole thing feels overwhelming but you can handle it. Spence has your back. We’re here for you whenever you’re ready to get started on a ring that will far exceed her expectations.