The New Rules Of Buying An Engagement Ring

Have you and your bb been together for like, 400 years? You’ve probably had The Talk then, yeah? It’s the one that comes after ‘are we a thing-thing?’, after ‘hey, so since you’re getting kicked out of your apartment… want to just move in here?’ – yep, it’s the marriage talk. Do you want to get hitched/when do you want to/etc etc.

For a really long time there, it seemed like 99% of your older cousins/siblings/friends were giving and receiving the same kinds of rings. Simply put, everything looked like a Tiffany & Co solitaire or some other variation. And bigger always = better. 
These days though, the “rules” have changed. As in, there are no rules. In fact, as someone who’s seen multiple friends get engaged over the last two years, I’d go out on a limb and say if anything, the days of the diamond solitaire are kinda over. Someone who’s switched onto this shift?
Sydney-based jewellery designer Natalie Marie, who’s making bank creating exceptionally beautiful non-diamond engagement rings that you won’t have seen on the ring of other other lass – and at a v. reasonable price-point, too.
We hit her up for the 411 on the rules of engagements rings in 2017 and this is what she has to say.

If a solitaire diamond suits your personality and style, then go for it mate! But more and more, people are vibing more unique (and much often cheaper) stones.
“I definitely feel that people aren’t tied to the idea of diamonds as a ‘necessity’ anymore, and are seeking out something that’s more of a personal expression of them and their style,” Natalie tells PEDESTRIAN.TV. “Our generation is full of couples who are in love and just want to celebrate that – and there has been such a strong move away from the traditional picture of what that needs to looks like.”

From onyx to opal and moonstone to morganite, there’s no end to the options when it comes to natural and coloured semi-precious stones, she adds.
“Natural grey or champagne diamonds are popular now, as well as semi precious stones. More and more people are opting for something softer and less sparkly than a traditional diamond. I am seeing clients inclined towards abstract designs, offset stones or East-West facing lines. Just generally a move towards the less traditional, more unique.”

Just look at some of these beauties.

Custom wedding set. Oval cut Rutilated Quartz with stacked crossover wedding band. Handmade in 18k gold. ?

A post shared by Natalie Marie Jewellery (@nataliemariejewellery) on

It used to be that you were given one ring as a declaration of love, and you wore that ring until your grandkids pried it off your finger before they lowered you into the ground. These days, though, it’s not uncommon for couples to choose a more budget ring to tide them over, and upgrade down the line according to improved finances and / or personal style.
“I like playing with fashion and jewellery and I don’t think any piece is forever,” explains bride-to-be Liana, who was proposed to with a moonstone. “I would have hated someone to spend $12,000 on a ring that I was a) scared to lose and b) maybe wanted to change in 20 years time. I also don’t think of myself as an entirely traditional person so I didn’t feel like a diamond was fitting for me.”
Add to that a constant fear of losing the damn thing – and, oh, that buying-a-house thing – and something around the $1,500-$3,000 mark looks a lot more attractive.
In the same way there are a million more options than your average diamond when it comes to the hero of a ring, there are just as many settings and materials to choose from. We all know about the more traditional pave and bezel settings, but there are also plenty of open-cuff, nesting (otherwise known as a stack) and even charm rings (that’s if you’re game enough to have a precious or semi-precious stone dangle from your finger as you’re doing the washing up *gulps*) for something more unique.
Likewise, not every engagement ring has to be a choice of silver or gold. Consider white gold, oxidized metals and – a crowd fave – rose gold. It suits pretty much every skin tone and looks A++++ with any stone.
(Almost) gone are the days where one partner surprises the other with an engagement, complete with a ring picked off a hunch. Most couples now prefer to do the ring-choosing together, either before the proposal or after.
“It’s an intimate process which enables both partners to feel equally involved, and it can be deeply rewarding to have created something so significant through a collaborative process,” explains Natalie. “Even when this isn’t the case I think couples are more vocal with each other about preferences and restraints, and it’s generally a much more open process than it has been in the past.”

Whatever your ring-vibe, why not enter our lil’ comp right here for the chance to win $20k? That’ll make deciding v. easy, no?