Today, engagement rings are used by almost every religion, culture, and individual. Women from every country wear them, but don't necessarily know why they do, or what characteristics are so special about them. Engagement rings are truly a world of their own, and needless to say there are many important questions people have asked. There are those who inquire regarding the stones used, and then there are those fixated on the settings. From the diamond's size to its shape, color and cost, here are several of the most frequently asked questions about engagement rings.
Canary yellow diamond engagement rings of the Soleil jewelry collection
1. Why do women wear engagement rings and when did this tradition start?
Engagement rings actually date back to ancient Egyptian, Greek, and Roman times, but the modern engagement ring consisting of a diamond or other gemstone became a trademark for engagements in the western world in the mid 20th century. Read more about the history of engagement rings.
2. Does an engagement ring have to include a diamond?
Back when engagement rings were given and worn for the sole purpose of indicating that one is betrothed; the rings were simple and did not consist of diamonds. Since the late 1940s, after the Great Depression and the decline of the diamond's value, the DeBeers company brought the diamond “back” with their slogan “diamonds are forever.” That idea is essentially what transformed the possibility of an engagement ring including a diamond to it being an absolute necessity. Today engagement rings are basically synonymous with diamond rings, but a counter trend has begun to shake this binding custom that comes with economic and social burdens and restrictions. An attempt to introduce other gemstones, both precious and semi precious, to the engagement ring has proven to be successful. From sapphire and emerald engagement rings worn by celebrities to rings with lesser-known stones such as moonstone and citrine, the diamond engagement ring is stepping out of the confines of its traditional box.
An engagement ring can be just as beautiful with a gemstone, like these Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald rings
3. How much should an engagement ring cost?
Engagement rings vary greatly in terms of price. The main factor when it comes to the price is the stone. Diamonds come at a cost, so depending on the type and size of diamond, a ring can cost anywhere from several hundred dollars to several thousand or even tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars. The sky is the limit for engagement rings, as the center stone is just one of a ring's potential features. Just don't be fooled by the 6 myths about engagement rings that you probably believed.
Other features include side stones, which can be larger than an average center stone, intricate diamond studded bands, and bands from precious metals. There are all kinds of speculations regarding what a ring should cost from a few months' salaries to whatever is in the bank. The smartest answer is a delicate balance between the bride-to-be's dream ring and a realistic sum that won't keep the couple in overdraft for the next few years and be a cause for strife and friction.
4. When is an engagement ring given?
Traditionally, the engagement ring is given when the man proposes. Of course this scenario cannot and need not occur in every situation. Some couples prefer to shop for the ring together, while others choose to purchase the ring when the budget allows it. The engagement ring ceremony, like the ring itself, is extremely individual and personal and it should be up to the couple or ring giver to decide when the right time should be.
5. What is a traditional engagement ring setting?
Traditional is a very strong word since every religion, culture, and even family has its own customs. Nevertheless, there is almost a global idea of what a traditional engagement setting should look like. This idea of course changes with the times. For instance, decades ago the typical setting was a white gold setting, which later on changed to a yellow gold setting, and of course went back to white gold, with an addition of platinum, rose gold, and pretty much whatever one's taste happens to be. For example, today, yellow diamond engagement rings have taken on a major role in the world of absolute must haves. The round shaped stone has been a very common shape for the engagement ring, as has been the pear shape, and princess shape. Cushion and Radiant shapes are beginning to pick up more and more. Less traditional rings are the vintage and retro style rings, which have made a comeback and may very well be the next “traditional” ring one day.
Our advice is to follow your heart in order to pick the diamond and setting of the ring that suits you best!
Choosing an engagement ring is an important decision, so it is understandable that it may be accompanied by a myriad of questions. The most important thing to remember is the nature of the ring and the reason behind it. Focus on whom the ring is for and where it is coming from. A ring that is in style may not be for you, and a pricey ring may be what you think you want but it might just cost you your relationship. Be honest and reasonable when selecting a ring and don't forget to have fun with it!