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Comfort Of Engagement Ring


mj_98101
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I'm trying to choose between three engagement rings we tried yesterday. We hate the regular engagement rings with the stone and obnoxious prongs sticking way out. We've spent hours shopping retail and online so far, and it keeps coming back to these two designs.

 

One was from Tiffany: a three-stone setting with a .52ct round flanked by two .20ct pears in east/west alignment for a little over $8K. We both fell for this right away due to the excellent design. I originally planned to reluctantly shell out $3K but realized I was excited enough about this ring to pay the $8K.

 

The other two were from Ben Bridges: streamlined solitaires with either .70ct or 1.00ct stones for $7K - $11K depending on size and quality of stones. The diamonds shown in that price range were lower quality than the Tiffany ring. My fiance and I had previously ruled out solitaires, but liked this particular Ben Bridges design. I found myself turned off by the price, as well as a perception the overall quality (setting design + stones) was lower than the little Tiffany ring.

 

I've attached images resembling both designs if anyone's curious.

 

QUESTION #1: My fiance felt the Ben Bridges ring was more comfortable than the Tiffany ring. She's never worn rings before, but intends to wear this forever, along with a (future) wedding band. She's a size 4 3/4 and of course the Tiffany ring was shown in size 6. Is the comfort difference likely to go away when the ring is correctly sized?

 

QUESTION #2: She's excited by both rings, but has a slight preference for the Ben Bridges ring. I have a strong preference for the Tiffany ring -- I see it as a better execution of a better design which we'll be happier with in the long run. I can get excited about buying her the Tiffany ring, and (thus far) not excited about buying her the Ben Bridges ring. How have others dealt with this, and what was the outcome?

 

QUESTION #3: Would it make sense to buy a different diamond online to fit the ($2K) Ben Bridges setting?

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My 2 cents:

 

1. Who knows? If the (dis)comfort was due to the shank floating around, probably yes. If it was due to the setting being too wide for her rather slim hand (with the pears' points hitting the other fingers), probably not.

 

2. Finding a third ring that you both can be happy (if not excited) about. How many others have you seen and tried on?

 

3. Probably yes, especially since you were not particularly happy with the quality (or price/quality ratio) of their stones. The only question is who would set the stone? Would BB be happy to do that on a third party stone, or would the stone supplier be happy to work on a setting that they may not stock?

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If it was due to the setting being too wide for her rather slim hand (with the pears' points hitting the other fingers), probably not.

I hadn't thought about this. We'll go back to the store (a third time) and check. Thanks!

 

2. Finding a third ring that you both can be happy (if not excited) about. How many others have you seen and tried on?

We spent most of yesterday going to three large stores (downtown Seattle) so far, and three small stores. Plus a lot of time online. I underestimated the effort, time, and cost involved with this!

 

I think it's worth it because one of my married friends reported hating her engagement ring (which she bought for herself at the first store she visited) and is now getting it redone.

 

Here's what my married friend wrote -- I think it's pretty interesting:

I have a lot of opinions about engagement ring. I hate it hate it hate it :o). I do agree with you about the obnoxious sticking-out prong style! I HATE IT. It's designed to make the diamond look bigger than it's actually is. Ugly and tacky (and that's what I have, but I can't complain. I bought it because I was too lazy to shop for it. I just wanted it done, I went to only one store, and it was the only one with a nice sparkling diamond on it). But I intend to change it on my birthday by converting the Christmas gift Andrew gave me last year

 

...

 

On your question #1: It's not only the ring size. It is also the diamond too. The ring has to fit, and the diamond surface must not be pointy and stick too far from the finger (both the diamonds look fine though the shape of the Tiffany diamond could be problematic). My finger size is 51/4 or 51/2 depending on the temperature, and my ring size is 6. Very uncomfortable because the ring keeps turning, so the diamond sometimes faces inward. When I wash my face, it scratches my skin or when I wash my hair it gets stuck in it and entangles my hair. And when my hands get cold (which is very often), both rings sometimes fly off my finger when I gesture with my hand. Very annoying.

 

So make sure that she is very comfortable with the ring. The ring should fit perfectly and the diamond not too high and pointy.

 

question 2: She is going to wear the ring. Let her choose what she likes. Otherwise, it would defeat the purpose of shopping for the ring with her. I bought the ring myself because we were long distance then (and I have never asked Andrew for 'reimbursement'). So the issue has never come up. As for me, I prefer the shape of the ring (though I am not crazy about the diamond). More importantly, the ends of the Tiffany diamond are pointy and stick outward which would potentially trap her hair when she washes it (if she has long hair, it could be problematic as long hair being trapped in a lathering motion would become entangled).

 

The Tiffany ring pears are actually better integrated into the ring surface than the attached photo suggests. The photo is of an imitation of that ring. But we are going back to the store to make sure this doesn't affect comfort.

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They both look like very classic styles that can be found just about any place. I would go with the one that she is comfortable with. You can always find a better quality center diamond online and have it put in the ben bridge setting or maybe someone else can actually make that setting and save you some more as well. :o

 

You don't have to go with either a 1/2 ct. or a 1.00 ct. either. There are lots of sizes color and clarities on in between sizes that can fit your budget for the stone.

 

What is your budget for the center diamond?

 

$8000 for a little half carat with pearshapes on the side is quite outrageous price wise.

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We figured out why the Ben Bridge setting was more comfortable. The outside edge of the Tiffany ring is more angular. She feels this against her adjacent bony (4 3/4) fingers. For me this rules out the Tiffany ring even though it looks so magical in the store. (I noticed the lighting in the store helped with this.)

 

They both look like very classic styles that can be found just about any place. I would go with the one that she is comfortable with. You can always find a better quality center diamond online and have it put in the ben bridge setting or maybe someone else can actually make that setting and save you some more as well. :o

 

The saleslady at Ben Bridge wasn't open to using a different diamond I obtained elsewhere because the ring is intended for their "signature" diamonds, which are cut differently I suppose. This sounds like B.S. to me. I'm hoping someone here has gotten around this because we really do like the setting.

 

The six other Seattle stores didn't have a comparable setting. I've checked some websites, including Amazon, and not finding it so far. Amazon had one vaguely similar, but not available in her size!

 

I haven't explored custom made -- that sounds intriguing. If someone who does this wants to contact me offline (especially in Seattle or San Francisco) I'd be happy to talk to you.

 

 

What is your budget for the center diamond?

 

$8000 for a little half carat with pearshapes on the side is quite outrageous price wise.

 

Yeah. I'm currently thinking around $4500-$7000 for the whole thing.

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