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Discover the top 5 things to consider before getting down on one knee, including setting an engagement ring budget, finding your partner’s ring size and how to nail that perfect proposal.


“Will you marry me?” is perhaps the biggest question you’ll ever ask. So it’s no wonder that planning the perfect marriage proposal can give you a few sleepless nights. But fear not, here we will take you through the top 5 things to consider before getting down on one knee, including setting an engagement ring budget, finding your partner’s ring size and how to nail that perfect proposal.

1. Setting an engagement ring budget

For good reason, the age-old tradition of having to save up two or three months’ salary for an engagement ring is outdated and, nowadays, there aren’t any set rules around how much you should spend. Instead, it’s much more about finding a style that your partner will love and that you can comfortably afford.

However, the importance of setting a budget can’t be underestimated. Not only does it help you to narrow down a huge range of options, but it ensures that you don’t over-stretch yourself by falling for a ring that is out of your price range. Rest assured though, we have plenty of beautiful options that will make them swoon without putting an uncomfortable dent in your wallet.

If you don’t want to save up the whole cost in advance, or simply want to take off the financial pressure, our Interest-Free Credit option could be the one for you. You can find more information on how ring financing works, engagement ring ideas on a budget, and tips on how to make your money go further in our guide ‘Shop Savvy: Engagement Rings On A Budget’

2. Narrowing down the engagement ring styles

Now that you’ve got a budget in place, it’s time for the fun to begin! At H.Samuel, the most popular engagement ring styles are elegant solitaires, classic halo, unique cluster designs or eye-catching trilogy rings, but we have rings available in many different designs, so you’ll be sure to find one to suit your partner’s taste. It may be that you’ve already been given some hints about what their dream engagement ring style is, but if not, following these tips will help you narrow it down:

Time to rack your brain. Have they ever pointed out a ring they like in a jeweller’s window? Or have they commented on a friend’s or celebrity’s ring style saying how much they love it? If so, piecing together all these little hints is a great way to work out what their dream ring style is.

● If you are sure they’ll keep the secret, consider speaking to a trusted friend or family member because chances are they’ll know exactly what they like.

Look at your partner’s day jewellery. Do they tend to go for a simple and classic look, or do they prefer something a bit more glitzy? See whether there is a metal colour they favour as that could give you a clue as to what engagement ring band styles they’d like.

● Whilst a big bit of bling might look amazing, it isn’t always a practical choice, so it’s best to consider their lifestyle and profession when picking a ring style. If they’re very active or have a career where they need to use their hands a lot, it’s best to choose a low-set ring style with a more durable metal.

Speak to an expert. We know that an engagement ring is one of the most important and meaningful purchases you’ll ever make, so it has to be perfect. Visit us in-store where one of our friendly team will be able to chat through the options, explain the 4 C’s and help you find an engagement style that will suit their taste and your budget.

3. How to measure ring size

Knowing your partner’s ring size certainly makes the proposal much smoother, because after all, trying to squeeze a ring onto their finger doesn’t exactly scream romance!

If you’re wondering how to measure ring size, the easiest and oldest trick in the book is to sneakily use one of their other rings to get a size approximation from your jewellers. However, it’s important you know which finger and hand they wear that particular ring on. If you can’t stealthily borrow the ring to have the size measured at a jeweller, try putting it on your finger and drawing around it, or draw around it on a piece of paper. For more detailed tips on finding out your partner’s ring size, see our how to find your partner’s ring size guide, or if you are measuring it yourself, see our ring size conversion guide for details on converting the measurements into sizes.

4. Engagement ring insurance

Although not as exciting as planning how you’ll pop the question, getting engagement ring insurance is one of the most sensible investments you can make. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry, especially with such a meaningful purchase that you’ll want to last a lifetime.

H. Samuel offers unrivalled service plans to give you peace of mind knowing that your valuable item is protected wherever you are in the world.

5. Planning the perfect proposal

If you are feeling the pressure to come up with romantic ways to propose, trust us when we say, you’re not alone. The most important thing to remember is that there is no right or wrong way to propose, and regardless of whether you forget a few lines, it will be one of the most special and memorable moments of your life. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for that milestone moment…

  • Speak to the people who matter: Whilst this may seem like a somewhat old-fashioned tradition, for many people it’s an absolute must that their partner asks permission from their parents before proposing. So it’s better to be safe than sorry and to find out whether that is something your fiancé-to-be would appreciate. If your partner’s parents are separated, then it’s best to speak to them both individually so everyone feels included. Because after all, the last thing you want is to enter into your engagement on less than perfect terms with your future in-laws!

  • What is the best way to propose? From the intimate to the over-the-top outlandish, when planning a proposal, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when looking at all the endless list of proposal ideas online. However, the most important thing to ask yourself is what would make your partner happy? If they have ever hinted at certain things they would or wouldn’t like in a proposal, be sure to bear those in mind. For example, if your fiancé isn’t a fan of public displays of affection or being the centre of attention, then it’s best to plan something private and intimate. Or, if they’d love you to pull out all the stops, have a think about ways you could involve friends and family in the big moment. Remember that there is no right or wrong way to do it, it really does come down to personal taste.

  • How to personalise a proposal: Personalising your engagement proposal is hands down the best way to ramp up the romance. Are there any dates that have a significant meaning in your relationship? Or a special place that means a lot to you? Perhaps a certain saying or even a song? Another way to make it more romantic is to plan what to say when you are proposing. Chances are you’re going to be feeling pretty nervous, so rather than adding extra stress by trying to memorise lines, just remember the main points, such as why you want to marry them and how they make you feel. Oh, and don’t forget that key question “Will you marry me?”.

  • Should you kneel when proposing? Again, this is a very personal choice, but if your partner likes things done the traditional way, then they’ll probably be hoping you do kneel. Which knee you kneel on doesn’t matter, but it’s best to practice getting up and down a few times to make sure you don’t have an awkward wobble.

Ready to get planning?

However you choose to propose, your partner will appreciate all the time and effort you’ve put into making it unique. When you are ready to put your proposal planning into action, browse our collection of exclusive engagement rings, or visit us at your local H.Samuel store where one of the team will be more than happy to answer your questions and to help you find that perfect ring.