(Closed) Random Musings: Choosing a ring together, can it still be a surprise?

posted 4 years ago in Proposals
Post # 2
70 posts
Worker bee


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averria :  My fiance really wanted it to be a surprise, but also wanted to absolutely make sure I got the ring I wanted. I went to the jeweler alone and designed the setting and took my ring size. That was the last time I was a part of the ring/proposal process. My fiance went in later and chose the center diamond and again later to pick it up. I didn’t know when these things were happening as the jeweler was only in contact with my fiance. I basically knew it was coming eventually, but I didn’t know when. I didn’t know how long the ring would take or how long he’d wait to propose once he had it. When he proposed it was in my apartment and I was truly surprised because I was in my pajamas about to get ready to go to dinner. I had also not seen the ring fully complete so that was a surprise as well.

Post # 3
135 posts
Blushing bee

I personally did and think you definitely can! I did not know what I wanted and couldn’t tell what style I liked until I put a few on my finger. I went with my Fiance and tried on a few rings and found one I liked. My Fiance wasn’t happy with the diamond on the band I liked so we asked it to be switched for another. I didn’t see the ring puttogether (ie. dimaond we picked and band) until he proposed! And yes while I knew a proposal was coming it was still a surprise to me how andwhen hedid it! Some people may thnik differently but I was happy knowing I was going to get a ring I loved to wear for the rest of my life! 😀

Post # 5
9635 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

DH used my grandmother’s diamond and traded in the setting toward a setting i would want.  i gave him pictures of what i wanted the ring to look like and he had his friend’s father, a jewelry designer make the ring.

i knew my proposal date was one of 2 weekends when DH said the ring is taking longer to make.  the jeweler’s wife passed away.  do you want me to propose without a ring or wait.  i said propose without a ring.

when the proposal didn’t happen the first weekend, i knew it would be the next weekend.


my proposal was still AMAZING!!!!

i got home from the gym with an enveloped taped to the door.  it was a poem with a clue to the next location.  i went to 5 locations, each with a poem/clue to the next location.  the final location was the location of our first date.  it was a tree house in the sculpture garden of an art museum.  DH was waiting in the tree house on one knee.  his friend was talking pictures of me walking from my car to the tree house.  DH did his thing privately.  then we reenacted the moments so his friend could take more pictures.


i don’t think i could have asked for a better proposal even though i knew everything but the HOW.

Post # 6
650 posts
Busy bee

A TRUE suprise proposal sounds like the worst thing ever to me. I just don’t want the fact that someone wants to spend the rest of their life with me to come as a shock. 

I picked out my ring, and was super nit picky with the details. Spent about 3 months with the fiance looking at rings in person, before finally deciding on a stone and setting online, which took another 6 weeks to create. I told him once the ring arrived, I didn’t want to see it until the proposal.

I did ask him if it looked nice when he let slip that it was in the house, and he gushed that it was even more beautiful than he would have guessed. It took all my willpower not to search for the ring in the house, but since he wanted the actual proposal to be a surprise, I was determined not to ruin that element for him. He did let me know it would be coming in the next couple weeks after the ring arrived, so I had a general timeframe. 

It was about a month after we actually had the ring in hand that he proposed – although I knew it was generally coming in that timeframe, so had been keeping my nails nice just in case, I didn’t know any specifics of the proposal. 

I was actually REALLY suprised when it happened, just because I wasn’t expecting the time and circumstance (he planned a surprise overnight at a fancy hotel in our city and proposed there!). And seeing the ring that I’d spent so long planning in person took my breath away. 

So yes, you can absolutely have your cake and eat it too re: choosing your ring and STILL having a surprise proposal. 

I also found out that he was sneaking the ring out at night and taking pictures of it around the house, he liked it that much! Much like the bees here that sneak peeks of their rings haha. 

Post # 7
26 posts

As much as I would have liked to have him surprise me with a ring (or have it when he proposed), I’m quite happy with the way ours played out.  The ring was still a surprise.

We got engaged on August 21st.  He didn’t have a ring and he didn’t bend the knee (saying that with Game of Thrones in my head haha).  The next day after the eclipse proposal, we traveled to Blowing Rock North Carolina to go gem mining at Doc’s Rocks (it’s near Tweetsie Railroad park).  While we were there, we inquired about custom rings.

Some friends of mine just recently celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary and they ordered a ring from Doc’s Rocks and it was absolutely beautiful.  Fiance’ suggested seeing what they had to offer and go from there.

So we thumbed through the ring books and got an idea on pricing and what kind of stones we wanted in the ring.  Fiance’s reasoning for not having a ring was so that I could get what I wanted (how sweet).  When didn’t order anything while we were there but was given the link to browse through their online selection through Stuller and was asked that when we had a ring picked out to call back and they’d get it ordered.

I picked a ring, we got it customized the way we had wanted and paid for the ring.  Since it was custom, it would take 2-3 weeks to come in.  The company makes the band/actual ring part and they set the stones locally in Boone/Blowing Rock.

I didn’t look at the website or the picture of the ring with stones simulated in place on the picture that he sent us.  I didn’t want to look at it because I wanted it to be a surprise.

By the time we went and picked up the ring, the only people who had seen it were the people who handled the ring throughout its creation.  When Doc opened up the jewelry box for the first time I was completely stunned and in awe at it’s beauty.  I just can’t get over how pretty it is!!!

I am in love with my custom engagement ring and glad that we went the route that we did.

We also decided to wait until we had the ring before we told his parents or my family and made it “facebook official.”

The 2 outer stones are moissanite and the center is a diamond.  We chose the moissanite because of how they are made and it tying back to the eclipse.

Post # 8
418 posts
Helper bee

We picked the ring together and the proposal wasn’t a surprise.

It was still very emotional – he was still very nervous (even though we picked the ring together so of course I was going to say yes). I wasn’t surprised but it was still a big moment.

I think there can still be an element of surprise even if you pick the ring together. You can pick the ring together but he’ll decide when to purchase it/pick it up etc.


Post # 9
285 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2019

View original reply
averria :  Personally (and I may be biased) I think you can. I was worried about ruining my proposal because we keep talking about getting engaged and picked out a ring together etc. Long story short he bought the ring last week and even though I know exactly what it will look like I have no idea when it will arrive (ordered online) when he will give it to me or how he’ll actually propose. I am very picky and wasn’t sure what style I liked so I’m glad that even though I gave him some ideas he showed me what he picked out before buying; let me tell you he did an amazing job too, better than the one I had picked out actually.

To me I feel like it is still a surprise because besides that one part I don’t have any clue what’s going to next. I’m trying to wait patiently in case he doesn’t propose for a while but it’s so hard!  Everyone has their own opinions but like I said I think you can still have the surprise and make sure you get the ring you want. I could come home tonight to a house full of flowers and him on one knee (I wish lol). As long as you’re happy with whatever you decide that’s all that matters!

Post # 10
688 posts
Busy bee

My boyfriend proposed without a ring and then that next weekend we went shopping so I could pick out what I wanted. This is what I had asked him to do from the beginning. That I wanted a suprise proposal but that I wanted to pick out the piece of jewlery that would be sitting on my hand forever. He was totally fine with it and it was actually really fun going ring shopping with him the weekend after. 

Post # 11
1167 posts
Bumble bee

I chose my stone and gave him the inspiration for a setting.  He admitted that he probably would have purchased something that I didn’t like had I not shown him what I wanted.  Anyway, fasst forward to proposal day…I made the super last minute plans to go to this one restaurant that we had been planning to check out and he totally monopolized on the idea.  I haev no idea how he did it but he totally surprised me with a proposal, had them playing our song in the backgroud, and had a photographer on site to capture our special moment on film.  He also completely surprised me with the setting having a side halo! 

So, to answer your question, yes, it can still be very much a surprise!

Post # 12
74 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: January 2020

I think it can! I helped my boyfriend pick out the ring. Now I just have to wait:) being long distance makes it a touch harder for it to be a total surprise, because we only see each other every few months. So I know it’s going to happen in January at some point because I’m going to visit him then. BUT. I don’t know which day or how, and I’m super excited! It’s still going to be amazing even though I know the week it’s happening:) 

Post # 13
220 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

I picked out my ring.  My bf is super traditional and I wanted a color stone. He just couldn’t understanding my vision despite our mutual love for design.  We were both approaching levels of frustration previously unknown to man after 11 months of ring shopping.  I mean at some point we even had to take my 9 year old shopping with us because it was so time consuming.  I don’t know anything about the proposal other than he will be getting down on one knee and using my whole name sometime before the holidays.  The timing couldn’t be better as we are buying a house and I am very distracted with buying lamps and blinds, lol. 

Post # 14
38 posts
  • Wedding: August 2017

View original reply
averria :  Before we were engaged, I knew he was going to propose one day because we had been talking about marriage for a long time and he was just waiting for the right moment. He was one of those guys that wanted everything to be super romantic and a surprise so I didn’t get to choose the ring. However, I made it a point to wear rings so that he could see what kind of styles I liked and what my size was. I also told him straight up what I liked and made it clear that I did not want some super fancy giant ring or anything like that. In the end when he proposed it was a total surprise, it was awesome, and he got to give me a ring I had never seen before but it was exactly what I wanted. Unfortunately I lost it a month later… and then we went to pick out a new ring together. tongue-out

Post # 15
113 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

My fiance suprised me with a proposal and the ring he picked out 5 years ago. We did everything backwards, had a baby, bought a house, and now finally planning our dream wedding. When we went in to find wedding bands, we discovered my ring only had a 3 to 4 choices left for wedding bands. It was one designed for specific bands to fit with it. I did not like how any of them looked and both my fiance and the sales lady could tell I was not excited. She explained they could make a custom band for it so we looked at some options, but my fiance encouraged me to just try on some other engagement rings.

Long story short I found a gorgeous ring right away that he said he wanted me to have and that i looked like it was made for me. He said he had always wished he had looked at more rings instead of picking the one he did because he wasn’t crazy about it after seeing it on my hand. I loved that ring for the sentimental memories of it, but I was never in love with it.

The sales lady put a sizer on it and kept my old ring as we would be trading it in for the new one. Allowing me to think about it as I felt terribly guilty and sad to part with my original ring. When we left the store in the parking lot he proposed to me again with that ring and it honestly felt like the first time. I felt so flustered and emotional! Every time I look at my new ring I feel the same way I felt 5 years ago the first time. We decided to just think of it as my old ring being a “promise” ring. He is as excited about it as I am.

So short answer now! It will NOT take away from the excitement and it makes it that much more special to know you both chose that ring. It gives it so much more meaning! It will still be a suprise if you have no idea when he will propose, and better to be proposed by a ring you love than one you dont like so much.

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