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Choosing the engagement ring - Collaborative vs surprise

9th October 2019

by Kundan

Engagement Ring - Collaborative Vs Surprise

Getting ready to pop the question? If you are ready to start searching for their dream engagement ring, then there are a few options out there that you may want to consider. Tradition says that the ring should be a surprise (along with the proposal itself) but more and more couples opt to break tradition by collaborating when choosing a design. 

So the question is whether to keep the entire proposal a surprise, collaborate on the whole process together, or to meet in the middle and keep it partially a surprise. Whichever option you choose could depend largely on your loved one’s preferences and personality. Chances are, if they are a romantic at heart, they are secretly hoping for a complete surprise. However, if they are more of a realist or tend to prefer being consulted over an item of such significance, then it is more likely they will prefer a collaborative approach. 

We’ve weighed up the pros and cons for every scenario so you can find the right solution for you.  

Engagement Rings - Full Surprise

The full surprise

If your loved one is an utter romantic at heart or you simply wish to keep the whole proposal secret, then this is the perfect option for you. That said, there is a lot of pressure involved when searching for the ideal ring, it is after all certain to become one of their most prized possessions and is designed to be worn every day. If you can handle the responsibility and level of trust involved with finding the perfect ring, then this is a great option. Plus it is a wonderful way to display how well you know your loved one’s personal taste and the element of surprise is certain to sweep them off their feet! 

If you are keen to get the engagement ring right but still keep it a surprise there are a few great ways to do this. Pick up on any hints your significant other may drop, perhaps they have shared some designs using our drop a hint feature or shown a key interest in certain styles when walking past a jewellery shop - whatever it may be, just keep note. Another great tip is to enlist the help of others, such as friends or family members, who may be able to find out what your loved one’s dream ring would be. Check out our engagement ring buying guide for some top tips if you are beginning your search from scratch.

Engagement Ring - Collaborative Approach

The collaborative approach 

Collaborating when choosing the ring is the perfect choice for couples who have decided on marriage together or for the realists who prefer to be consulted on important topics before making any big decisions. Okay, so it may not have the element of surprise but at least you can guarantee that special someone will receive their dream design without the added pressure. You can also take the guesswork out of finding their ring size, meaning that your significant other can wear the ring straight away without the hassle of getting it resized. Plus, as your loved one is picking out their ring then you know you are pretty much guaranteed a yes!

Engagement Ring - Partial Surprise

Meet in the middle - partial surprise

A partial surprise is a great choice as it almost guarantees you success for both a surprise proposal and with finding their dream ring. Okay, so it will be obvious that you are going to ask for their hand in marriage, but your significant other will not know when or how you are going to pop the question and they won’t have seen the exact ring beforehand. This is the perfect option for couples who have discussed marriage beforehand but also enjoy the element of surprise. 

There are plenty of ways to execute this option. You could ask your partner to go ring “shopping” with you and allow them to pick out styles, metals and stones that they like. This way you can go shopping for the ring alone with an idea in mind of their dream design without them seeing the final piece. You could ask them questions ahead of time, if you prefer, or see if they can put together a Pinterest board of their favourite styles. Another great option is to initially propose with a placeholder or sample ring and allow your loved one to choose their own ring once they have said yes.

Top tips for a successful proposal 

Make sure the ring fits

Finding the correct ring size is something that always baffles. It can be tricky, but it is an important element of the proposal. If you are collaborating then this part is fairly simple as you can use our ring sizer or get measured in store, however, if you wish to keep it a surprise then you may need to guess a little. Check out our ring size guide for top tips on how to find their size and keep it a secret. 

Engagement Ring Size

Get them to drop a hint

Whether you ask for a Pinterest board, seek advice from friends and family, or simply ask them to use our drop a hint feature on our website, there are many ways to ensure you propose with their dream ring. You can choose to keep it subtle, if you are planning a surprise proposal, or be more explicit if you are opting for a collaborative approach. 


Tailor the design to their taste

Perhaps your loved one has a very specific style, maybe they noticed their dream engagement ring in a shop window but they want it in rose gold rather than platinum. We offer a solution to all of these problems, as all of our designs can be customised to suit your significant other’s personal taste. Choose from a range of designs, precious metals and diamond specifications, to create an engagement ring that they will hold dear to their heart.


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