Proposal Shaping Up? Consider these Diamond Shapes

By Donna Jolly, RJ

You met the perfect person. You both like the same food, the same music, the same guilty pleasures on Bravo. You like each other’s family and friends. Everything works. It’s just…right.

And so, you’ve come to realize: it’s time to pop THE question.

Before you start Googling the “Perfect Proposal” or looking at YouTube videos of modern day Romeos hijacking Jumbotrons at basketball games, or even tying rings to helium balloons (which fly away…with the ring), get down to the heart of the matter: the ring.

Diamond cutters are not just master craftsmen, they are magicians with a cutting wheel and they create amazingly beautiful shapes. AGS Laboratories pioneered the light performance cut grade for fancy shapes, which means between the diamond cutters and AGS Laboratories, you now have more options of beautiful diamonds to choose from.

If a traditional round brilliant diamond is too, well, traditional, consider one with a different shape. Fancy Shaped or Fancy Cut diamonds (as they are also known) are beautiful and sometimes even more affordable than the traditional round brilliant. They can also come with diamond grading reports so that you can best understand the diamond’s characteristics.

Here are four different cuts to consider when shopping for the perfect ring.

Square

Square often gets a bad rap. Teens in the 60s and 70s told their parents, “Man! You are so square,” as they stomped off to their room. But when it comes to diamonds, square cuts are a bit of a rebel. Next to round brilliant diamonds, they have plenty of sparkle. If your honey has a bit of a wild streak, go square, like this pretty piece from Ashi Diamonds, surrounded by round brilliants in rose gold.

Ashi_Offbeat

Emerald

Emerald cuts are another great alternative. Take this East/West emerald cut from Two by London. A simple halo of round diamonds and diamonds down the shank of the ring make this sparkler a winner.

Emerald Cut East West Two by London

Oval

Ovals are classic diamonds that are just a bit more cheeky than a round brilliant. They say, “I have a classic style, with a bit of an edge.” Just like this stunner from GJS USA.

GJS USA Oval Engagement Ring

Marquis

Oh Marquis, you grand ole’ cut. This shape is perfect for someone who likes glamor, glitz and loves to live OUT LOUD. Try to get over the memory of Carrie Bradshaw rejecting the marquis ring Aiden gave her. It was a different decade and it was fiction. Now check out this piece of art-for-the-finger from Supreme Jewelry. On top of all the other wonderful elements, you have to love the mix of white and rose gold!

Supreme Jewelry marquis

The right ring can be found with a little research and shopping around. One thing the right ring needs, though (besides the right person to give it to) is the right jeweler. Find the perfect jeweler here.

Could You Propose Without an Engagement Ring?

Man Making Proposal With Wedding Ring And Gift Box, Wedding ConcThe answer is, YES! It’s okay to think outside of the proverbial engagement ring box when it comes to popping the question. Picking the right engagement ring is a big decision and investment, putting a lot of pressure on the one proposing. They’re already feeling the stress of whether or not their heartfelt proposal will be jubilantly accepted.

But for those who don’t want to propose empty handed, AGS member, The Inspired Collection, has designed a creative and contemporary alternative: Wilshi – The Proposal Ring®. They have nine quality ring designs crafted from sterling silver and each comes in a hand-crafted wooden box.

“The idea came from chatting to lots of men and women who were wanting to plan a romantic surprise proposal but ended up proposing without a ring because they wanted their love to be a part of the selection process,” says Chris Benham, CEO of Inspired Jewellery Limited. “If he involved her in the selection process before the proposal then it would ruin the surprise. So we thought, let’s create a fun collection of rings that allowed him to make a surprise proposal and still drop down on one knee and surprise her.”

For your inspiration, here are a few of their beautifully designed rings:

Straight from the heart.
Wilshi® Heart Ring

Oceans of love.
Wilshi® Shell Ring

Shhh—it’s our little secret.
Wilshi® Secret Ring

Check out their website to see more designs, be inspired by the Wilshi® Epiphany story, and get some terrific proposal ideas!

Once the two of you are ready to shop for an engagement ring together, be sure to shop with a knowledgeable jeweler you can trust: an AGS credentialed jeweler. They will take the time to listen to your needs and help you pick out that perfect ring. Click here to find an AGS jeweler near you.

We wish you all the best this Valentine’s Day and may you and yours find the greatest happiness!

Shopping for an Engagement Ring? Give ‘em a Hint!

By Catherine Jessee, The Knot

November marks the first month of proposal season, the period between November and February when up to 38 percent of couples get engaged.* With so many to-be-weds on the market for an engagement ring, buying such an important piece of jewelry can seem daunting.

To lessen that stress, more couples are involving each other in ring research and shopping, but according to The Knot, some still struggle to describe the ring they’re looking for—though they might know what they like when they see it. Aiming to demystify the process of shopping for an engagement ring, the leading wedding brand has created a new service to make it easier for couples to navigate the process of buying a ring together.

knot-hint2The tool is called Hint, and it gives users a unique opportunity to learn more about the rings they prefer and—if they so choose—to drop a hint. “Eighty percent of grooms said they got a little input from their fiancées or one of her friends or family members before purchasing the ring,” said Kellie Gould, editor in chief of The Knot. “Hint takes the anxiety out of finding the right ring and makes it even easier to drop the perfect hint to your partner.”

Not only does the service help you identify your favorite styles—a must for all jewelry lovers—but it gives you the opportunity to collaborate with friends, family, and even your partner. Simply select six engagement rings you like and the service gives you personalized feedback that includes size, shape, and color that match your taste. The service also includes a list of specific ring designers to consider, which after dropping a “hint,” makes it easier for the proposer to connect with local jewelers.

* The Knot Real Wedding Study 2015

Unique Wedding Bands for Men

By Amanda L Colborn

For this week’s #WeddingWednesday we wanted to do something just a little different.  Usually we pay tribute to all the gorgeous variations of women’s wedding and engagement jewelry.  This week we wanted to get the men into the mix and shine the spotlight on just of few of the thousands of variations and options for men’s wedding bands.

Have you ever wondered why men wear wedding rings in the first place? Is it just tradition or a true sentiment of love?

Well, it is both!  In ancient Egypt, both men and women wore wedding bands as a symbol of their never-ending love.  Fast forward several hundred years to the early 1900’s in America — men were seen as the dominant sex, and they did not feel they needed to show their dedication and love to a woman.  Also, many men felt at that time that a ring on their finger would only get dirty at work and in the way, therefore men’s wedding bands fell out of fashion for awhile.  It wasn’t until World War II that men started wearing wedding bands more commonly, as a reminder of their dear wives back home and their commitment while overseas.  Men’s wedding bands continued to be common among military men, but it wasn’t until after the Korean War that they started to become more popular among civilian men.

Now, men have plenty of options and styles to choose from for whatever their fashion sense or lifestyle require.  Most commonplace, is the traditional and simple, wide band in either gold or silver.

However that doesn’t work for everyone, so let’s explore some updated and stylish new options for men:

Commanding Grey Titanium Dome Grid Band by Hearts on Fire

Commanding Grey Titanium Dome Grid Band by Hearts on Fire

First up we have this stunning band made from grey titanium. Durable and strong for long term wear.  This ring offers a unique grid design and three diamond accents.  Yes! Men can wear diamonds every day too!  What is nice about this ring is that the diamonds do not take away from the masculine appeal of this band.

Men's Black Paneled Cobalt Chrome Wedding Ring by Ritani

Men’s Black Paneled Cobalt Chrome Wedding Ring by Ritani

Next, we have this super sleek and sophisticated band from Ritani.  This band is perfect for the man who does not want or need a ring that commands attention, like a shiny gold or silver band.  This ring itself is much more demure and mysterious while still being completely durable and sleek for everyday wear.

Comfort Fit Band by Etienne Perret

Comfort Fit Band by Etienne Perret

The Etienne Perret band above features a unique design from the traditional men’s wedding band.  This ring features a squared top detail and a real diamond enhanced with red, all set in white gold.  This ring is for the man who wants something extra, a little extra elegance and a bold statement.  This ring is gorgeous and will work perfectly either dressed up or dressed down.

And there we have three great examples of how you can take the traditional men’s wedding band and upgrade it to fit your lifestyle and design preference.  Check with your local AGS Jeweler for more options and make sure to shop for your wedding bands together! Your partner in life may introduce you to a piece that you won’t be able to live without.  Good luck!