Whether you’re about to pop the question to your girlfriend or you are a newly engaged couple on the hunt, picking an engagement ring can be tricky. Thankfully, Sarah Gibson from Larsen Jewellery fills us in on the simple must-knows, from the cut and colour to choosing ethically, that will help you find the perfect sparkler. Here are her top tips:
The biggest tip when purchasing a diamond, no matter if you are buying in store or online is that if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. With diamonds it is a case of “you get what you pay for”. Remember, you don’t have to spend tens of thousands to afford a beautiful stone. Set a budget that is realistic to you. Your jeweller will be able to help you design and find the perfect ring to suit you.
The origins of your diamond is one of, or the, most important factor when purchasing your diamond. So what does it mean when we talk about ethical engagement rings?
The most important thing is traceability. Where did your diamond / gemstone come from? Where did your metal come from? Since the movie Blood Diamond there has been a shift in industry standards and protocol as well as a greater understanding of the dangers of the diamond industry across the wider community.
So check with your jeweller that they support ethical diamond and gemstone trade practices and that they only sell conflict free diamonds. Choosing a jeweller that belongs to a known jewellers association that has a strong code of ethics offers peace of mind. In Australia, the two major associations are the Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) and the Gold and Silversmiths Guild of Australia (GSGA).
When working towards a budget, what should your top priority be? Firstly, we always recommend quality over size. You might be able to afford a larger size diamond, but if the quality is poor it will appear dull and lifeless, missing the brilliance that is so desirable.
Chances are if you are starting your search for an engagement ring you would have heard of the 4c’s – carat, colour, cut and clarity. This is the grading system that is used to determine a diamond's quality and is reflected by the price.
It is widely agreed that the most important of the 4c’s is the ‘Cut’. How a diamond is cut, the proportions, symmetry and polish determines how a diamond will reflect and refract light. In a diamond that is well-cut, light enters through the table and travels through the stone where it is reflected from one side to another before the light is returned back to the viewer’s eye creating that sparkle that we all love! Your diamond might have a high colour and clarity grading, but it is the cut that gives your diamond its beautiful sparkle.