A recent survey by the Knot said that the economy is not impacting how much couples spend on bridal jewelry.
The survey tallied 9,000 recently married couples, and was administered by DRI.
Among its findings:
– Couples shop together. Two-thirds (67%) of brides are involved in the selection and purchase of their engagement ring. A third of brides even visit ring retailers without their fiancés.
– Couples are still spending. 80% of couples claimed that they were not downsizing their ring as a result of the current economy. The average spend on an engagement ring is $5,800, with over 20% of couples spending more than they had originally planned. Although 16% of couples determined the engagement ring budget together, the groom ultimately made the decision (82%).
– Brides receive first choice. A majority of brides received their first choice of stone shape/cut, 67% and metal, 78% and when it comes to choosing a ring. Stone cut/shape and style/setting were the most important attributes, with 53% and 52% respectively ranking it as #1 or #2. Price/value and stone size tied as the fourth attribute under consideration.
– White gold and princess cuts are on the rise. Since 2005, the preference for white gold engagement ring has increased by more than 30% and the princess cut has gained in popularity (over 25%). Preference for the round cut has remained steady. The average center stone is just over 1 carat, and rings’ average total carat size is 1.5 carats.
– Couples not going for matching wedding bands. Couples are spending over $2,000 for both of their bands, and the bride is getting top billing – as they spend almost twice as much on hers than his. Only 15% of couples purchased matching wedding bands. It’s no surprise that the over 60% of brides chose bands with bling (only 15% of grooms have bands with diamonds), while grooms chose rings with a ‘comfort’ fit.