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Five tips on how to choose the perfect engagement ring

Be ready to take notes.

Top tips on choosing the perfect engagement ring

With Christmas being one of the most popular seasons to pop the question, it is no surprise why we thought it would be a great opportunity to take jewellery advice from an experienced industry expert.

And who would be better to ask for such advice than Rowena Cumner, the founder of Agent Engagement? With years of experience in sourcing the most breathtaking engagement rings, Rowena is definitely the right person to inspire you during the stressful jewellery hunt:

1. Power of 5

There are actually five different ways you can create or purchase an engagement ring, but the big brands that have the luxury of spending millions on advertising each year, will only ever tell you about their own. Be sure to think through the different methods in case you’re drawn to one in particular:

  • Antique & Vintage dealers, who tend to have considered and collated collections
  • Bespoke Designer-Makers, who will design according to your wishes
  • The online and high-street retailers, who can show you finished rings as you walk into the store
  • The luxury brands
  • Jewellers, who will give you the help, guidance and bench to actually ‘Make your Own’ – most often for wedding ring rather than engagement though

Ruth Tomlinson champagne diamond solitaire engagement ring

 2. Think outside of the box and support British designer-makers where possible

Working with a designer-maker, is hugely rewarding and not as daunting as you might think. Their expertise will guide you on what’s possible and exactly because their craft is creative and artistic, they are likely to challenge you with lots of inspiration and share information about diamonds, precious stones and gemstones you might not have even known existed before.

Many people think that working with a bespoke maker is more expensive than walking into a jewellery store, but that’s really not the case. Designer-makers can source stones and materials from anywhere in the world and you can go on a journey to create the design of a ring, without being pressurised into buying a finished article. Makers tend to take the time to talk to you about the type and design of ring you would like to make, create CAD drawings and then set to work. Photographing the ring as it is being made is a nice touch many of them offer, as it’s so easy for them to do – yet very special for you.

Top tips on choosing the perfect engagement ring

3. A ring to suit your lifestyle

Really think about day-to-day day life with the engagement ring. For instance, if the wearer uses their hands a lot as part of her job or hobbies, be careful to chose a style which isn’t going to constantly get caught, knocked easily or require a lot of care and attention. Most importantly, there’s nothing less romantic than overstretching your finances in order to buy a certain type of diamond or ring. Be sensible and don’t commit to something which you can’t afford.

4. Ethics and traceability

Any good gemologist should be able to show how a diamond or stone has been certified and even which part of the world it has come from. There are many different ways of grading diamonds, with GIA (Gemological Institute of America) certificates being the most popular – but don’t rule out other methods of testing just because you’ve heard GIA is the most famous. Know what your 4 C’s stand for when looking at diamonds (Cut, Colour, Clarity and Carat weight) so when a jeweller tells you about the spec of a stone, you can sense-check online how much that should sell for in the present market.

5. Fantastic care and service

Over an afterthought, but actually really important is the care you’ll receive long after you’ve left your jeweller’s door. It’s now very common to expect free returns, free ring sizing and free warranties to ensure the ring is repaired if you have any issues. Speak to your jeweller about their standard procedures and practises.

Got more questions? Rowena will be more than happy to help – email any queries to Also, don’t forget to book your appointment at The Wedding Gallery to get more wedding inspiration and find the ultimate proposal bling.

by Alexia Sakellariou