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Forums › General › Off Topic :: Archives › Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed... :: Archived

Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...
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zinger565
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 2:44 pm    Post subject: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

Well, I figure since most of you are 30+ (at least according to the knee pad/jock strap thread anyways) you all would be decent group to ask/bounce ideas off of.

My girlfriend and I have been dating for 4 years and a little bit. We're both in collage and attend UW-La Crosse. Her birthday is in August and I was thinking about proposing to her for her birthday. Now it would be a few years before we would begin to plan, because we've both got a couple years before we finish our respective programs and graduate. The way our relationship is going right now, both our families and our friends believe that us getting married is inevitable, as to her and I. So, in reality, I personally feel like proposing wouldn't change the relationship, there would just be physical evidence to the commitment.

My questions to you guys are:

Is this a good idea/too soon? I know that it would be quite a while (4-5 years) before we'd even begin to plan a wedding.

Any suggestions on where to get the ring?

How much is too much to spend on it?

Any ideas on how to do it? I've always prided myself on being romantically creative...but after 4 years of Birthdays, Christmases, Anniversaries and Valentines I'm pretty much plum out of ideas.

Thanks in advanced!

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Crash1976
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

before i can offer anything, I'd ask you what if any religious persuations you two have and how strong those beliefs are.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 4:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

My brother was just talking to me about this, we talked to a bunch of people we know and this is what we heard back it might be helpful to you

Girls have told us not to us engagement dates on special occasions. They want their engagements to be separate, so a birthday might not be great.

Its not to soon if you believe it is the right decision. That being said really think hard about it. There is a lot of things that go into getting married.

Cost is totally up to you. People told me and I have read most people spend about 8-10% of their yearly salary on their rings. But also the cost doesnt matter. You could get her a ring out of a quarter machine and most girls would love it, if there is meaning behind the ring. Spend what you can but no reason to break the bank.

Im sure others will have different and more opinions. Also i feel it is a good gesture to ask her family/father before hand.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 4:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

Northup wrote:
You could get her a ring out of a quarter machine and most girls would love it, if there is meaning behind the ring. Spend what you can but no reason to break the bank.
I kinda disagree a little. Im sure no matter what you spend the girl is not going to say no because you didnt spend enough on the ring, but they all dream of an expensive ring and want to show their friends and family and you dont want to get her a ring that she would be embarassed to show people. Im not saying to have to get her an obnoxiously expensive ring but i have 3 sisters 2 engaged one recently married and all their rings varied between 7-12,000 so the price can vary greatly. I also rememebr hearing that you spend 3 months salary but if your still in college and dont have a career yet i doubt that applies.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 5:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

Many people do the extended engagement thing these days, including myself. I proposed in June last year and we are both college students also. As with your family, our family knew it would be a matter of time before we got married. We barely have a time frame for how soon the wedding will be. Weddings are expensive and when we finally do get married, it will be after I have a job that pays better than the one I have now. As long as you feel comfortable getting engaged, it is not to soon. Just be ready for people to ask you for a date. I tell everyone that we will be getting hitched when we graduate and that seems to satisfy them.

As far as where to get the ring, shop around is my advice. I got the hook ups from a friend who works in a jewelry, but if I hadn't, I would have looked around more. My friend told me that when you shop for rings, look at the three "c's": color, clarity and carret. I ended up spending about 3000 dollars.

Do not go cheap on the ring. All of the stuff that it represents is true, but women want to be able to show off the rocks that they wear. Get something that she will be proud to do that with.

I proposed on a mountain that is in view of our town. That way, when she sees the mountain, she remembers that day and thinks of me.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 5:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

Thanks for the advice everyone, I'll put it to good use.

Crash1976 wrote:
before i can offer anything, I'd ask you what if any religious persuations you two have and how strong those beliefs are.

we are both catholic, but neither of us are very strongly devoted to it right now.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 5:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

No problems with being engaged over a period of time. Just don't let it get stale.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 7:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

I only ask because that can play a big part in the impending numptuals. I would advise premarital counseling after you are engaged before you are married. sounds silly I know but if you REALLY want to know what your getting into and what you both expect it's the best way.

Regarding the ring...take her out looking at rings casually. Point out rings and guage her reactions, to cheap ones, to expensive ones etc. find out what styles of diamonds she likes and see what lights her up...pay attention.

Talk to her, talk about hypothetical scenarios for proposals, "feel " her out...not "up" for once. You don't always have to come up with dramatic panache to make a moment memorable when you know what she desires. Most of them want it to be a suprise more than anything and for the setting to be at least "classy"....and do yourself a favor and don't have a desert plate sent out with "will you marry me?" written in chocolate at your favorite restaurant. Have the cajones to take a frigg'n knee and do it like a man.

If you really take the time to know her and understand her, this will be no big deal. She'll love the ring and how you propose will be just as memorable.

I for one am not a fan of long engagements. I don't see the point even if you are in college...Just do it. I have known too many people who went ahead and did it while they were still in school and I think it actually makes school easier. 4-5 years is a long time to maintain an engagement with only the commitment of "I will" instead of "I do". If you catch my drift.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

In almost every way, I agree with Crash and Northup. The meaning behind the ring is more important than the cost, but it should cost. The engagement ring should be financially sacrificial, but not financially straining, as in you should have to cut down on paintball, but not skip your rent to buy it. And an engagement should have a definite end point. Maybe not a specific date, but more of a "when we graduate and start working"

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 10:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Proposal/Engagement Ring advice needed...

Is this a good idea/too soon? I know that it would be quite a while (4-5 years) before we'd even begin to plan a wedding.
-- I would propose maybe 1-2 years before the wedding date. Make sure family approves and you have a talk with her parents or father to get approval. 1-2 years will allow you to get your finances in order. Not sure if her family will bank roll the reception or not. My wife and I had to finance it all on our own so we had to save for a good 2 years. (Also would be nice to have some money on the side so you can furnish your house/apt so you can move in right away, etc)


Any suggestions on where to get the ring?
-- research online. Just like what Maloneoni said... know your 4 Cs. Cut, color, carat, clarity. I hear that hearts on fire diamonds are the perfectly cut, perfect in color and perfect in clarity. I think a 1 carat hearts on fire diamond would run around 6K+.

How much is too much to spend on it?
I think anything over 10K is extravagant but then again, if you're rolling in dough, it shouldn't matter. I think the De Beers created that 3 month salary rule. Had I spent 3 months worth, I'd be super broke. I think you would know best. Depending on your girl, if she's into materialistic things or not, you can kinda guage on how much you think you should spend.

Any ideas on how to do it? I've always prided myself on being romantically creative...but after 4 years of Birthdays, Christmases, Anniversaries and Valentines I'm pretty much plum out of ideas.
- I ended up taking my gf to Lake Tahoe for a weekend retreat. We took a Gondola up to the top of the mountain and I proposed on the summit over looking the Lake.

Hope that helps!
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