No sense dancing around the fact: diamonds are so expensive. Most often, when browsing for engagement rings, the price that is posted refers only to the setting, labour, and brand name—the diamond of your dreams will most often be cost added. This is for good reason: this means you can often choose a stone that will best suit your budget and wants.
But if you want a sizeable diamond, with good clarity, colour, and cut, you're likely coming up against a pretty big price tag. This can be super disheartening—you find what you think is a ring in your price range, you choose a gem that looks beautiful, you add the tax... And things can get out of hand.
There are a few ways to avoid this kind of sticker shock while still winding up with a gorgeous engagement ring. For proof? Here's our best tips for keeping cost down, and ten gorgeous engagement rings that you can snap up for under $1,500.
Try alternate stones
This first and easiest way to keep costs down is—and stick with us here—opting for a stone that isn't a diamond. We love a gorgeous coloured stone, like morganite or sapphire, to start. These are often far more affordable options. However, if you love a classic diamond look, opt for a moissanite stone! Moissanite is lab grown and is actually more brilliant than diamond, but will run a fraction of the cost. Moissanite is a favourite in our office and can be the secret weapon your engagement ring needs.
Go with a tried and true design
There's often a real desire to have your engagement ring custom designed. This is also the case, to some degree, even as you choose your specific stone even with a pre-designed band and setting. Sticking with a simple, classic design that is a mainstay in a jewelry company's catalogue is a great way to save money—and sometimes you can even swing engagement and wedding band bundles to save more. A straightforward design is no less romantic, and it can make it easier to make the most of your wedding budget.
Save on metals
Gold is expensive, too! Sometimes you can make a few hundred dollars difference by opting for a lower carat gold instead of 24k or 18k, or instead of platinum. 10k gold, for example, is much stronger than 18k gold for its higher percentage of metal alloys which make up the rest of the metal composition. It has a slightly paler colour, which some people actually prefer—and it is way more affordable. Make sure you explore which metals are the most affordable when selecting your ring.
Halos, pavés, and prongs, oh my!
You can get the appearance of a larger stone by selecting white gold prongs! White gold prongs emphasize the sparkle of a white centre stone like a diamond or moissanite. Similarly, going for an arrangement like a halo of small diamonds will exaggerate the size of the stone at a glance. This is the intention with gorgeous, tiny pavé diamonds as well. Because of their size, when set together, it gives the appearance of a much larger diamond for a much smaller price tag.
Perhaps the most underrated option when ring shopping on a budget is to consider vintage rings! When we collect gorgeous vintage rings, for example, we have all of them appraised—and you'll find that we habitually sell them for hundreds of dollars less than their appraised retail value. With vintage rings, which can be polished to look brand new, there's an opportunity to find your dream ring at a much lower price point! There's also something undeniably romantic about encountering your dream ring and finding out that it's vintage—it's likely one of a kind, could be a hundred years old, and it found its way to you. It's fate! (PS—we've just shared some new vintage beauties! Check them out here!)
A little bonus tip for you: bigger retailers like Michael Hill and Spence Diamonds are in the habit of some serious markups. In patronizing smaller businesses, you can save a very pretty penny!
xo Team Evorden