Engagements

Seven seriously good tips on how to shop for an engagement ring

Irish jewellers share their best advice for finding your perfect piece

Engagement ring shopping ain't easy.

And chances are, even if you've always had a style in mind that you would go for for your own, when it comes to actually making the big purchase.

Before you head out on your quest to find the one to rule them all, arm yourself with these expert tips on finding the perfect sparkler to suit your style and budget.

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1. Magic over money

"Money doesn’t make magic," says Chupi, owner and founder of namesake jewellers Chupi.

"We often get caught up on the price but it’s the love that goes into choosing the ring that really counts. We produce beautiful, bespoke engagement rings that are kind to your wallet. Each ring is produced in Ireland with recycled gold and conflict-free diamonds so you can rest assure that your purchase is ‘Made with love for the one you love'."

2. Emotional connection

"I would say think about something you will still love in ten years time as it’s the one piece of jewellery you wear everyday," advises Louise Stokes, owner and founder of Loulerie.

"I would also say think of something that really suits your personal style and that you adore. Jewellery is all about your emotional connection to the style."

3. Make something old, new

"Choose the ring you want and not what history or tradition tells you is an engagement ring," Ann Chapman, owner of Stonechat jewellers in Dublin's Westbury Mall advises. "There are no rules! Ultimately you will be the one wearing the ring and looking at it for the rest of your days, so don’t be swayed by opinions of others."

Ann also advises couples to consider giving old and heirloom jewellery a new lease of life by incorporating it into a new piece. "Brides and grooms often add extra meaning to their rings by incorporating old jewellery into their new ring, whether its gold or a stone. We can incorporate a family heirloom in a new design, creating something completely unique. Most gold and gemstones can be re-used, whether it’s a treasured piece you would like to include in your big day, or an out-of-fashion brooch or ring. Rather than allow old jewellery to languish in a drawer."

4. Quality counts

"Go for quality," insists Madeline Hanlon, shop manager for luxury Grafton Street jewellers Boodles, "you cannot improve on a poor cut, colour or clarity once the diamond has been purchased. Platinum is a superior metal for a ring that will be worn every day. The cost of the ring will be long forgotten when the quality is still being enjoyed years later."

5. Forget trends

"Try not to get swept away with trends," suggests jewellery designer Deirdre O'Donnell, "jewellery that is traditionally and beautifully made with a contemporary feel with stand the test of time."

6. Stick to your budget

"I would advise anyone shopping for their own or their partner’s engagement ring to stick to a realistic budget," says Seamus Fahy, owner and founder of Voltaire Diamonds.

"Gone are the days of having to spend three month's wages on a diamond ring. I always advise clients that it is important to enjoy the process and avoid feelings of guilt of stress where possible."

7. Try different styles

Maeve Lynch from jewellery designer Rudolf Heltzel says "Go for a style that suits your hand. Try on different styles; a bit like clothes, sometimes a style will suit you that you hadn't even thought of."

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