It’s a bit strange making this announcement as I think most of you already know that on a beautiful June afternoon under the Drakensberg mountains, Beau got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! It was THE most perfect proposal! Sometimes when I think about, it still feels surreal, like a warm fuzzy dream. There was a resounding YES that echoed through the mountains and a beautiful ring… I wanted to share with you some of my tips if you are thinking about designing your own engagement ring or a special piece of jewelry and in particular what I learned from my experience.
I had been following a jewelry designer in Pretoria for some time on Instagram (recommended by my trusty Kirstini) and I became quite smitten with all their beautiful and detailed designs. It became clear to me that I wanted Lorean Britz to do us this honour and after emailing him, well he said yes! I wasn’t sure of the exact ring I wanted but I did have a couple guidelines to start with. I knew I wanted an antique looking setting and a rose-cut diamond, something my Grandmother would have worn. I felt that the shape, dimensions, and cut of the stone were most important.
What can I say about Lorean? He and his wife are an awesome team and I was always quite taken with the gorgeous detail on his designs. Not only is he incredibly talented but you get the sense that he is super passionate about what he does. He would take the time to walk me through each part of the process and made sure we were always on the same page before proceeding, it was actually enjoyable and I didn’t feel stressed at any point; which I had expected to with such an undertaking. He sourced the stones from India and once we had decided on the placement and the band, I took a step back and handed everything over to Beau. We decided that an element of surprise would make things a bit more special and so although I had an idea of what the ring would look like, I didn’t see the finished piece until my man was on bended knee. It quite literally made me gasp when I saw it! It is a magnificent ring with the most beautiful and unusual diamond. I catch myself staring at it all the time and can’t believe I am the lucky girl who gets to wear it, and of course marry the man of my dreams… 🙂
Thinking about having an engagement ring or special piece of jewelry made? Some tips for you:
1 | Chat to your partner first
I wanted us both to be involved in the process and we chatted a LOT about going this route first and weighed up all the options. It made it a special and exciting process and I am glad we decided to do what we wanted rather than stick to ‘the norm’. I know Beau would have picked a beautiful ring but the pressure would have been a lot, I don’t wear a lot of jewelry and tend to be quite fussy. Given that an engagement ring can be costly, it felt better to know we were getting something that suited and something we were going to love. (Don’t forget to agree on a budget too, ladies who are totally unreasonable about how much these things should cost are missing the point – don’t be like those ladies).
2| Find a Jeweler whose work you love
… who is credible and professional. I followed Lorean on Instagram for a while and I loved the style and designs of all their pieces, infact I got my ideas from previous work they did. Obviously, you should do your due diligence on credibility and ethics but it is good to also make sure their designs suit your style and you get the feeling that you would be singing from the same hymn sheet.
3| Pick the stones first
This wasn’t obvious to me at first. Your stones are the main attraction and probably the most expensive part. It is a good idea to do some research and familiarise yourself with different styles and cuts. Also, there are some exquisite rings out there using stones other than diamonds so definitely keep that in mind. For me, I’m a diamonds are forever kinda gal!
4 | Try rings on
You are going to be wearing your ring for a long time, it’s important to check some styles out and see what they look like on you. I thought a lot about the style I wanted but at one point was getting flustered because there were sooo many pretty shiny rings but I could only pick one! Try not to over think it and go with your instincts, trust me once yours is complete, you will forget about all the others.
5| Plan ahead and Don’t panic
Okay, that was actually two points but they go hand in hand…Getting engaged is such a beautiful and exciting time, you want to enjoy it and for the right reasons. If you do your research, pick a designer you love and look for enough inspiration to give you a good base point then you are off to the right start. Then I would suggest being intimate with the process but allow some ‘give’ along the way, also being open to suggestions. You definitely don’t want to rush through any steps on this, take time at each stage.
At the end of the day, it really comes down to you as a couple and your personal preferences. Designing a ring and getting engaged was the fun part, we now are set with the task of planning a wedding….eeeeeep!
But first… here’s a smushy kissy picture…
Have a fabulous weekend Lovelies!