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Must-Reads for Brides-to-Be

A quick guide to what a bride-to-be needs to know about wedding jewelry

You’ve got a lot on your plate these days, what with wedding planning and all! To make it as easy as possible for you to get all of the information you need to select the wedding jewelry that’s perfect for you and your fiancé, here’s a guide on how to approach the process and a roundup of the articles on JewelryWise we think you’ll find most helpful.

1. Selecting an engagement ring

Maybe your fiancé already proposed with the ring of your dreams. If that’s the case, you can skip reading this section altogether! However, some couples like to select an engagement ring together, so if you’re in that category, please read on.

In addition to deciding on the type and style of your engagement ring, there are other important considerations, like budget, but let’s not get into that just yet. First let’s focus on design to help you pinpoint what you like and talk budget later to narrow down the field. Here are the three main design-related factors to consider:

Your style preferences. Your personal style definitely comes into play, such as if you prefer a classic look or something more romantic or modern. An easy way to explore or confirm what style you like is to take this quick quiz.

How a ring will look on your finger. Yes, believe it or not, some rings look better on certain shapes and sizes of fingers. However, there’s a ring style to flatter every type of hand and there are ways to find the most flattering ring for your unique finger shape and size.
Non-traditional choices. It’s important to know that there are some out-of-the-box choices available that you may not have thought of – from colored gemstones to non-solitaire rings to mixed metals and more.

2. Choosing wedding bands

There are a few ways to go when it comes to selecting wedding bands. Check out Wedding Band Basics: What’s Out There, What to Look For to cover all your options. For brides-to-be, the most important consideration is how it looks with your engagement ring, since they’ll likely sit side-by-side for quite some time! There are four basic choices when it comes to wedding bands:

  • Matching bands – Bands that have the same design but are sized differently for women and men
  • Complementary bands – Bands that are different but look related
  • Engagement-wedding band set – Bands that specifically complete the look of the woman’s engagement ring
  • Non-matching bands – Bands that express the wearers’ different aesthetics

It’s a good idea for you and your fiancé to discuss your wedding band preferences as a couple before heading to the jewelry store. Needless to say, there are many choices, and having at least a preliminary plan can help you narrow down your choices.

3. Wearing other bridal jewelry

Many brides love to complement their wedding dress with just a hint of jewelry. Traditional choices include a gorgeous strand of pearls, a diamond pendant necklace or a pair of diamond earrings. Classic pieces like these are ones you’ll cherish forever and also create a solid foundation for a versatile jewelry wardrobe to last a lifetime. Alternately, the bride or groom’s family may have a piece of heirloom jewelry they want to give to the bride to wear on her wedding day. To make your wedding day jewelry even more special, you may want to consider engraving it with a personal inscription such as initials, the wedding date or a special message.

4. Taking care of your investment

Once you purchase your wedding jewelry, you’ll want to do a few key things to protect it. First, you may want to purchase a warranty or guarantee and service plan for your engagement ring from your jeweler. A warranty or guarantee usually covers the replacement of damaged or lost diamonds or certain gemstones for a lifetime. Some jewelers offer a warranty or guarantee on the diamonds or gemstones as part of the purchase price, while others may offer it at extra cost.

A service plan may be a good idea if you and your fiancée have active lifestyles and you think it’s likely your rings may be scratched or dinged at some point. For an engagement ring, a service plan covers things like resizing, re-tipping prongs, replacing the head that holds the diamond securely in place and tightening the stone.

Second, you’ll want to insure your jewelry to protect both its financial and emotional value. Your options for insurance are through renters and homeowners insurance policies, or through a jewelry insurance company. The cost of having insurance varies, but a good rule of thumb for an engagement ring – likely the most expensive piece of all of your wedding jewelry – is paying $1-2 for every $100 of your ring’s replacement value.

We know, it’s a lot to consider! But the more informed you are, the better choices you’ll make when it comes to selecting and protecting your engagement and wedding day jewelry. 

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