TSP

Many modern couples now lean toward other offerings not only for the uniqueness they provide, but also for the potential cost savings. Those seeking something unique can embrace these engagement ring options.

Engagement rings are often sizable investments. Money magazine reports the average engagement ring costs around $5,800. An engagement ring symbolizes the start of a lifelong commitment and may even set the tone for a couple’s wedding day.

Jewelry styles are personal, and grooms-to-be should carefully research their significant others’ preferences in terms of precious metals, colors and gemstones. Even though tradition holds that a diamond gemstone is classic for engagement rings, these precious stones are not the only options. In fact, before World War II, just 10 percent of proposals involved diamond engagement rings. That number jumped to 80 percent by 1990. However, many modern couples now lean toward other offerings not only for the uniqueness they provide, but also for the potential cost savings.

Those seeking something unique can embrace these engagement ring options.

• Amethyst: This vibrant, lavender-hued stone can be breathtaking when cut the correct way. Purple shades have long been associated with royalty, making an amethyst fitting for such an occasion as special as an engagement. Because amethysts, which are less expensive than diamonds, are a seven on the Mohs scale for gemstone hardness, they can be very durable.

• Knot rings: These rings do not have a center stone. Rather, they’re designed to be a tied knot or infinity symbol. These rings can be particularly sentimental as they represent true, unbroken love.

• Opal: Gemstones, like flowers, have been assigned certain meanings. Tying the engagement ring to one of them can infuse more symbolism into the relationship. Opal, for example, represents love, passion, creativity, spontaneity, and inspiration. Those traits seem tailor-made for surprise proposals.

• Sapphire: While sapphire stones often are blue, they can also be yellow, green, pink, and white. Sapphires are the third hardest mineral. A white sapphire can be the perfect diamond replacement.

• Garnet or ruby: Red is the definitive color of love. A Valentine’s Day proposal can be made even more special by presenting an engagement ring with a red gemstone.

• Moissanite: The jewelry source Brilliant Earth says moissanite is a gemstone first discovered in 1893 by Henri Moissan in a meteorite that fell to earth. It is remarkably similar to a diamond in appearance and strength. Moissanite also has heightened brilliance, with a refractive index higher than that of a diamond.

Couples have many beautiful alternatives to diamonds that they can explore when shopping for engagement rings.

More from this section

Growing up, Robert Phillips never really had aspirations of leaving his hometown of Augusta. He was entirely content to spend his life there with his exceptionally large family.

School may be out of session, but that certainly doesn’t mean children should stray away from learning. Parents are always looking for ways to keep their little one’s engaged during their break — and one local resource is a go-to when it comes to summer learning programs — the Marshes of Gly…

Bursting with the aromatic flavors of saffron, chorizo and garlic, this chicken and couscous dish is a winning weeknight dinner. When developing this recipe, we started with classic chicken and rice, but found that the rice was not cooking at the same rate as the chicken in the multicooker_w…

Rotator cuff injuries don’t just happen to tennis players and baseball pitchers. The rotator cuff, a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, can also be torn by falling on the shoulder or lifting something heavy, and sometimes tears result from wear on the tendon due t…