As you can imagine, the engagement ring will arguably be the biggest part of any proposal- besides her saying “YES!” To help all my favorite bachelor clients blossom into confident grooms, I’ve put together a little cheat sheet.
Finding the perfect stone, band and setting can be tricky, especially when you’ll probably end up shopping alone—WeddingWire’s 2019 Wedding Report shows that only 20% of couples pick out a ring together. So, how can you find the right ring to symbolize your forever commitment?
Diamonds really are a girl’s best friend
Although any stone can be used for an engagement ring, WeddingWire’s 2019 Wedding Report shows that 71% of engagement rings have a diamond as the main stone. According to the American Gem Society, diamonds have signified union since the 1400’s when Maximilian of Austria proposed to Mary of Burgundy.
If you’re planning a surprise engagement, purchasing the right ring size will require a little finesse. To save yourself the headache and extra expense of resizing, simply steal a ring that you’ve seen your partner wearing on a ring finger and bring that to the jeweler to measure. Remember, some settings won’t accommodate a change in band size, so do whatever you have to do to make sure you get the size right.
Most diamond rings are one of ten unique shapes. Although most women prefer the traditional round shaped diamond, others may enjoy something more unusual. According to The Knot, different shapes can represent different personalities.
For example, an emerald cut tends to be more glamorous, the asscher cut suited to a vintage lover, and the marquise more romantic.
In addition to shape, consider the size of your partner’s hand. Pear, marquis, or oval shaped diamonds tend to suit long, slender fingers, whereas round or princess shaped diamonds are better for smaller hands.
Although shape is important, the cut will impact the quality of the diamond the most. Whereas shape is about the geometry of the stone, the cut is about the angles of the facets.
The 4 C’s: A Matter of Quality
The Gemological Institute of America created the 4Cs to assess diamond quality. Those 4Cs include:
Cut describes how well a diamond’s facets interact with the light. A well cut diamond will sparkle through the top of the stone. Of all the 4Cs, cut is the most complex to analyze since it’s based on 7 factors: brightness, fire, scintillation, weight ratio, polish, symmetry, and durability. Cut is also the most important “C”; even if the remaining 3 C’s are perfect, it won’t matter if the cut isn’t right.
Clarity describes the cloudiness of the stone. Naturally occurring internal “inclusions” and external “blemishes” can lower the value of the diamond. While no diamond is perfectly pure, the closer it comes, the higher its value.
As a general rule, try to avoid stones with inclusions on the top and in the middle. These areas have the biggest effect on the way the light passes through
Color is graded based on how little of it exists. The grading system ranges from D (colorless) to Z (light yellow); white color diamonds are the most popular (and tend to carry more value) but yellow diamonds and even black diamonds have grown in popularity.
Carat describes how much a diamond weighs. Diamond price increases with carat weight, because larger diamonds are more rare and more desirable. But, two diamonds of equal carat weight can have very different values (and prices) depending on the other 4C factors.
Settings and Metal
The setting, which describes how the diamond is placed on the ring, plays a big role in the look and feel of the ring. According to WeddingWire, the setting is the most important feature for women, whereas the quality of the stone is most important to men.
Just like the shape, there are a variety of different settings:
As you can imagine, different settings offer different benefits: The Halo is ideal for those who love a bit more sparkle, the Bezel setting offers a clean and modern look, and the Prong setting can really highlight the beauty of a main stone.
When it comes to the metal for the band, gold and platinum are generally the most popular choices. Platinum is the most expensive given its purity. It’s also a great hypoallergenic choice for those with sensitive skin. Gold offers more flexibility with colors, including white, yellow, rose and even green.
Get your certificates
Before purchasing, ask to see the grading certificate from a recognized gemological lab like the American Gem Society or the Gemological Institute of America; it’s the best way to ensure that you’re getting exactly what you’re paying for. And, please, please, please insure your ring as soon as you get home!
One of our Linx VIP guys responded to these tweets from @linxdating yesterday with some irreverent humor. I couldn’t help myself but put these comments up which are too great.
Tweet: Raising capital for startups in Silicon Valley as a female has its +/-. A female entrepreneur told me an investor said things no angel says
His comment: If angels talk to you, you should understand that you are already dead.
Tweet: People often let actions/behavior slide in the honeymoon stage. Deep into the relationship, it isn’t peaches and cream. Too late to reverse
His comment: Actually this is reversed. In the honeymoon stage, people are all peaches and cream. Once they are hooked, then they revert to being themselves.
Tweet: You start a company in Silicon Valley. You do a series A round, a series B, and then a series C … and then discover.. you’re still single.
His comment: By the time you are at a Series C round, you are more diluted than the house bourbon at a third rate bar
Tweet: Cheap in money, can be cheap in spirit when dating.
His comment: Really and that’s not obvious?
Tweet: Be less judgmental when picking and choosing people to date. If you seek perfection, you’re facing a tough road ahead.
His comment: Perfectionists don’t seek perfection, they seek those who are less so, because it allows them to point out all the short-comings of the less-than-perfect.
Tweet: You can’t seek love. It seeks you.
His comment: That’s called stalking and there are laws against such behavior
Tweet: People and culture are the spice of life
His comment: Marines in Afghanistan would probably quarrel with this statement
Tweet: The female career in Silicon Valley often eclipses the man’s in today’s world. If so, make him feel resourceful, useful, masculine, and loved.
His comment: Not exactly, but see Dennis Miller’s famous rant on what men really want from a woman, and only then will you understand why it is true that men and women arrive to earth from different planets.
Tweet: Ice breaker a client who flew in from overseas shared. She has walked up to men on the street & asks ‘Are you thirsty? Let’s have a drink’
His comment: For some reason, the phrase “stranger danger” suddenly comes to mind.
Monday and Tuesday of this week consisted of over 20 interviews of women who had submitted their info to meet our VIPs. These screenings give me a good read on any “standouts” who might make an exceptional match for any client of ours who has given me the authority to search everywhere for his match. Each week I get hundreds of submissions from women who are single, searching, and want to apply to meet a VIP. We hold regular castings to interview the ones we feel might have that “it” factor.
This week we met such impressive, candid, intelligent, and really “have their sh*t together” sort of women. Unfortunately we can’t represent everyone we meet but are currently in the process of selecting a few gems who are excellent matches for our current clients. The other lovely women, who graciously took time from their busy lives to meet Aimi and I, who are not a match for someone at this exact moment will remain in the Linx database. We encourage everyone who is not a match right now to check back in a couple of months. This is about “inventory” – supply and demand.
Today I’ve received a ton of “thank you” emails from the various candidates we met. They really made me feel good about what we accomplished and I would like to share some of the excerpts here:
You guys have great energy and I giggled all the way home:)
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to share and converse with you.
It was truly a pleasure! You ladies are very classy and truly know your stuff!
Sometimes dating can be difficult, stressful, and even depressing…I really appreciate your insight and perspective, thanks for sharing some of your tips.
Today I did a photo shoot with celebrity photographer Justin Coit who shot my Vanity Fair photo shoot back in August 2012. Justin is extremely talented and mostly does celebs in LA (including a lot of work with Rachel Zoe)…so getting him (with his assistant of choice named Pepe) to fly up to the Silicon Valley for the day is beyond lucky. Check out Justin’s blog entry about the Linx shoot for Vanity Fair…http://justincoit.com/vanity-fair
The story is for a European magazine called MYSELF which is a Condé Nast publication. A journalist named Anne Philippi who is a former writer for Rolling Stone and GQ flew up from LA a few weeks ago to spend after afternoon at Linx getting to know me and the unique cottage industry of matchmaking in Silicon Valley.
From the shoot today…this is my hubbie’s shot he got quickly in between Justin’s. Peplum dress Ted Baker and semi precious necklace from Bella Rosa in Los Gatos. Pepe next to me with light diffuser. Priceless.
My morning started bright and early with hair and makeup at my house. Today, my hair stylist, Jaye, added temporary extensions for the shoot which was fun….extra hair is heavy to “carry around” on your head all day! Makeup was in a similar elegant style to VF thanks to Bianca. I headed to downtown Palo Alto to Cafe Epi (had never been) on University where I did a quick change of clothes (according to what Justin suggested I wear for the first look) and followed his guidance. Thank goodness celebrity stylist, Hasti Khashfia, pulled together some great looks for me with less than 8 hours notice by me. Hasti styled me for VF and works regularly with Randi Zuckerberg.
We spent over two hours on University Avenue getting shots of me walking, fake talking on the mobile, fake typing on the computer, and sipping a nonfat cap (while drooling over the yummy colorful macaroons he bought for the shoot.) In the middle of some shots, his assistant Pepe squealed all of a sudden. He had been so quiet up until that point. I inquired what happened?! Get this…apparently some elderly man had walked by and pinched Pepe’s derriere while Pepe was holding a photography umbrella to diffuse the strong outdoor light! Who honestly knew SUCH scandalous behavior happened in the broad daylight in Palo Alto, on University Avenue, outside a cafe…from a man in his late 70’s no less! Wowza! I guess Pepe was flattered? 😉
Afterwards we followed my husband around town in our separate cars trying to locate some great views of the Silicon Valley for a second round of afternoon shots and we decided the Stanford Dish would be best. We all took an hour break and then reconvened there. Pepe met me at the base of the Dish and literally was my sherpa, carrying a garment bag and tote up the massive hill to the second location that Justin had found. What a gentleman! Picture me schlepping up the vertical climb in sneaks with my extensions and outfit on and Pepe hunched over with my crap.
Breathless, we arrived at the top of the peak and the guys found the optimal light and angle for a new series of gorgeous photos. It’s a little challenging, let me tell you, having to do a clothing change in broad daylight with strangers trekking up the dish with googly eyes wondering “what” is going on. I owned it and just rolled with it not caring if a teenage boy with his mom saw my exposed bra or awkward facial expression of a hee hee hee yeah this is me in nature changing into a dress here right now so turn your head thanks. Sometimes you just gotta do what you gots to do…right?!
Justin is such a great photographer and director because he makes the experience painless and guides you. It is effortless and becomes much easier to get through because of his skill, direction, eagle eye, creativity, humor, and professionalism. One of Justin’s pictures unreleased till now from the VF shoot in August. Look at my stunning girlfriend Renee in black and the legs on the gorgeous guest next to her!Another Justin Coit pic from the VF party. My husband looks too cute! And my pic Justin took from the VF shoot in August….love the richness of all the colors. Dress is Ted Baker styled by Hasti Kashfia
Tomorrow we have more footage we need to get for another media piece with ABC News 7. I have arranged for my client George to have a coffee date in the morning with a lovely Danish woman who has graciously agreed to participate in this piece. After that wraps, I need to catch up on emails big time….being away from the office doing media projects makes the emails pile up on one another. Friday I have a new VIP coming on board, which is fantastic. If the weather permits, I think we’ll do our meeting over lunch al fresco.
My days are literally never alike and there are always a wide range of emotions as well. From one couple that is elated at meeting one another reporting back with rave reviews for feedback, to not so great news like breakups. I really feel my clients’ pain when they go through hard times and sometimes end their Linx relationships. I think breakups are definitely one of “the” most difficult aspects of my job that I never look forward to – especially as I am always rooting on the sidelines as their biggest fans when they are coupled up. It’s kind of like I am breaking up with them if that makes sense. We’ve so invested in this process together.
Now I can’t wait to kick my feet up for the night and just spend time with my husband and son (pup) whom I feel like I’ve been neglecting this week. We call it parachuting in and out of the home life. This week I’ve been so tethered to work that I have been parachuted out of my family time for a lot of it but luckily for me have parachuted back in…at least for tonight to catch up on those nearest and dearest to my heart.
Follow me on Twitter @linxdating
We can probably all relate to the utter pain and agony Marianne Dashwood experiences when Willoughby breaks her heart. Although they flirted, shared in artistic pleasures together, were affectionate….his words never expressed a hint at any engagement.
Remember this when dating. The man who your heart flutters with excitement over might be another Willoughby type. Sorry to burst your bubble but these guys are everywhere out there. He’s incredibly handsome and seems most excellent on paper. He’s charming, will date you, kiss you, and leave you wanting more but won’t necessarily settle down (or is just not a good man in general).
For all you know, he’s out and about galavanting around (in the novel, Austen created him as a protagonist driven by the need for his own pleasure and not one who values an emotional connection like Marianne experienced) and ends up playing you like a fiddle. He tells you he isn’t ready to get serious, doesn’t desire marriage, or perhaps has gotten more serious with someone else.
I‘ve dated the Willoughby type in the city and oh did my heart break in two. I was quite confident that my Willoughby and I would end up together until one day after many dates he sat me down at a bar and declared that I was one of many girls he was seeing and I didn’t have what he needed. He said something along the lines of he needed someone smarter. Wow did that feel like a dagger through my heart and also like a giant “who do you think you are” saying that to ME moment? What you need a female Einstein…seriously so insulting! It was his way of telling me he needed to continue to date others and be a player. I was so mesmerized at how perfect on paper he was for me that I never really read the signs. There were many signs along the way (not calling when he said he would call, being uncomfortable with emotion, wanting to sleep together with no commitment, and on and on.)
I believe he took great pleasure in dating up a storm and having the “ultimate control” over the women in his life who he knew he had in the palm of his hand since he was a modern-day Willoughby. He had many women in his life all on speed dial, kept many secrets along the way (he made each of us feel we were his only one…that was something that made it all so confusing!), and when things started getting more serious (like me hinting at becoming exclusive together) he freaked out and went cold turkey. It was as if I didn’t even recognize him. Who was this monster in my presence that could be so cruel and sink my hopes? He let go and dumped the girls (myself included) who needed something he couldn’t provide being a commitment.
Let’s not forget that he expected that you’d sleep with him anyways even through no commitment was there. As Cher would say in Clueless, “As if!” On a side note, Clueless is loosely based off of Jane Austen’s novel, Emma. There are many parallels to the film and novel. Both Cher and Emma are matchmakers to their friends.
Enjoy the complete film here.
At Linx we embrace our clients working around the clock for them. Today one VIP surprised me with a kind unexpected gesture. This man is truly a dynamic and extremely desirable gentleman. It is our mission to find him the love of his life this year.
For those reading, if you are interested in seeing if you qualify to meet him after reading this short description, ping me asap. He is early 50’s, yet looks as though he is in his early 40’s. He is 6’0″, has a very confident and commanding presence, Caucasian, and extremely fit. He has the most piercing blue eyes and ready white smile ever….straight out of a Colgate commercial. He is Stanford educated and running his own hyper successful business.
A true reinanance man who is passionate about: giving back to the community, the arts, fitness, spirituality, yoga, wine, fast cars, and surfing. He is a class act, warm, compassionate, intellectual, loving, and very family centric. Never married, no kids. 2013 is absolutely “his year” to have Linx help him in his quest to find his princess. His dream girl is incredibly beautiful outside and inside, warm, smart, sweet, deeply caring, happy, balanced, fit, and desiring marriage and children like he is.
This man is a true gentleman in every sense of the word. He will literally roll out the red carpet throughout an entire marriage. If you are desiring a handsome prince charming who is so far above and beyond so many guys in terms of elegance, class, depth, success, and kind-heartedness he is “your” guy. We are committed to finding him “the one” by June of this year.
This Fall season will involve a ton of green colors, statement purses, brooches, and lots of jackets to throw over your perfect date ensemble. Lips are perfectly pouty in cherry, legs are shown wearing tight leather, and navy is another color that is hot- mixed with black too (which I have always done).
I just received my Neiman Marcus Fall Book in the mail yesterday and I tore out a few things I thought Linx ladies might like. First, I am obsessing with Rachel Zoe’s new jewelry line- love, love, love AND affordable too (under $200) which is fantastic! Any Linx clients know I am huge into statement necklaces for dating- they serve as the perfect ice breaker, flirting device, and way to get your dates eyes gazing at ahhh the chest. It reminds him he is on a date and to lust after how gorg you are!
I also love the look that is included here in the entry of a sexy figure accentuating dress in a fab color, mixed with texture rich clutch, bold statement necklace, lady-like navy pumps, and a tailored jackets to wear upon arrival at your date (then of course removing during dinner to temp in more ways than one.) Yummy!
As summer comes to an end in the next month or so, I’d love to get your comments as to your fav fashion for Fall. What makes you feel sexiest when dating and what will you splurge on for new trends and skip out on for this season?
A short and sweet little post about charming a guy with the simplicity of wearing a charm bracelet. When my sister and I were very little, our mom started a wonderful tradition with us where we would add fun charms to our sterling silver bracelet after memorable family vacations or nostalgic occasions (graduation, getting your drivers license, getting a family puppy, etc). At this point, my bracelet is so loaded with charms (favorites include: a little bird cage from my grandma on my father’s side, a poodle, a high heel, and a best friend heart split in two.)
I don’t always wear my bracelet but when I do, I notice it is a fabulous way to share a story about yourself in such a genuine and authentic way. Not only does it make a loud jingle jangle sound as you bounce down the street but once on your date, inevitably he will ask what that is around your wrist and let the conversation start! You know he will want to know more and more! It’s just such a sassy flirting mechanism that every IT girl should try!
I think it is a lot more fun to buy a quality empty bracelet and slowly start collecting charms through the decades versus buying one that is already set with charms which might not have any particular meaning to you. It can become a bit of a scavenger hunt while on holiday as you search for the cutest, shiniest, little keepsake.
James Avery Craftsman out of Texas has quite the collection of very durable and well made sterling bracelets and the sweetest little charms ever. I have had my James Avery bracelet (including many of their charms) for goodness knows a very long time!
(1) A Caucasian, tall, slender, graceful, blond who is in her late 30s, very well educated and working in the internet real estate industry. She’s classy, soft-spoken, and feminine, while also dynamic and independent. She has a wide range of interests and prides herself in being an avid traveler – two of her recent trips were the Hamptons and Switzerland. This fabulous woman loves sports and spends time watching baseball, football, and tennis and enjoys live sporting events (her sports knowledge can probably rival any guy’s). Her ideal leading man is Caucasian, sophisticated, geeky, eccentric, quietly confident, and preferably tall. Deal breakers include: too Type A, aggressive, and doesn’t want kids.
(2) An incredibly wholesome late 20s Caucasian woman residing on the Peninsula. She is a graduate of a top liberal arts school and also has a Law degree. Physically she is 5’ 7” and naturally beautiful with fair skin, dark long brown hair, and a very sweet smile. Her interests include cars, entertaining for close friends and family, old films, the arts, and reading… she considers herself a voracious reader (favorites include The Power of One by Bryce Courtney, Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford, and most things by Agatha Christie) Her ideal match is a dynamic gentleman of any ethnicity, intellectual, geeky, a good communicator, and family centric. Deal breakers include: life-of-the-party, apolitical, has kids, over 42.
(3) A thoughtful and inquisitive early 40s Caucasian gentleman, Ivy League educated for his undergraduate and postgraduate, he spends his time as an executive at a hot tech company. He is funny, down to earth, liberal, and very kind-hearted. His passions include daily swimming, reading fiction, skiing, tennis, lots of laughter, wine and entertaining. This gentleman has lived all around the world. Including Canada, Europe, and the East Coast. He grew up Christian, appreciates Buddhism, and would like his dream match to have a spiritual core to her. His perfect match is a naturally beautiful woman in her early to mid 30’s, any ethnicity, and ideally career driven and either in (or with experience having been in) a leadership role. Importantly, she is intellectually curious, has an unwavering happiness about her, is thoughtful, and quick witted. Deal breakers include: very traditional, conservative, moody, over 36, atheist.
(4) A vibrant and athletic Caucasian guy in his mid 20s, Stanford educated, and now working for a very well known tech company. His best physical features are his contagious smile, football-like physique, strong broad shoulders and dark brown features. Being a total guy’s guy, he loves sports, trucks, poker and BBQ-ing with friends and family. He’s young and extremely goal oriented, down to earth, funny, and just an overall fun guy with a very cheerful and “can-do” energy who is ready for commitment. He is looking for this same positive energy in his match – someone who enjoys the little things in life, leads an active lifestyle, enjoys dining and entertaining, and can be equally comfortable in the city drinking fine wine or appreciating the country life kicking dirt around listening to a country music concert. She is Caucasian, Latin or Asian American ethnicity under 30 years old, petite with curves, bubbly, sweet, and smart. Deal breakers include: curly hair, extremes with religion, has kids, doesn’t want kids, atheist, and someone who is too environmental.
If you feel you make a wonderful potential match for any of these clients, please contact Amy today! firstname.lastname@example.org