What Kind of ring
Would she like?

You know her better than anyone. Our ring styles guide will help you understand the terms for some popular styles of rings. You may want to enlist help from her friends or family because chances are they already know. Or check out her Pinterest or Instagram page if she has one. A lot of times women will post their dream styles (just in case you were wondering).

Ring Styles

Has she mentioned what kind of ring she likes and you have no idea what that means? This is a list of some of the most popular styles for engagement rings.

Ring Styles

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How to Choose The Best Metal for Her

The main metals for engagement rings are gold (white or yellow) or platinum. This is because they are precious metals that hold their value and have many hundreds of years of time tested proof that they are the best to hold precious gems. While there are other metals available, and Colonial Jewelers can supply them for you, we recommend either gold or platinum for her engagement ring.

How to Choose
The Best Metal for Her

Choosing between a white metal (white gold or platinum) or yellow metal (yellow gold) is based on her preferences. Both white gold and platinum look the same when they are brand new or freshly refinished, but they each have their benefits.

Platinum of course is a very strong metal. Unlike other metals it does not wear away; it merely displaces. Think about moving your hands through sand. It moves to the side but doesn’t go away. Platinum is also very rare, which is why it is more expensive than other metals. When you own a piece of platinum jewelry you own something very rare and valuable. Platinum is 100 % pure which means it is not alloyed with other metals. This feature allows platinum to always remain a cool, white color and makes it hypoallergenic. Platinum is the first choice for setting Diamonds as it will be the strongest metal.

White gold is a more cost-effective way to get the “look” of platinum. White gold was first used during World War I when platinum was only available for military use. Many couples choose white gold for their bridal jewelry because it has a modern white look and it costs about a third of the price of Platinum. White gold is Gold which is alloyed with white metals (Nickel, Palladium and others) to give it a white look. Because Gold is naturally yellow and has a "memory", over time White Gold will need to be dipped in Rhodium to keep it bright white. The amount of time that a white gold ring needs to start to turn yellow completely depends on the wearer. More vigorous wear, cosmetics and lotions will all speed the discoloration process.

The choice is up to the consumer. With a given budget, customers may decide they would like to spend more on the setting and therefore choose platinum. Or they may choose to spend more on the Diamonds, therefore choosing white gold. Either choice is perfectly acceptable in both fashion and integrity of the ring.

Diamonds
Facts vs Fiction

Fiction: Diamonds are not as rare as people say.
Fact: Only about 25% of the diamonds mined are suitable to be used in jewelry. Of these gem-quality diamonds, many are highly included, have a yellow or gray hue and/or are very small. So while diamonds are common, high quality, larger diamonds are rare.
Fiction: All GIA graded diamonds are the "best" diamonds.
Fact: When GIA grades a diamond, they are doing just that, grading it, whether good or bad. You can get a GIA graded diamond that is low in color, clarity or poorly cut.
Fiction: All diamond certifications are the same.
Fact: There are a number of agencies that grade diamonds. Many of them are very lenient in their grading. GIA created the 4 C's grading system for diamonds and uses the strictest standards for grading diamonds still today. Bottom line is that when you buy a GIA graded diamond, you know you are getting exactly what the report says you're getting.
Fiction: Diamonds are indestructible.
Fact: Diamonds are the hardest gemstone and can only be scratched by other diamonds. They can, however, be chipped or even broken if hit the right way and with enough force.
Fiction: You have to spend 3 months salary on the diamond for an engagement ring.
Fact: There is no set amount you have to spend. She doesn't want you to break the bank. And, neither do we! You can get her the ring of her dreams within a budget that's comfortable for you.
Fiction: If I see a Diamond that has the same color, clarity and carat weight and it’s cheaper, it must be a good deal, right?
Fact: It depends. If it really is the same (even the dimensions, proportions, grading certificate and all other factors) you still need to see them in person. Two diamonds can have identical specs and one is just more beautiful than the other. So it really is a good deal only if it looks better because that is what matters when she is wearing it.

Why the Cut of a Diamond Matters

The cut of the Diamond is probably the single most important factor of the 4 C's. By cut, we mean the proportions and dimensions of the Diamond as opposed to the shape (round, princess, cushion, etc). The reason it is the most important is that it holds the key to the diamond’s beauty. No matter what the color, clarity, shape or carat weight of a diamond- if it is well cut it will have life and sparkle. If it is poorly cut, it will not. Even the most colorless, flawless, largest Diamond will not be as beautiful if it is poorly cut. If you see a Diamond that seems too good to be true in specs and price, it most likely is poorly cut, so beware.

The precision with which a diamond is cut is the most critical factor in releasing its “fire” and “brilliance”. Since it is the only factor that humans can control, it may be the most important of the 4 C’s. During the cutting process, fifty percent of rough diamond material is usually lost. The facets, or planes, of the diamond should be placed in exact geometric relation to each other, the culet or “point” should be in the exact center of the bottom of the diamond and the diamond needs to be well polished. This symmetry is crucial for light entering the diamond to be reflected back to the eye as “fire”. Once these geometric proportions are compromised, the beauty and brilliance of the diamond are sacrificed for size. To achieve a diamond’s truly dazzling radiance, it must be cut precisely. At Colonial Jewelers, we make no compromise in this area of diamond quality.

Ideally Cut

Light is reflected from one facet to another and then disperses through the top of the diamond.

Too Deep

Light escapes through the opposite side of the pavilion.

Too Shallow

Light passes through the pavilion before it can be reflected.

Comparison of Lab Reports

Diamonds are often graded by a gemological laboratory to ensure accuracy of their quality. There are around a half dozen gem labs that offer “Certs” or certificates that are recognized in the jewelry trade. The best and most reliable lab is the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), which has developed the current standards for Diamond Grading. Their reports are consistently the most accurate and they are regarded as the Leading Authority on Gemology. Another respectable Lab is the American Gemological Society (AGS). There are many other labs with varying degrees of accuracy. It is best to choose a jeweler who has a trained and licensed GIA and AGS Gemologist on staff to choose their Diamonds.

Some companies may use the term “certified” loosely to refer to their own representation for the Diamond. If you are told a Diamond is “certified” be sure to ask which lab the certificate is from.

Choosing a Certified Diamond is a personal option. If you trust the place and person with whom you are doing business it becomes less important. A certified stone does command a higher price because it must go through one more step on the way to the consumer. At Colonial Jewelers we independently grade all Diamonds that we sell, including those that are Certified.

What’s Next

So you have been educating yourself all about Diamonds and engagement rings… That’s awesome! Your next step is to come in to see some Diamonds and engagement rings in person. We know there are a ton of places out there, especially online, selling engagement rings and Diamonds for really cheap. It’s important to remember- there is a reason they are cheap, and it’s not just low overhead. A picture doesn’t show you the quality of the metal in a setting, or even if it is solid or hollow. And not being able to see the Diamond means you can’t tell if you are getting her a beautiful Diamond or one that just looks good on paper. She is going to have this ring for a very long time. Looking long term, you will see how important it is to have a physical place to take the ring for care and cleaning and for lifetime maintenance. You may be pleasantly surprised just how competitive our prices are when you actually come in and compare apples to apples. Our team of knowledgeable, friendly professionals are here to meet with you and help you find the perfect ring for her. We have three GIA Graduate Gemologists on staff to professionally select the Diamonds that we have for you. We are a fourth generation jeweler who will stand behind all of our merchandise for years to come.

Phone | 301.663.9252
1 South Market Street, Frederick, MD