Once you’ve started thinking about getting engaged and you’re planning a surprise, there are lots of ways to hone in on the right ring. Consider a few questions:

How much time do you have?

With us, the lost-wax custom process takes 4 to 6 weeks, with ample opportunities for your modifications and approval. If you don’t have that much time, there are simpler custom options, or it might be a good idea to find the perfect ring in our stock!

What’s her style?

Feminine, outdoorsy, classic, vintage or vintage-inspired? Take a close look at the jewelry she already has to inspire your design ideas, or inform your choice. Metal is another important design aspect to consider (platinum, rose gold, yellow gold, white gold? Something else?), and her existing jewelry will definitely help you make that decision.

What budget are you trying to stay within?

There are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to an engagement ring budget, contrary to popular belief. Determine what you’re comfortable with, and go from there! If you’re hoping to expand your budget, inquire about our Wells Fargo Jewelry Advantage financing option, interest-free for 12 months.

What type of central gem do you want?

There are lots of options! Diamonds are a great choice because they’re the hardest known substance on the planet…which means they’ll hold up after years of wear. Trust us, no matter how careful we are, anything we wear on our hands takes a beating over time. And even though a traditional round brilliant white Diamond is plenty beautiful, Diamonds can be all sorts of colors and shapes. If you want something even more colorful, the best alternative to a Diamond is another durable gemstone, like a Sapphire.

What style of setting appeals to you, and makes the most sense for her?

Again, the possibilities are endless, but there are a few practical questions to consider: is she active? Does she use her hands a lot at work? If the answer to either of these is yes, a lower-profile setting may be ideal. Try to keep in mind that you can love a design but need to modify it for your actual lifestyle. Vintage rings are delicate and detailed because, historically, they weren’t created to be everyday pieces; wearing bridal jewelry every day is a modern development, and the construction of a ring should be determined by the lifestyle of its wearer.

Do you know her ring size?

This part doesn’t have to be a major headache. Most engagement rings aren’t the correct size to begin with – that’s where a talented workshop comes in! The most accurate way to find a finger size is to have a jewelry professional determine your partner’s finger size using finger sizers. We size all rings made or purchased with us complimentary, before or after presentation. Most techniques you can find online to determine a ring size aren’t 100% accurate, but they can help you get really close! Check out this Ring-Sizer for guidance. If these techniques won’t work for you, rest assured that we can create the ring in an average size and size it after presentation.