Both the engagement ring and the wedding band have special importance in the progression of a relationship. Each represents a promise (one of marriage, one of a lifetime together) and carries with it a weighty responsibility. But while they are similar in many ways, they also have marked differences that may affect the selection process. If you feel that it is only the engagement ring that requires special scrutiny, you couldn’t be more wrong. In some ways, selecting the right wedding band is even more important. Here are a few ways in which the two rings are very different and why you need to consider them carefully.
For starters, there are the obvious physical differences. Traditionally, the engagement ring is a solitaire (a single diamond mounted on a plain band), although as long as there is a large central stone present, it seems that just about anything is acceptable these days. The wedding band, on the other hand, is usually plain and simple, although it sometimes includes smaller stones (as with an eternity band or a wedding set that includes the engagement ring and a complimentary wedding band) or has a motif, significant phrase, or promise etched into it.
Then there is the disparity in meaning to consider. Both the intention and action behind these two rings is different in nature. When an engagement ring is given, it can be done in a number of ways, most of which have special significance to the particular couple. There is no correct way to propose marriage. The actual wedding, on the other hand, requires that certain standards be adhered to. For one thing, the couple must, without fail, pledge their lives to one another. Further, the engagement ring poses a question while the wedding ring symbolizes the answer. Engagements can be broken much more easily than married couples can be divorced from one another.
While it may seem, on the surface, that these two rings represent the same thing, it simply isn’t true. So you should certainly take your time choosing an engagement ring that your fiancé will treasure, but don’t think the job ends there. Just as much care should be put into consideration of the wedding bands, especially since they are the symbol of your shared bond, on both the day you say your “I dos” and for the rest of your lives together.