Now that it's officially wedding season, it's safe to say that love is in the air!
And just in case you're in the market for a dazzling engagement ring, we tapped celebrity jewelry designer Neil Lane, who has recently partnered with Kay Jewelers, for his expert advice on selecting the perfect piece of bling for your beloved.
Here's what he shared with us:
1. Get Involved: More and more, I see couples embarking on the selection process together, which allows them to create a personal and memorable experience that reflects this special time in their lives.
One great tip for a groom-to-be is to go window shopping with his significant other to learn what style she likes! When working with Nicole Richie and Joel Madden, Nicole wanted a beautiful, special ring and to be intimately involved in the design, while Joel just wanted her to have the ring of her dreams.
On the other hand, Mark-Paul Gosselaar knew from the start that he wanted an engagement ring to exude romance. He and I worked on creating a gorgeous ring for then-girlfriend Catriona McGinn based on a photo she had given him for inspiration.
2. Track Trends: Stylish tastemakers are looking for intricate detail and design sensibility in their engagement rings and more than ever, I am seeing a continued interest in rings that have vintage inspiration but also modern appeal.
Right now, twisted or entwined bands are popular, adding a memorable touch of symbolism by bringing the metals together as the couple does the same.
Rose gold is also trending in fashion and bridal. Mixing rose gold with white gold creates a romantic and vintage look with a contemporary feel—this is also a great example of a unique design that's also on trend.
3. Take Your Time: There are a variety of popular diamond cuts and settings that can be used in the creation a ring. Don't get overwhelmed! My advice is to enjoy learning about the options so that you end up with the perfect ring that will be treasured for a lifetime. Here are a few of my favorite cuts:
Cushion, named for its pillow-like shape, is one of the favorites for engagement rings and other special occasions or milestones. I had a great time working with Rodger Berman on a 10-carat cushion-cut diamond ring for Rachel Zoe as an anniversary present!
Marquise-cut diamonds are also beautiful and unique with a long and slender shape—it's what Ellen DeGeneres had me create for Portia De Rossi when they got engaged. And, pear shape is also an exciting stone, with soft curves that make it very feminine.
4. Make it Personal: Whether you want to incorporate a family heirloom or customize to a specific taste, it's all about making it personal.
I worked with Christina Applegate to create a special piece for her wedding to musician Martyn LeNoble. We took her engagement ring and fit it in a sleeve of little diamonds to become the wedding band. Other clients have asked me to create curved bands or inserts—I love bringing a vision to life in a stunning ring or wedding band!
5. Have Fun! More than anything, the most important piece of advice I can share is to have fun and enjoy the process. You are celebrating such a special moment! As long as your selection reflects a personal touch and the love you share, you can't go wrong.