As I outlined about 18 months ago, my then-boyfriend (later – fiance, now – husband) visited a variety of jewelry stores (all together, eight) before settling on the one from which he would purchase my engagement ring.
He worked with them for several weeks to come up with the perfect ring. Here’s the process he went through.
First, he worked with the jeweler to choose the perfect center stone. Once that was decided upon, the jeweler chooses the other stones to match in color and clarity. My then-boyfriend knew that he wanted the ring to have 5 stones – 4 side stones totaling a carat and the 1.5 carat center stone. He was focused on cut, clarity and color.
After the stones were decided upon and my then-boyfriend signed off on them, they began the ring-designing process. Here’s how that went:
* Bring photos of other rings that he likes.
* The designer sketched out a few designs and he chose one that he liked.
* Designer creates a 3-D drawing of the ring in a CAD program, and presents to him.
* They discuss changes, and the designer makes them, and presents a second drawing.
* Once approved, they had a 3-D wax model of the ring made.
* Designer shows to him, he suggests further changes, and designer executes them.
* Once the proper design has been created in wax and agreed upon, the ring was made and set with the stones that he (my then-boyfriend) chose.
The process took several weeks – 8 or so, by my estimation, but I could be wrong.
He paid the remaining balance and then hung onto the ring for WEEKS – even bringing it to Mexico and back home, as he thought about proposing there, but ultimately decided not to – opting for a sweet, more intimate and personal proposal.
How he kept this secret, I’ll never know.
GTB and I decided to look at wedding bands yesterday, to see what works for each of us and sign off on this task.
He tried on about 15 rings, with no clear winner. We know he wants a simple but not plain band with no yellow gold. That should be easy enough.
Then we went on to try to find a ring that works with my e-ring. I started with the band I’d envisioned I’d wear — a basic 3mm comfort fit band, and… it looked TINY next to my ring. Sigh.
I upgraded to the 4mm, same thing. My e-ring (and diamonds) looked ginormous next to that small band of gold.
I guess you just don’t notice how substantial something is until you compare it to something similar.
The woman helping me set off to find something more “fancy” (her words, not mine). She came back a few minutes later, shaking her head.
“I’m so sorry,” she said “your ring is just too fancy for anything we have.”
I felt discouraged and giddy at the same time. And developed a fresh round of admiration for my GTB and the gorgeous ring that he gave me 9 months ago.
Here’s a pic of the ring. For some reason, diamonds are REALLY difficult to take photos of!
Didn’t the GTB do a fantastic job? Even the edges are squared so it doesn’t turn on my finger.
Here we go!
The Bridezilla are a special breed of woman. Not everyone can be one, and not every ‘Zilla exhibits the traits until a sudden glint of a diamond suddenly switches something in their brains.
Here are the easy steps you must follow:
1. Cry with disappointment when your boyfriend proposes. Tell him that you really want to marry him, but simply can’t do that unless you’re wearing a 3 carat Tiffany ring.
2. Choose a wedding color down to the shade. Make sure that you won’t allow any variances, it must be THAT color, no exceptions.
3. Approach your bridal shop, hairstylist and makeup artist with a photo of EXACTLY what you want to look like. It doesn’t matter that the model is 16 years old, 6 feet tall and Brazilian with thick, lucious hair and full lips. You want to look exactly like her. If they can’t make it happen, they’re just trying to ruin your day.
Lots of jewelry shops offer “Tiffany-style” rings or “Cartier-style” rings.
The thing about this is that:
a. They are NOT Tiffany & Co or Cartier rings if they are being sold by another jewelry store
b. You won’t be fooling anyone with a “styled” ring
c. trademark and patent laws ensure that no other jewelry stores will be able to see a ring that looks “that much” like a Tiffany & Co/Cartier ring
d. Brands such as Tiffany, Cartier, Louis Vuitton and the like have been cracking down on counterfeiters and have been prosecuting
That doesn’t matter, you still want a ring that LOOKS like Tiffany & Co. or Cartier even if it isn’t.
No, not about getting engaged or getting married.
I decided that I won’t be happy unless I can have THIS diamond in THIS ring.
Its a 10.37 carat ideal cut stone. Isn’t it beauteous?
This puppy can be found on Blue Nile for a mere $737,000.
I really would need a crane to lift my arm.
But seriously — I wouldn’t want a stone THAT big anyway. I wouldn’t want my knuckles to drag from the weight (I already have so-so posture) and I wouldn’t want to be seen by robbers as the equivalent of a fresh t-bone left around a dog.
I am pretty certain I’ll be thrilled with the ring my GTB chooses — mostly because I love him and I know he’s putting a lot of thought and effort into it!
I’ve been told I tend to be methodical. It’s a nasty habit of mine that I tend to drag things out longer than they need to be. I can’t help that I like to be thorough and like to follow-through on things when I know I’m ready and I’ve done my homework.
Friends have told me that they bought their ring, more or less, overnight. I’ve heard the stories of shopping in a day and buying the following day. I’ve heard of friends who basically just got quotes and went with the best one.
I just can’t help that I’d never be able to do something like that. I want to be sure. I don’t want to think I cut a corner or that I didn’t ask for something I should have. I’ve had buyer’s remorse enough in the past to know I don’t want it again.
So, I’m making Landmark work for our money. I’m making them do every step I’ve read about and every step they’ve offered up. I’m going to ensure that I get the ring we both have in mind without her even knowing what she wants.
My apologies, Brian, but you’re going to have to keep jumping through these hoops. You’re going to have to fulfill my every last request until you’ve convinced me that this ring will be what I have in my head.
So far, I can’t complain a bit. So far…
Hmmm… a coworker asked me today about our new puppy (STELLA!), I said, “Oh, she’s fine. She’s so flippin’ cute.” My coworker chuckled and said, “That GTB is smart — divert you from engagement with a puppy.”
Is that how men think? Was Stella a ploy to keep from putting that ring on my finger?
I don’t think so… I’m mostly confident that that wasn’t the case. Mostly.
But if it was, well, I’ll take solace in the sweet puppy breathe and fluffy-love that is Stella.
What will I nag about after he gives me the ring?
Now, without having it or knowing what stage he’s in (and, ahem, waiting for the proposal as much or more than the ring), I am literally giddy with excitement. Almost all minutes of the day, at least while he’s in the metro area.
The suspense is delicious and damning at the same time.
So I wonder, after he proposes, what will I be able to bug and beg him about?
(note: I really don’t know what the ring looks like, this is simply a pretty, sparkly image for us to dream about and oogle over).
So, last night, the BTB and I are having a nice little discussion about dresses and invitations. You know, the kind of stuff that guys just can’t get enough of.
Then, out of nowhere, she says, “You know, you’re going to have to act like you keep going back to the ring store so that I don’t know when you actually got the ring…”
Damn. She’s gooooood.