The diamond engagement ring tradition was born In 1477, when Archduke Maximilian of Austria proposed marriage to Mary of Burgundy by presenting her with one. But it wasn't until the late 19th century when diamond mines were discovered on the African continent that this precious stone became available to a wider market.
In response to the increasing demand, new designs and better techniques were developed resulting in what is today an enormous and extremely lucrative industry. But with so much choice available to us these days, how do you go about choosing the perfect engagement ring?
There are many things to think about before you part with your money. For instance, what shape should the diamond be? What type of ring setting are you looking for? Should the ring band be gold or platinum, or perhaps another metal?
Often the last thing we think about is the quality of the diamond. It is a common misconception that bigger is better, but size is not the only thing you should look for when choosing your diamond ring. To help consumers, a system known as the 4Cs has been developed which classifies the four most important characteristics of a diamond - cut, colour, clarity and carat.
Of course, all these decisions determine one factor that we all look for.the price. But you do not necessarily have to compromise on quality to save yourself money. You just need to know what to look for.
Within this website you will find explanations, guides and helpful tips on all aspects of engagement rings, from vintage engagement rings and antique engagement rings to designing your own engagement ring online. There is a reference section which explains some of the technical terms a jeweller might use, as well as a shopping directory which should set you well on your way to finding that perfect engagement ring.