Chicago Tribune reporter Danielle Braff was writing an article on "How to shop for engagement rings as a couple" when she reached out for tips.
I sent her some thoughts based on my experience creating rings for many lovely couples from all walks of life. My primary tip is communication, communication! Make sure both parties feel good about budget, material choices and design. My second tip is that the person wearing the ring gets to have final say, based on said budget and materials!
Here are a couple of excerpts from the article:
Have a conversation about sustainability:What is important to each of you? “For example, one partner may feel that a conflict-free stone is the most important, and the other might want recycled metals,” said Johanna Torell, jewelry designer specializing in custom engagement rings based in Stockholm and Santa Monica, California. “Settle on your demands and stick to them.” While it used to be difficult to find sustainable rings, there are many options today.
Don't purchase a ring that stresses you out financially:The wedding will also be expensive, so set a realistic budget and stick to it. The right jeweler will help you find the perfect ring within your budget, Torell said.
Don't worry about forever:It’s important that you love it now. People’s tastes don’t change that much, and if yours do, then it’s completely acceptable to redesign your ring for your 10th or 20th anniversary, Torell said.
Don't look only in big stores: There are so many places to find truly unique and different rings now. Consider local stores, Instagram, Etsy and independent designer websites, Torell said. You can get amazing service at smaller retailers, even in online stores, as these shops are often run by the designers themselves or by a small intimate team.