Engagements & Wedding Guide
Over 60 years experience
Welcome to the Ernest Jones Engagement & Weddings Guide. With over 60 years' experience of selling engagement and wedding jewellery and gifts, we make it our business to help you have the best wedding day possible.
Wide range of jewellery and prices
We offer a wide range of products to make your wedding day perfect. With diamonds and rings across a wide range of budgets and styles and also featuring leading brand names such as Leo® Diamond and Le Vian®, we offer the best choice for your wedding jewellery.
Just ask us
Our customer service and store staff are trained so that you are sure to find exactly what you are looking for. If you can't find exactly the right ring for you, you could always use our design service to design your own ring.
Only at Ernest Jones
We hope that you enjoy our guide and we are sure that you will find everything that you need for the perfect wedding.Back to top
Introduction to engagement rings
When the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I gave Mary of Burgundy a gold ring set with a diamond as a token of love, the tradition of the engagement ring was born. This romantic tradition has continued to the modern day and is now definitely one of the most important purchases that you will ever make.
An engagement ring is the first major step on the road to marriage. Worn on the fourth finger of the left hand, which is said to contain the vena armoris (vein of love), an engagement ring is traditionally a gold ring set with a diamond. However, you can give any type of ring as an engagement ring, it is the sentiment that counts.
Traditionally purchased in secret by the man for the woman, choosing the right ring is a major decision. To help with this decision it is important to consider the 4C's. The 4C's are Carat, Cut, Colour and Clarity. The only other consideration you have to have is the fifth C, Cost. Looking at the four C's and deciding which are the most important to you, whether it is size, sparkle or colour, will help you to find the best ring and diamond for your budget.
White gold, yellow gold and platinum
Gold is the traditional precious metal for engagement rings, however white gold and platinum have become increasingly popular in the last 50 years and continue to be fashionable. It is best to consider what metal you will be using for your wedding rings and also which suits you best. For more information about precious metals, take a look at the Ernest Jones Metal Buyer's Guide.
How much to spend
Diamond rings of very high quality are available across a wide range of prices and a great ring doesn't have to cost the Earth. Depending on who you ask you will hear of different traditions about how much to spend on your engagement ring. These can be anything from one months pay up to at least three months pay. However, the best advice is that you should spend the amount you can afford. One way to help with the cost of your engagement ring is to take advantage of payment options.
No matter how much you decide to spend, brand name diamond jewellery offers quality and reassurance. Some of the finest diamond engagement rings come from leading brands such as Leo® Diamond. These diamonds feature a unique Leo® Diamond cut for an unmatched return of light giving you one of the most dazzling diamonds available.
You can also buy Bridal Sets which feature wedding rings and engagement rings that have been made to fit perfectly together, to complement each other in style, diamond cut and design.
Design your own rings
Alternatively you could design your own engagement ring using a design service such as Atelier, exclusive to Ernest Jones. Atelier allows you to design your own ring with advice from jewellers and designers so that you get the diamond, setting, metal and design that you want.
Ernest Jones Diamond Buyer's Guide
For more information on choosing your engagement ring, diamonds and the history of engagements visit the Ernest Jones Diamond Buyer's Guide.View engagement rings here > Back to top
Introduction to wedding rings
A wedding ring is one of the most easily recognisable and potent symbols of love in the western world and common to many cultures. Usually worn on the fourth finger of the left hand, the wedding ring is a symbol of your eternal love.
Wedding ring history
Wedding rings have been worn since at least the Roman times to symbolise the union of marriage. The most traditional is the simple gold wedding band, with no pattern or design. More recently engraved wedding rings and wedding rings set with precious stones and even diamonds have become more popular and fashionable.
In modern times, bridal rings have gained popularity among brides who do not want to wear a traditional wedding and engagement ring, but prefer stand alone diamond designs to symbolise their eternal love.
Depending on your culture, religion or the practise of your family, there are many different traditions for wedding rings. The wedding ring in Western culture is most commonly worn on the fourth finger of the left hand. Alternatives include wearing the ring on the right hand in some cultures and in parts of India, Hindu brides wear a toe ring.
Wedding ring weights
A wedding ring is usually a simple band of gold, but even this simple band comes in a variety of styles and shapes. Usually men wear heavier rings whilst women wear lighter, thinner rings. These rings will have names such as Heavy Weight, Extra Heavy Weight and Light Weight.
Wedding rings shapes
Wedding rings are also available in different shapes. When you are choosing your ring you have to try them on, preferably with your engagement ring and see which shapes fit you the best and is the most comfortable. Match the shape to your engagement ring and try it for comfort.
Wedding ring materials
One of the most important choices to make is the material used in your wedding ring. The traditional choice is gold, but metals such as platinum, palladium and titanium are currently very fashionable. Different metals offer different benefits beyond fashion. However, do not mix metals as some are harder than others, so they may damage each other.
Personalising your rings
One way to make your wedding rings even more special is to have your details and wedding dates engraved inside the band.
How much to spend
There are no rules about how much to spend on your wedding ring. The price will be dictated by the carat, metal and size of your ring. Take your time and make sure that you choose a ring that suits you and your wallet. You could also take advantage of our finance options to help to pay for your ring.See our wide selection of wedding rings > Back to top
Perfect jewellery for a perfect day
When choosing jewellery for yourself and your bridesmaids it is best to match it to your look for the day. Ensure that your wedding jewellery is coordinated and that it complements your dress and your bridesmaids' dresses.
Things to remember when choosing wedding jewellery:
- Consider how the jewellery works with your wedding dress
- Consider how the jewellery works with your bridesmaids dresses
- When you are choosing earrings, think of how you will be wearing your hair
- Do you want to match your wedding jewellery to your wedding and engagement rings?
Our experts can help
At Ernest Jones you can choose from a wide range of necklaces, bangles, earrings and bracelets set with diamonds or pearls to make your look complete. If you have trouble deciding which jewellery best suits your wedding look, our staff are always happy to help you style your wedding. Why not bring in a look book and we will give you the best advice available on the high street.Back to top
Don't forget to get gifts for your guests. When you plan a wedding, it is amazing how many people help you and contribute to your big day. It is important to make sure that you thank them properly and in style. Sometimes flowers and a card are simply not enough, so why not give them a gift that they can treasure?
Gifts for your bridesmaids
A wedding gift for your Bridesmaid could be a pendant, earrings a stylish photo frame, trinket box or anything you want. Whatever you decide it will be a gift from the heart. You can make your gift even more memorable by engraving it and adding a little personal touch.
Things to remember when choosing wedding gifts:
- Give the bridesmaids something memorable like jewellery or a photo frame
- Give the men something that they will treasure as a keepsake of the big day, such as a watch or cufflinks
- Get your gift engraved with a personal message of thanks and gratitude and the date
Gifts for your groomsmen
Your best man, ushers and groomsmen have all given everything to make your wedding the best day of your life, so why not reward them with a stylish pair of cufflinks, a pen or even a watch. Add a truly personal touch to your gift by having it engraved with a message from the heart and make your wedding gift truly unforgettable.
Saying thank you is important and will put an elegant finishing touch to your celebrations. Give your loved ones and all those who helped bring your whole day together something to remember you by with a wedding gift from Ernest Jones.Saying thank you is important and will put an elegant finishing touch to your celebrations. Give your loved ones and all those who helped bring your whole day together something to remember you by with a wedding gift from Ernest Jones.Back to top
How much should I spend on an engagement ring?
Traditions suggest that you should spend from one to up to three months pay on an engagement ring. However, we suggest that you spend what you can sensibly afford and if you shop around, you will be surprised at what you can get for your money.
How much should I spend on a wedding ring?
There are no traditions about how much you could or should spend on a wedding ring, however the rules are the same as above; spend what you can sensibly afford.
How do you find out her ring size?
The easiest way is to take her to a jeweller and ask them to tell you, however this might spoil the surprise. If you want to be more discreet, you could download a ring size chart and borrow one of her rings, preferably one she wears on the fourth finger of her hand and compare it to the ring sizer. Alternatively you could take the borrowed ring to a jeweller to be measured. Whatever you do, remember to take the ring back before she notices that it is missing.
How do you pick the right ring for her?
Getting the right engagement ring is very important and very nerve wracking. Make sure that you do your homework and look at her jewellery to see what she likes. Look at which metals she favours, white gold, yellow gold or platinum and try to notice what styles and stones she has. Lots of diamonds or lots of pearls? Is it big and colourful, or small and minimalist? Her jewellery collection will hold a lot of secrets that will help you to develop a picture of which ring she might like. If her taste is big and bold, then perhaps a dazzling cluster ring. If her taste is more refined a high carat solitaire will be the right choice.
What if the ring doesn't fit?
Don't worry. If you bought it from Ernest Jones we will exchange or refund it within 30 days.
Can I design my own ring?
Yes, of course. Using our Atelier service, available in store, you can design your own unique engagement and wedding rings to your own specifications with the help of our experienced jewellery designers.
Where can I buy a certificated diamond?
At Ernest Jones we have a great collection of certificated diamonds including the world famous Leo® Diamond.
What if my girlfriend doesn't like the ring I bought?
Don't worry. If you bought it from Ernest Jones we will exchange or refund it within 30 days.
What is the difference between white and yellow gold?
Yellow gold and white gold both contain gold. The difference between the two metals is the other alloys that are used with the gold. White gold uses more white metals as alloys. The white metals used in white gold produces the white colour of white gold.
How do you clean diamond jewellery?
At Ernest Jones we stock a wide range of jewellery cleaning products to help you to keep your precious jewellery as good as new.
Can I buy an engagement ring for him and when can I propose to him?
In recent years the concept of a mengagement ring has become more and more popular and more women.Back to top