The engagement ring is a western ritual a rite proof passage even, it is probably more inspected, commented upon and judged than a wedding ring. In fact a cheap wedding ring is acceptable whereas the actual cost of the engagement ring is often discussed openly with out shame. Many years ago the Diamond Company de Beers invented the rule that one should spend three month's salary on an engagement ring - naturally this was their opinion but it has caught on and permeated society to a fair extent. We now live in harsher times and noone complains at slight personal austerity measures though there will be some expectation at a lavish gesture of sorts when it comes to buying that ring and proposing. There is also the subtle interpretation that the traditional gesture was one designed to display financial security on the groom's part.
Anyway, whatever your budget there are a lot of choices out there for buying a ring. Traditionally rings will have a 'sparkler' set into them with the most popular gemstones being rubies, emeralds and, of course, diamonds. (it is important when purchasing valuable gemstones that you ensure that they have been ethically sourced via the Kimberley process so as not to be contributing to death and crime in source regions.)
The choice of stone or stones will determine to a large extent the price range you are looking at but the metal will come in to play to a vast extent. Engagement rings come in a wide choice of metals but the main ones will be silver, gold and platinum. Gold itself comes in various qu laities and colours like rose gold, yellow gold and white gold.
Finally there is the design to consider. I do not believe that it would be presumptuous to say that most people would like something special, something unique crafted for their loved one on for proposal day. Well rather than start looking on the main Ratner type stores one could well be advised to look for an actual jeweller, one who creates small pieces of unique art for finger adornment.
You will rarely find one of these shops on the high street, they are tucked away in cosy areas in many towns. Many of these jewellers will have online presences also. One such website is Jeremy Hoye who sells, amongst many items, engagement rings at http://www.jeremy-
Whatever, and this is only a personal opinion, I believe that if love is the issue, the more you spend the better!
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