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Diamonds for the Holidays — When You’re Not Ready to Get Engaged

You want to give her a spectacular gift, but neither of you is ready to get engaged. Here are some ideas for diamonds — and how to give them.

There is a special woman in your life, and you’d love to get her a piece of really spectacular diamond jewelry for Christmas, Chanukah or Kwanzaa; but you’re not yet ready to get engaged. Can you pull out a box from your favorite jeweler and not set the expectation that it will be a proposal? Absolutely. Naturally you want to wait until you’re both ready for that step before you pop the question. Maybe you’re saving for your future, finishing school, or you just want to enjoy the courtship phase of the relationship before taking that next step (the step that usually involves something like a diamond solitaire!).

Well, take heart — though the giving of non-engagement-ring diamond jewelry can be something of a minefield, there are some tricks and tips to choosing the perfect piece and ways of presenting it to make sure the only tears you see are tears of joy.

A good rule of thumb for a non-engagement gift of diamonds is keeping it on the lighthearted side. These days there are dozens and dozens of diamond jewelry styles that are playful, fashion-forward and just plain fun — a luxurious gift that says, “I love being with you.”

The perfect pendant

Let’s be honest — just about every woman would love to add a diamond pendant to her jewelry wardrobe. And pendants are great for her unique style, no matter what that style is.

If her look is sleek, minimal and modern, a simple diamond drop will thrill her. Able to go with any outfit from dressy to weekend, a pendant is an amazingly versatile piece, and diamond solitaire pendants come in just about any carat weight to fit any budget.

If you want her pendant to have a bit more personality, choose a charm. A heart is a classic choice that says “I love you” every time she looks at it — and hearts come in many styles, from simple to fancy. Some heart pendants are set with a single diamond; others have multiple stones and even include some color gemstones or black diamonds. As for other pendant motifs, take a page from her book of interests. A good jeweler will have a wide variety of religious symbols so she can express her faith in a beautiful way. You should also be able to choose from floral designs, peace signs, abstract designs, musical notes, animals and more. A gift chosen to match her interests is that much more personal, and she’ll love that you took the time to consider what she loves. 

Whisper in her ear

Just like a simple diamond pendant, diamond stud earrings are something every woman should have in her jewelry wardrobe. A gift of diamond studs says you know she’s a classic — and that you want her to have beautiful things.

Simple studs come in a variety of carat weights to fit any budget. If you want to veer away from classic studs, there are many other styles of diamond earrings to choose from. Diamond hoops are another classic choice that are modern and fun — they can be hoops with channel-set diamonds all the way around or more contemporary-looking chunky circles inlaid with diamonds — sometimes combined with color gemstones or black diamonds for a super-modern look.

There are also dozens of diamond drop-style earrings to consider — anything from hearts to birds to geometric shapes. A gift of diamond earrings is one of the most popular and well-received holiday gifts you can give. 

Round her wrist

A modern, playful and fashionable diamond bracelet is a gift that shows you know she is a woman of the world. An up-to-the-minute style to consider is a simple, minimal cord (usually in black) adorned with a diamond charm — think funky, feminine and modern — maybe a bow, a heart or even a skull and crossbones! The woman who would love a diamond bracelet like this probably already has more classic pieces in her jewelry wardrobe and she wants to branch out — or she isn’t a “classics” type at all and she wants the world to know it!

If you want to keep it simple though, a diamond tennis bracelet is a great way to go — a flexible band set with diamonds. Sleek and sparkly, a diamond bracelet like this will be one she can’t wait to show to her friends! If she loves tradition or collecting things, consider giving her a charm bracelet and her first diamond charm — something to commemorate your holiday season together and let her know you’ll be adding to the bracelet in the coming years — a great way to show your commitment to her in the form of jewelry, before you take that big engagement step.

Wrap it up

Use some imagination when wrapping the gift — you may unwittingly boost her expectations if she unwraps a box clearly from a jewelry store. If you’re putting off the big engagement ring purchase for other reasons, consider what those are. If you’re saving for a house together, build a tiny one from cardboard, balsa wood or Legos and cradle the jewelry in it on some tissue paper. Medical school? Match a toy stethoscope with the diamond pendant.

If it’s just too soon for an engagement, think about your shared interests. If you’re foodies, there are colorful takes the on classic fold-out Chinese food takeout container that would put a lighthearted and thoughtful spin on gift wrap, and would be sure to delight her as she opens the top to see what’s inside. If you’re giving her earrings and you share a love of music, maybe augment it with a small mp3 player with the earrings nestled close to the ear buds. A diamond necklace can be paired with a beautiful sweater with a neckline that will show it off — and she won’t be expecting it if it’s stealthily sitting in a sweater-sized box.

Take some time to think about why you’re giving her diamond jewelry, and with a little imagination, you’ll find the perfect presentation.

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