Planning to propose with a family’s heirloom engagement ring can be tricky business. Not only do you essentially have to ask someone to give up their jewelry, but you have to follow proper etiquette when it comes to resetting and more. If you’re hoping to get permission to pop the question with a heirloom engagement ring, just follow these golden rules.
Here’s everything you need to know if you want to propose with a heirloom engagement ring.
Ask both sides of the family about heirlooms
A family heirloom engagement ring can come from either your or your partner’s side and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a traditional wedding ring. If you’re having a hard time choosing which side of the family the ring should come from, don’t over think it. If you’re asking for your partner’s hand in marriage, the possibility of using a heirloom ring in your proposal may come up naturally. If there are multiple rings to choose from, pick a ring based on family history or tradition—such as if a ring has been passed down from generation to generation or if the ring belonged to family member who is particularly special to your partner. And if there isn’t a ring at all, there may be another piece of jewelry that can be reset into a ring (diamonds from an heirloom necklace, for example).
Know the ring’s back story
It’s a good idea to learn the history behind the ring before you start asking for permission to use it. Knowing who the ring first belonged to or how the ring came into the family will make your proposal that much more meaningful. Also, you can easily figure out which part of the ring, the diamond, band etc. is the most special to the family—which is great for resetting purposes. Getting the lowdown on the ring’s back story is even a segway into the conversation of having the ring passed down—if you’re worried about how to start that convo.
Don’t assume you’ll be given the ring
Just because you want to propose with the heirloom, doesn’t mean it’s automatically yours. You MUST ask permission to have the ring passed down. Plan a time to meet with the family member and get to know them (if you haven’t done so already). This catch up will make asking for the ring more personal, and let them know that the ring is important to both you and your S.O.