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{GB} From Idea to Reality: Designing Your Own Customized Engagement Ring


For the past several years I have worked for a jewelry store as a member of their custom engagement ring design team. Since I’ve always had an interest in all things wedding, especially since I just recently became the Mrs, I’ve been inspired to educate soon-to-be brides and grooms about how easy and rewarding it can be to design your own engagement ring – or at least be the inspiration for the design.

Why Custom?

The idea of creating that one-of-a-kind engagement ring has evolved into an art form and has become expected by many brides. A recent study by showed that 2 out of 5 grooms are choosing to add personal elements to the engagement ring they purchase for their fiancé.

In custom design, options are almost limitless; you may choose custom design because you simply can’t find a pre-designed ring that is exactly what you’re looking for. Maybe, you like certain design elements from a couple different styles and you would like the best of both worlds. Or, maybe you would like to incorporate a piece of jewelry that has sentimental value – like your grandmothers engagement ring.

There are many reasons why someone might choose the custom process over pre-designed, my goal is to educate you about the process and let you know it’s an option.

Some questions often asked about the process?

How much does it cost? Believe it or not, in most cases a ring you design is more affordable than you may think. However you need to consider it an investment. And remember, you get what you pay for, so make sure you understand that designing your own ring is not a way to cut-costs or save money. One of my goals is to help a customer design a ring that is not only uniquely theirs but is also realistic for their budget.

What if I’m not creative? It’s ok if you’re not creative and you want to rely on the artist. It’s good to let the artist know your style. This can be accomplished by showing different pre-designed styles that you like or by just describing your general style – Example: I’m very simple and most of my other jewelry is white gold.

We have an idea in mind of what the ring should look like, now what?

Couples who want to design their own ring get inspiration in various ways. They may have looked at dozens of rings from lots of different designers for ideas. They may have liked the style of the band from one ring and the cut of a diamond from another ring. Whatever speaks to your individual taste and budget is all part of the process.

The Artist Sketch – The first part of the design process, once you’ve established your style, is an artist sketch. This is done by the jewelry artist (it’s good to work with a jeweler that has an artist on staff) – some artists will do the sketch by hand while others will use computer sketching programs. The goal is just to establish common ground between the artist’s vision and your vision.

The artist will ask you to show him/her pictures of rings that you like, and what you like about them.

Computer Rendering – Once you’re happy with the sketch, the jeweler will begin the next step in     the process – creating the ring in a computer drafting program. A computer image is rendered and sent to a machine that creates a prototype (plastic model) of the ring.


Plastic Model – This stage in the process brings the ring to life. A plastic model is created to the exact specifications of the ring leaving you with a life size, full detail model of your custom engagement ring.


{GB – Guest Blogger} Kate Stoll, Elizabeth Diamond Company.

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