A 6-step guide to creating the perfect custom engagement ring

Conger's Custom Solitaire Engagement Ring
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A 6-step guide to creating the perfect custom engagement ring

These days we are delighted by personalized content no matter where we turn. We receive customized recommendations for new playlists, movies, TV series based on what we had listened to and watched earlier. We see suggestions online which are specific to our interests and purchase history.

Generic is not relevant anymore. We have an underlying desire for a unique and targeted experience.

Proposing to your loved one is a special moment that both of you will remember forever. You make a lifelong commitment to each other. I’m sure you would agree that such an exceptional occasion is also worth providing a tailor-made experience. Make your loved one feel special by giving a custom engagement ring. Add your own touch to this precious piece of jewellery and let it reflect the uniqueness of your relationship and love.

This 6-step guide will take you through the smooth process of creating the perfect custom engagement ring that your partner will gladly wear every day for the rest of their life.

Jewellery – A business of trust

When selecting your jeweller, you are beginning a relationship. A relationship of trust. This person will help you celebrate one of life’s most precious moments.

You might not have spent much time buying jewellery before, and chances are, this is the first time that you have purchased a custom engagement ring. Of course, you want to make sure that you work with an educated and trustworthy jeweller. But how will you know that you have found a professional, when jewellers are all over the place?

Being a Graduate Gemologist with the distinction of ”Earned in Residence” at the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) means you can lean on my expertise to insure a trustworthy and honest service. This distinction is important as it goes above and beyond the norm.

Most gemologists enroll in distance education study. Residence students are strongly immersed in the world of gemstones as they are exposed to much more testing in the field of gem identification and diamond grading. This key difference is imperative and leads back to trust. Purchasing a piece of jewellery is always special. Having been in the jewellery business for 40 years and having run my own retail store successfully for three decades means I have a solid and reliable background.

A picture of a custom made halo engagement ring by Conger's Jewellers, Ottawa

1st step: Nail down the style of your custom engagement ring

There are so many custom engagement ring styles and designs available out there. You might find it hard to decide which one you should choose. But you can turn the selection from a bumpy ride to a fun and smooth experience.

Even if you can’t pinpoint the perfect shape and style immediately, make sure that you at least have an idea of what kind of ring you would like. The possibilities are limitless with custom design, so you might want to do some research beforehand. Use platforms such as Instagram or Pinterest to discover shapes and styles which you think would be right.

By looking at these pictures I can get an indication of what you imagine as the perfect engagement ring. Obviously, for inspiration, I am able to show you rings which I have designed. Should it be a solitaire ring? Or is a halo engagement ring better? Or do you want something outside of the box?

Venture off the beaten paths and we will figure out something completely different. The array of choices is wide and together we will create a one-of-a-kind ring based on your ideas.

If you want to be 100% confident about your choice, you can involve your significant other in the process. Designing a custom engagement ring can be fun together. Perhaps she can share ideas she added to her Pinterest account with you.

2nd step: Have a spending plan for your custom engagement ring

Having a price range in mind is essential to find the right custom engagement ring which will fit your budget. You will see that prices vary broadly as they are determined based on a lot of diverse factors, such as the size, the type of gemstone and the type of metal. Despite all the myths regarding how much you should be spending on an engagement ring, no rule is set in stone. Boil it down to a price that you are comfortable with. This will serve as a guide for the decisions going forward.

Would you like to discuss your ideas for a custom engagement ring?

Contact me. I would be happy to offer suggestions and give you a quote.

3rd step: Choose the stone of the engagement ring

Once you have decided on the style and your budget, it’s time to think about the stone(s). What kind of stone would you like to see in the ring? Diamond or perhaps a coloured gemstone? How many do you want? Where? What size? What colour?

Of course, diamond is still the most popular option. But other gemstones are also gaining popularity.

If it’s a diamond, you have an important decision to make. Are you going for a conventional, mined diamond? Or will you put a twist on tradition and select the alternative, a lab-grown diamond?

Natural diamonds – clean origin, clean ethics with Canadamark Canadian diamonds.

Natural diamonds come from very deep undergound. They are actually formed in the mantle of the Earth. Diamonds are a product of heat, time and pressure. Unquestionably it takes a long journey before a diamond finds its new owner – your loved one.

Hard-working miners extract it from the ground. You might think that most of the diamonds originate from Africa, but Canada also possesses territories rich in this precious stone. In just about 5 years Canada has doubled the amount of extracted carats of diamonds and reached 23 million carats in 2018. (source: British Geological Survey, World mineral Production 2014-18). Our mines are situated in the north-west of the country and are guaranteed to be conflict-free. Diamonds are tracked and protected with the trademark “Canadamark”. I believe it’s a very important aspect to mention, as discussion revolves very often around the environmental and humanitarian toll of the extraction. Since consumers are after ethical, transparent jewellery, I suggest my clients choose “Canadamark” which will eliminate any concern. Canadamark diamonds offer the best proof of Canadian origin.

Lab-grown diamonds

With a lab-grown diamond, you instantly buy a non-conflict diamond. You are buying a diamond which was made in a laboratory. It is chemically and structurally identical to the ones which are mined from the earth. With the naked eye you hardly see any difference as it takes very specialized laboratory equipment to detect that. Many consumers are also drawn to this version of diamond due to its lower price.

Images of natural and mined diamonds. Photo by GIA
A natural-faceted and a man-made faceted diamond. Photo by GIA

Other gemstones

Besides diamond you might consider other gemstones as well. Moissanite is a man-made material which looks like diamond and even though it is not quite as hard, it is still very suitable for everyday wear. Sapphire is an extremely popular gem and is among the hardest natural non-diamond gems. Rubies are also very precious stones and popular for engagement rings. Just like sapphire they can be a perfect diamond substitute thanks to their hardness. Sapphires and rubies are the same mineral: corundum. Sapphires come in all colours but red. Red is called ”ruby”.

4th step: Creating the computer-generated model of your custom engagement ring

After a gemstone is selected, we start creating a computer-generated model or a sketch that demonstrates what the design would look like. With the help of our state-of-the-art computer software, we produce a picture of the ring. The program will render it perfectly, from all angles. In some cases we might consider making a sketch if within the confines of the software a picture cannot be produced.

5th step: Preparing the 3D Model of your custom engagement ring

Once you approve the computer-generated model, the next step of the process is to create a 3D model of your ring. Before this step, it is advised to meet personally to check the ring size carefully.

This is essential as the 3D model is of the actual size of the ring. Within 1 or 2 weeks the model is ready and you will have the opportunity to try it on and get a sense of it. There are no stones in the model, they are not built in yet.

At this point it is possible to make tweaks to the design. This is where we differ from many online design services. Being able to speak directly with your ring designer is a huge asset.

Custom Bypass Solitaire Engagement Ring

6th step: Making of your custom engagement ring

Two weeks after seeing the model, we arrive at the best part in the process. You hold the actual engagement ring in your hand which has been personalized and designed to your specifications.

The project of making a custom engagement ring takes about 4 weeks to complete and at the end you have a piece of jewellery which is 100% unique.

Proposing means you embark on a new and exciting chapter of your lives together. Popping the question is a big undertaking, but you can give a memorable experience to your partner with a ring design that has more meaning in your journey together. A custom engagement ring can be a special part of your story.

Generic is not relevant anymore. We have an underlying desire for a unique and targeted experience.

Proposing to your loved one is a special moment that both of you will remember forever. You make a lifelong commitment to each other. I’m sure you would agree that such an exceptional occasion is also worth providing a tailor-made experience. Make your loved one feel special by giving a custom engagement ring. Add your own touch to this precious piece of jewellery and let it reflect the uniqueness of your relationship and love.

This 6-step guide should take you through the smooth process of creating the perfect custom engagement ring that your partner will gladly wear every day for the rest of their life.

Types Of Jewellery Appraisals

The value of an item of jewellery depends on the purpose of the evaluation. It’s the same as your car. If you sell it, the value is most likely lower than the cost of replacing it new. The first value would be the Fair Market Value and the second would be the Replacement Value.

Here Are Two Popular Types Of Jewellery Appraisals:

Insurance Appraisals

An insurance appraisal is a complete description of an item of jewellery, supporting an estimate of the value, to be used as the basis for establishing the coverage and cost of an insurance policy. It establishes the upper limit of insurance coverage for an item of jewellery and is based on that item’s most common source for replacement. This is called the replacement value. For example, if an item is an antique cameo brooch, the value of that item will be established by researching the costs of similar items at auction, antique stores, or estate sales, rather than a retail jewellery store. This is because a retail jewellery store would not be the most common source for an antique cameo brooch.

When an item is sold by brand name and is clearly identified by way of markings, the appraisal value is the cost to replace the item with the same brand. If the branded item is no longer available, a comparable value will be used.

Important

Check with your insurance company. Without a jewellery appraisal, most home policies may offer a minimal level of insurance coverage in the event of theft. It is normally required that you to submit a jewellery appraisal to receive proper and full coverage for all risks. Without the appraisal, you may be subject to a limit of coverage and often have to pay a deductible in the event of a claim. Deductibles are normally between $500 and $1000. Your broker or agent would be able to help answer questions regarding your coverage and make good suggestions to help you insure your jewellery in the best possible way.

Insurance premiums are expensive before a loss and really inexpensive after one.

Estate Appraisals For Probate

When a person passes away, their property (including jewellery) is described and evaluated for probate. In the case of assets like jewellery, the Fair Market Value, rather than the Replacement Value is used. This is the value that the item would sell for in an open market. Even if the jewellery is not for sale, the Ontario government requires an estimated value of the jewellery as though it was sold one minute before the time of death. It is advised that you have a professional jewellery appraiser prepare the estimated value because the government has the right to question any estimate for several years after the time of death. As the Executor of the will, you are responsible for proving the value of the jewellery and other assets were honest and legitimate.

Fair Market Value Definition

The price that a given property or asset would fetch in the marketplace, subject to the following conditions:

  1. The buyer and seller have reasonable knowledge about the item for sale; they are behaving in their own best interests and are free of undue pressure to trade.
  2. A reasonable time period is given for the transaction to be completed. Given these conditions, an asset’s fair market value should represent an accurate valuation or assessment of its worth.

Comparisons are made to estate auctions, antique store selling prices, and the second-hand market of eBay and other online sources. These are places where you would find similar items for sale. The Fair Market Value of an article of jewellery is often a small portion of the cost to replace it with a comparable item in new condition. Exceptions are very collectable or rare items in high demand.