(Closed) Is it shallow to want a quality ring for engagement?

posted 4 years ago in Engagement
Post # 16
Member
171 posts
Blushing bee

For below 1000 you can find a new 18k gold or platinum ring. In fact, I am now considering a platinum posy ring for 400 that is from a reputable jeweler.

Quality, as in durability, is important, since the ring supposed to last a lifetime. But quality can come at quite low price points. If you choose a simple ring made with quality material, such as 18k gold or platinum, but without a stone, few hundreds will be enough and it still will be a quality ring that you can pass to next generations. 

Stones and fancy designs as well as brand names is what makes ring expensive. And those are in my opinion a matter of “wants” rather than “needs”. 

But from your updates your problem is different than “am I a gold digger?”, it sounds more like “why my boyfriend spends fortune on himself and gives no thought or resources to my ring”. It seems you think he can afford more but doesn’t want to spend that much. Proving him that your wants are not expensive or that anything below the price point you set cannot be considered “quality” will not solve your problem. 

You need much deeper conversation with him about finances in general. 

 ETA: it’s not materialistic or shallow of you to want something specific, just don’t put up “quality” argument to defend your wants as it is easy to take apart plus makes you defensive right at the start. 

 

Post # 17
Member
1883 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2019

I agree with everyone – I would focus less on the cost, and more on what you actually get. This is why I’m a total advocate for being open and honest with your SO. It takes the magic out of it, but really, this is a ring you will be wearing for hopefully the rest of your life. You need to be happy with it. You should have a say in what it look like. Getting engaged is a huge decision, and one you can’t just rely on him to take ownership of – you should be part of that discussion too.

So yeah, chat to him. Show him pics of what you’re after, or maybe tell him you want x metal and x stone. Steer him in the right direction.

Men are usually pretty hopeless and often need direction :P. 

Post # 18
Member
2009 posts
Buzzing bee

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mindzoo :  I don’t think that wanting something nice (let’s just trash the word “quality” because it seems like some of the bees are picking that term apart for the sake of simply proving materialism) if you’ll be expected to wear it for the rest of your life.

 

I think it’s reasonable to expect what you know for certian your SO can afford. If you’re to the point of considering engagement/marriage, you should have a firm grasp on each other’s finances. If you want something outside of his/her price range, offering to help pay for it seems like a great compromise! 

 

But to answer in short, no. I do not think expecting a $2500 ring is overly materialistic. I think that’s sort of on the lower end of the price expectation spectrum, depending on where you live 😊 

 

ETA: I also don’t think it makes a woman a terrible person for expecting a certain sized stone, either. Shoot me 🤷🏽‍♀️

Post # 19
Member
2762 posts
Sugar bee

I think it’s fine to want a certain type of ring, but also fine for the ring buyer to have their own priorities. When different feelings about money and gift giving arise, some compromise is in order. I also think it’s very important that you not equate the price tag of a ring or even the amount of thought that goes into it with perceived worth of the recipient — and since I saw your last post about your low self esteem I do wonder whether that’s what this post is really about. 

While the thought/effort/money poured into a ring can symbolize someone’s commitment and love, those aren’t the only ways to show those things. And for some gifting just isn’t their love language, so it’s more of an obligation than a gesture of love. It also really depends on attitudes about money and societal norms in one’s culture and peer group – for some spending 20k on a ring is no big deal so a more expensive ring doesn’t necessarily mean more love/effort/thought went into it. 

In my case, my ring is an heirloom from my side of the family, so my fiance didn’t really do much other than agree he was fine with using it. So, by the standard of “he could have afforded to spend more”/”he could have put more effort into the ring” — well, my guy spent 0. I don’t think that means he loves me any less than if he’d bought me a 20k ring. Maybe I am especially comfortable with it because he made it clear he couldn’t wait to marry me and I never doubted his feelings or felt he needed to prove something with expensive jewelry.

FWIW, when we were debating whether to use the heirloom or go with a new ring and talked budget, he said the most he felt comfortable spending on a new ring was $1500 – and he had a very healthy amount in savings, no debt, good retirement plan, steady job, etc. so he could have certainly afforded more – it was just hard for him to fathom spending more than that on a piece of jewelry and he believes more in spending money on experiences than things. I respected that, and I decided I’d rather spend 0 and use a beautiful family diamond that was sitting in my jewelry box already. But there were lots of rings in the 1500 and under range I loved too and I didn’t consider that “cheap.” 

PS If you’re asking this about your specific relationship rather than as a hypothetical, I hope you’ll re-read all the advice given to you in prior threads about your SO. 

Post # 20
Member
9756 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

Cost doesn’t always equal quality. If you want quality, you can still get that for less than $2500 if you do your homework. 

It would be materialistic to say “I only want a ring that costs X amount of dollars.” To me that says it’s about the amount spent, not what you’re actually getting. 

Post # 21
Member
1691 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2021 - Glacier National Park-Montana

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with hoping for a beautiful or expensive engagement ring.  But There’s something beautiful in every budget.  As long are your dreams aren’t far out of his budget!  

A ring is just a thing, but the thought he puts into choosing it, the effort he went to saving for it and how well he listened to your preferences or how well he guessed them all matter.  Making a sizable investment in an engagement ring says I planned ahead and saved, I’m Spending money on something you’ll wear forever that I hope you’ll love.  I feel secure making this big purchase because I believe and want us to be forever.

If he’s buying himself a sports car  or  expensive TVs etc. (insert your favorite man hobby**) and he chooses to spend a nominal amount on an engagement ring.  That wouldn’t make me feel good at all.  

Of course some women want understated rings!  But some women want flash and that is just as okay in my opinion.  If we had to buy men “engagement cars”….how much would I be willing to spend?  I think he’d rightly be disappointed if I could have afforded a corvette and I got him a 20 year old Camry.   But if I saved up for a year to buy that Camry it’s different than if I make millions and bought the corvette. It’s all relative to the situation.  

 

Post # 22
Member
13780 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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browneyedgirl24 :  With that heads up I would suggest that OP may be setting the bar for SOs too low rather than setting it too high for jewelry. 

OP, it’s really not supposed to be this worrisome or complicated. Any doubt should be enough for you to strongly consider putting the brakes on an engagement. 

Post # 24
Member
490 posts
Helper bee

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mindzoo :  maybe he’s now scared to drop money on people if it didn’t go well the first time? But honestly this sounds like it may be anxiety talking – first talk to him about engagement and rings and finances and figure out what the actual budget and plan is. Pick out a few and show him the types of rings, metals, etc you like. Both of you should do some research on costs and ring types so you get a good understanding of what’s out there and how much different settings and styles cost. From there, if there’s something particular you want (an upgrade for example or a 18K band instead of 14K), then offer to pitch in for the extra.

There are also other ways to save money, like buying online or secondhand instead of a traditional jewelry store. My ring was bought online and saved literally thousands of dollars and was a custom design that would have costed way more in stores. Also, wait for sales and DO negotiate at the counter. Some stores have straight 25% off discount during holidays and many negotiate if you know how to ask – that’s a lot of money saved when you’re talking a $2,500 purchase!

Post # 25
Member
1400 posts
Bumble bee

“What I cannot sympathize w/is if the guy spends money on himself (games, cars, trips etc) then drops a cheapie ring on his girl.”

See, I have a problem with this statement if you’re not also gifting the guy a nice expensive engagement gift of some form. You’re expecting him to spend 2500 on a gift for you and he doesn’t get a gift?

Personally I don’t think the reciever of the gift really has a say in the budget. Style, sure. But the budget is up to the person spending the money. And if he just doesn’t find fancy jewelry a great investment and would prefer to spend under 1000, then that’s his choice. You can decide that’s a deal breaker for you. But if you’re not spending an equivalent amount on him, then maybe you can’t judge on him cheapening out.

And as a sidenote, silver is a pretty durable and long lasting metal. Plenty of surviving antique silver rings out there. And newer alloys of silver (like argentium) are more durable than traditional sterling silver which itself has the potential to last a lifetime (and you can find many examples of vintage sterling rings).

Post # 26
Member
490 posts
Helper bee

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bumblebug :  I thought women usually buy both the bands later to “make up” the cost? At least, I plan to do that and also purchase a nice wedding present to return the favor, so to speak. It also depends on your earning differences – my Fiance earns more than me, so him spending $1000 ring for me would translate to a $700 ring for my salary. 

Post # 27
Member
1400 posts
Bumble bee

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glutton :  I don’t think there’s a tradition for the bands. I’ve seen so many different things happen. But with engagement rings there’s a huge expectation that the man buy one for the woman. And spend enough.

In your case, I really have no issue because it seems like you’re both trying to make eachother happy. And that’s what a good relationship should be all about. But my point was really in regards to cases where the woman expects the man to not cheapen out on her and get her a “nice” enough ring because she has decided that he can afford it and does not herself seem to be planning on gifting him a substantial gift.

And obviously, salary differences should be taken into account and it’s not a dollar for dollar transaction. But that wouldn’t change my impression of judging a guy for not spending enough when you (the hypothetical you) are not planning to get him anything.

Post # 28
Member
7803 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

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bumblebug :  You’re expecting him to spend 2500 on a gift for you and he doesn’t get a gift?

yaaass. I’m all for someone liking a style or wanting a certain size. But the recipient should not be the one deciding the budget. That’s why I always advocate for women on here to buy their own upgrade if they want a larger or more expensive ring. It’s pretty entitled to expect your SO to drop cash on you that you aren’t willing to reciprocate or spend yourself.

Post # 29
Member
1400 posts
Bumble bee

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jellybellynelly :  My fiance and I picked our own rings and got them for eachother. I was extremely bummed when he insisted that the ring he wanted was the one that was about a third of the cost of mine. So I bought his suit for him and told him to splurge on the nicest suit he liked (at least he’ll get a second use out of it). And then he chose one that still didn’t bring him up to my ring cost… I just can’t get this man to spend my money 🙂

Post # 30
Member
7926 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 1997

The only person who has to agree with your ring preferences (cost or otherwise) is your Fiance, and it sounds like that isn’t the case. If he doesn’t want to spend that much (or propose at all), hundreds of posts here saying that $2500 is reasonable won’t change his mind. The only opinions that matter are yours and his, and it sounds like you two aren’t anywhere close to the same page yet.

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