There are so many options available to couples shopping for an engagement ring. Jewelry stores offer rings in every design, shape and style. Many women prefer diamonds as their stone setting of choice, while others prefer a unique stone that has a significant meaning attached.
Since choosing a ring is strictly a decision based on preference, why not have a custom, handmade ring designed exactly the way you and your significant other envision it?
Committing to a Handmade Engagement Ring
Purchasing an engagement is one of the biggest commitments a couple can make, aside from the wedding ceremony and showing that commitment through a handmade engagement ring is a wonderful way to express this symbol of friendship, love and a bond that is meant to last a lifetime.
Participating in the design of a handmade engagement is personal and priceless and brings in true emotions that can represent a unique, creative and positive bonding experience between you and your bride to be.
The process begins with a consultation that gives a couple the opportunity to express how you envision your ring.
Design Takes Time
Keep in mind that the a handmade engagement ring is unique and the designing process is similar to creating a classic painting, and it will take time to create the piece exactly the way you want it.
Because it is custom handmade, your ring may also be a bit more expensive than a store bought piece, because the work that goes into the creation is intense and unique.
Jewelers specializing in handmade engagement rings will usually only use the best stones and the best materials create your one-of-a-kind, symbol of love. They will experiment with different sketches until the design is just right, and show you photographs of their work before the creating process begins.
Unlike traditional rings that are made from gold, silver or platinum, handmade rings can be made from rarer metals like rose gold, palladium, colored titanium or sage gold. Titanium is an elegant metal that comes in many colors including fuchsia, black rainbow, turquoise, sea green, yellow, royal blue, black purple and brown.
Choosing A Designer
Always choose a jeweler experienced in the art of designing handmade engagement rings. By searching the Internet, you will find many craftsmen offering their services, as well as jewelry companies and shops that sell traditional rings as well as the option to have one custom, handmade. You should always ask to see a designer’s portfolio of work previously done in order to get an idea of the type and quality of work he or she has completed for other clients.
What Information Will The Designer Need From Me?
Give the designer an idea of what type of metal you wish to incorporate into the ring band. If you choose titanium, indicate your color of choice. You must also give the designer an idea of what stone(s) you want embedded into the ring. Whatever your choice of stone(s), give the designer an impression of the setting you want as well.
If you are choosing diamond(s), make sure you are aware of the diamond cut and quality. This is usually determined by the budget you have set aside for your engagement ring. If you have an ancestor’s diamond(s) or other gems that you wish to incorporate into the design of your ring, most jewelers will be happy to use them. Aside from the sentimental value of using a loved ones stones, the cost of the ring could be reduced significantly.
How Do I Know The Designer Is Creating What I Want?
Communication between you and the designer is important. Make sure the designer provides you with photographs and allows you to see the progress of your ring as the creation progresses. Before the designer begins the process, try to draw sketches or provide photographs of the ring as you envision it so that he or she has an idea of what you want.
If you’re not happy with the ideas of one designer, don’t be afraid to see several designers and view their work before you make a decision to seal the deal with one. Make sure that the designer is not offering you a piece that has been designed before. You want your engagement ring to be a unique, one-of-a-kind expression of your love and devotion.
A Good Designer Will Work With You
If you and your bride-to-be have an idea as to the type of handmade engagement you want, an expert designer will turn that idea into reality by reworking and tweaking your ideas into the ring you have imaged. The concept should turn into or come very close to the design you envisioned.
If you aren’t sure what you want your ring to look like, a good designer will give you ideas using their own creative designs. The designer should ask questions about your likes and dislikes, your taste in stones, metals, etc, and move forward to create a design that matches your look and style.
Stages Of Creating A Handmade Engagement Ring
In most cases, a designer will work with an actual maker of the ring, and they will work closely together to give your ring the flare and details you are looking for. Metal that is usually purchased from a refinery will be formed into a collet or the part of the ring that will hold the stone or stones.
This is done using tools including saws, hammers and collet punches. Next, the shank is formed by hammering the metal and joining it to the collet. This is somewhat of a complicated process as they must fit squarely and straight in order to keep the shank circular and at the ring size desired. Once this is accomplished, the ring is filed and buffed and polished, and the stone(s) are set into place.
Bits of metal are pushed into position around the stone(s) to make sure they are securely in place. If you wish to have the ring engraved, an engraver will place the letters inside the shank of the handmade ring.
The last step is adding the finish to the engagement ring. The entire process could take approximately six weeks or more.
How Much Does A Handmade Engagement Ring Cost?
There are various considerations when determining how much a handmade engagement ring might cost. It all depends on how much you have to spend, the size you want, the quality and type of stone or stones and the metal and time it will take to make your design. In most cases, a ring can be designed to fit your budget and a good jeweler will give you the best value possible for the money you have to spend.
Realistically, you should have at least $500 to guarantee decent quality. If you have a stone or stones that have sentimental value, and you wish to use them in your setting, this will save you money as well. If your budget is small, a designer must suggest using a precast collet that can be adjusted to fit a ring. Using a less expensive metal or stones other than diamonds can also save you money.
Choices In Designs
You will need to decide whether you wish to have an asymmetrical or symmetrical shape to your ring, and whether you want the appearance of your ring to be dramatic and bold or more delicate.
Do you want the ring to be modern, classic or something in between? Most designers are skilled in Victorian, Medieval, Celtic and art deco creations, and will adjust the look to your specifications that could include aspects of your bride-to-be hobbies, life, likes, etc.
Surprising Your Bride-To-Be
If you wish to surprise your future bride, keep in mind that she may have specific tastes that you aren’t aware of. In cases like this, many jewelers will suggest that you propose with a box that contains sketches or a stone that signifies your intentions.
From there, you can go through the design process as a couple. You might also consider using a substitute ring in the presentation box that will be replaced with the ring you will later design as a couple.
Will I Have To Pay A Deposit
Usually, after a design is finalized and approved by you a 50% deposit is required. The ring is paid in full when it is completed and ready to be picked up. You will receive an invoice that gives the full value of your purchase for insurance purposes.
What About Designing A Ring Online?
If you wish to go online and design a ring, this can easily be accomplished by searching the Internet for “handmade engagement rings online ordering”. Once you place an order, to guarantee a ring will fit, the jeweler will usually send you a silver sizing ring that is the same width, thickness and size of the ring you are ordering.
Keep in mind that ordering on line is similar to working directly with a designer and ring maker, but the process will take between eight to ten weeks to complete.