Author Topic: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?  (Read 24187 times)

justajane

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #50 on: July 28, 2016, 06:55:20 PM »
I just don't see a one-time extravagant purchase of a ring to be that big of deal for dual income earners who make a decent income.

The problem is they are not a dual income couple.  She has made it clear she will not contribute towards the ring.  He is still in school and his 6 figure salary is 1-2 years away from becoming a reality.

I see your point. I do think it a little strange that she won't kick in some of her money, since she is currently the higher earner. I was just looking at it long term...you know, when they're married and her money is his and vice versa.

MrsDinero

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #51 on: July 28, 2016, 07:17:17 PM »
I think it is strange how a lot of people are encouraging this guy to go ahead any buy it, when if it was anything other than an engagement ring people would be facepunching him.

It comes down to:
This guy wants to buy something that is 52% of his current cash savings.  He currently has more debt than his non-steady income.  He MIGHT make more in a couple of years time, but right now his student loans are more than he earns.  This item he buys will depreciate in value the moment he pays for it.  It is a bad financial move.

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #52 on: July 28, 2016, 07:50:49 PM »

The first situation merits a discussion with your wife, where you lay out your concerns and worries. If she's a reasonable adult who loves you, she will respond with a solution. The second situation should also trigger a conversation about your expectations regarding money, and how that will intersect her sphere.


I agree with this OP - time for you to have another conversation with your gf.

From my, entirely subjective, point of view - both your stances seem reasonable. You aren't earning an income currently, as you're a full time student - buying a 5k ring seems crazy in that situation. She, on the other hand, is almost on 100K a year and will likely earn more. Likewise, you'll also be high earning in the future. so, a 5K costco ring is an entirely reasonable wish.

One solution that acknowledges both positions is to push back the engagement until you're at least earning your internship money, but ideally, when you've landed that 180K job. Yes, that means you're waiting a while but my preference would be to do things like marriage, kids, home buying when both in full time employment.

Inaya

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #53 on: July 28, 2016, 07:54:50 PM »

The first situation merits a discussion with your wife, where you lay out your concerns and worries. If she's a reasonable adult who loves you, she will respond with a solution. The second situation should also trigger a conversation about your expectations regarding money, and how that will intersect her sphere.


I agree with this OP - time for you to have another conversation with your gf.

From my, entirely subjective, point of view - both your stances seem reasonable. You aren't earning an income currently, as you're a full time student - buying a 5k ring seems crazy in that situation. She, on the other hand, is almost on 100K a year and will likely earn more. Likewise, you'll also be high earning in the future. so, a 5K costco ring is an entirely reasonable wish.

One solution that acknowledges both positions is to push back the engagement until you're at least earning your internship money, but ideally, when you've landed that 180K job. Yes, that means you're waiting a while but my preference would be to do things like marriage, kids, home buying when both in full time employment.


I like the waiting idea. We met and fell in love in high school (2000), but we waited until school was done and stable jobs were obtained--we were married in 2014. Maybe wait a bit (but maybe not 14 years!) and see if the ring is still important--if it isn't great, now you know. If it is, great, now you know.

Typhoid Mary

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #54 on: July 28, 2016, 08:11:39 PM »
My 2 cents FWIW - 15 years ago when DH and I were discussing matrimony, I too got googoo eyed over sparkly rocks of smashed carbon and yearned for something flashy that would make my hand shimmer like a thousand baby angels sat upon my finger.  We were just two kids trying to make a go of adulthood and didn't have a pot to piss in, much less thousands of dollars for an engagement ring. So, unbeknownst to me, DH met with a local jeweler and the two of them designed a ring for me. The actual diamond size is only 1/3 of a carat (smaller than 20 year old me thought I deserved) but it's a brilliant white (no one likes yellowed diamonds!) and the band is simple, and architecturally elegant - and designed by my DH. He explained how he wanted me to have a ring like no one else had, completely custom, that reflected how he envisioned our love - simple, pure, and unadulterated - one of a kind... I bawled like a baby when he gave it to me, and I can't fathom the hours that went into the craftsmanship from the jeweler.  Unrelated plus side, my girl friends were envious because their rings were "off the rack" and mine had a romantic back story. Total cost? $1000, which he paid cash.  It's the only piece of jewelry I wear, and sometimes when I'm really pissed off at him (happens sometimes when you've been together this long....), the light catches the ring just right and it is like a thousand baby angels gleaming off my finger when I flip him the bird.

PDM

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #55 on: July 28, 2016, 08:21:26 PM »
I can recommend Blue Nile as a decent place to get jewelry from. We got our wedding bands from there. For her engagement ring I spent a fair bit more and had it made by a local jeweler. It was/is lovely, but pretty expensive.

A few options - go for a different stone? Consider something 'vintage' from a antique shop etc if that is her style?  Is there a family heirloom you can claim?

Inaya

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #56 on: July 28, 2016, 08:26:33 PM »
My 2 cents FWIW - 15 years ago when DH and I were discussing matrimony, I too got googoo eyed over sparkly rocks of smashed carbon and yearned for something flashy that would make my hand shimmer like a thousand baby angels sat upon my finger.  We were just two kids trying to make a go of adulthood and didn't have a pot to piss in, much less thousands of dollars for an engagement ring. So, unbeknownst to me, DH met with a local jeweler and the two of them designed a ring for me. The actual diamond size is only 1/3 of a carat (smaller than 20 year old me thought I deserved) but it's a brilliant white (no one likes yellowed diamonds!) and the band is simple, and architecturally elegant - and designed by my DH. He explained how he wanted me to have a ring like no one else had, completely custom, that reflected how he envisioned our love - simple, pure, and unadulterated - one of a kind... I bawled like a baby when he gave it to me, and I can't fathom the hours that went into the craftsmanship from the jeweler.  Unrelated plus side, my girl friends were envious because their rings were "off the rack" and mine had a romantic back story. Total cost? $1000, which he paid cash.  It's the only piece of jewelry I wear, and sometimes when I'm really pissed off at him (happens sometimes when you've been together this long....), the light catches the ring just right and it is like a thousand baby angels gleaming off my finger when I flip him the bird.


+100000
Love this so much--especially the punchline.

pbkmaine

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #57 on: July 28, 2016, 08:27:30 PM »
Is this is what she wants, and she's perfect in every other way, then get her the ring.

snogirl

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #58 on: July 28, 2016, 09:41:12 PM »
Why can't it ever be happy husband happy life??????

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rothnroll

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #59 on: July 28, 2016, 11:54:04 PM »
Personally I would get the ring she likes for 5k.
She will be happy with it.
She will also think about you when she looks at it.
My savings rate is about 55% right now, and I wouldn't skimp on that.

Larsg

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #60 on: July 29, 2016, 12:12:58 AM »
When you're an old Geezer like I am now...49, believe me, you won't care one bit about the trinkets you bought and you will think back on all the good things that money could have bought. 5K over 20-30 years, invested well, allowing time to live and love life...that is what this is all about. And when you get to this stage, you reflect on things like, was I good to people, did I step up with the best character, did I love and lead enough...you , seldom remember the trinkets - only how much they really don't matter and look back in amazement at how hard you worked for them and how really meaningless all those material things are in the end. It's about the people in your life, the time you have to spend with them, learning, teaching, enjoying. Those things are very hard work and provide limitless value that can never be lost. Invest the 5K - this week for example, I would have put it into FB - I already have a ton in that, lucky me :).
« Last Edit: July 29, 2016, 12:16:57 AM by Larsg »

Kaminoge

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #61 on: July 29, 2016, 12:58:56 AM »
It's the only piece of jewelry I wear, and sometimes when I'm really pissed off at him (happens sometimes when you've been together this long....), the light catches the ring just right and it is like a thousand baby angels gleaming off my finger when I flip him the bird.

I love it!

OP at the end of the day you can collect internet opinions all you want but only you know her and whether this strong preference for an expensive bauble paid for entirely by you is a one off thing or indicative of other financial issues.

Personally I skipped the engagement ring and we got married with $20 rings from Amazon so I'm not one to understand the joy of expensive jewelry but...

1. Skipping an engagement ring did lead to a lot of social pressure - mainly on my now husband. I quite happily announced "I'm cheap, I said I didn't want one" and everyone who knows me found that easy to believe. I think he worried more that people thought it was him being cheap when they asked and found we didn't get one.

2. Weddings are weird and do weird things to people. I can completely understand why she doesn't want to chip in to pay for her own engagement ring. I'm not saying it makes sense but I could see it really not being easy to tell people that your husband didn't value you enough to pay for the ring you really wanted and so you paid for half yourself. Of course that's not what you would say... but it's how it would come across to a lot of people.

I'd say talk, talk and talk some more about it with your fiancee. The money isn't really the main issue, it's how she's going to feel about this. If that particular ring is really what she has her heart set on and you want to marry her then, since you can actually afford it, then I think you should. But I'd be more curious to know what it is exactly that is driving her desire for a Costco ring of all things.

At the end of the day $5000 is nothing compared to the cost of marrying the wrong person (read some of the threads on here where people talk about the cost of their divorce if you want some stories) and so I think understanding her thinking is much more important that the cash.

sis

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #62 on: July 29, 2016, 05:19:33 AM »
Thinking about this more.  Maybe you get her the ring at the end of your 2L summer when you've been actually extended a Big Law offer.  As long as you don't screw up too much and don't summer at a firm with bad financials you'll be in good shape.  Then get married right after you take the bar.  You'll have time for a nice honeymoon before getting into big law where your soul will be crushed for the first few years ;-)

DH and I got married after the bar but before he started at his big law job.

Getting engaged now probably doesn't make too much sense unless she wants a two year engagement.  You don't want to be distracted with wedding planning while you are a summer because you should be focused on impressing them.  That said, to get a no offer from a big law firm after summering there meant that you really screwed up...


2Cent

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #63 on: July 29, 2016, 06:33:16 AM »
I always remember this story:
http://www.ultimatehusband.com/8cow_wife.htm

Don't be cheap here. Symbolic value matters. Don't just do the minimum, try to out do her expectations. Go the extra mile. Surprise her. Be romantic. This is not groceries.

justajane

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #64 on: July 29, 2016, 06:54:11 AM »
I really don't think we as commenters should tell the OP when he should propose or get married. "I am going to propose at the end of the year" is how he opened this thread. No doubt. No equivocation. Telling him to wait another six months to a year qualifies as relationship advice, which he didn't really ask for. I guess you could argue that all advice about these kinds of things are at root relationship advice, but I dunno. Telling someone who didn't ask when you think he should get married? I just find that presumptuous and underscores how low the stakes are for all of us on here compared to the OP. This is his life. This is his relationship. I think he knows best when to propose.

jrhampt

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #65 on: July 29, 2016, 07:08:33 AM »
I think it's a ridiculous amount to spend on a ring.  BUT considering your savings and income at your age, if you want to spend a ridiculous amount it would probably not kill you in the grand scheme of things.  I'd blow that on travel in a heartbeat, and your girlfriend/wife will wear it every day, so I suppose you could justify it that way.

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #66 on: July 29, 2016, 07:35:54 AM »
@justajane I re-read my comment and I can see how it, and others comes off that way.  It also looks like I strangely think there are only two marriage models for this couple.

I think I want to say that marriage and relationships are about more than just money, and that the decision needs to be made in the context of their own relationship, which we, as internet commenters don't know anything about.

Mr. Green

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #67 on: July 29, 2016, 07:49:44 AM »
You're going to find a whole lot of people on here who will say that's a lot of money for a trinket. To me, it would be a lot of money for a wedding ring set but you just said it's her dream ring. You could take all these people's advice and try to convince her that her dream is unrealistic. I don't know your girlfriend so I don't know how well that will go over. However, I could think of worse things to spend money on, where you would have rather not spent it. Two summers ago my wife lost her wedding band/engagement ring at the beach and she cried for days. I mean hysterical, hyperventilating crying. It was that important to her. She's a frugal person too so it's not like she heavily values material things. Shoot, she probably considered it her most valuable (emotionally) possession. Everyone is different. You know your money situation and your girlfriend the best. Maybe there's a great alternative, or maybe it's worth it.

sis

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #68 on: July 29, 2016, 07:54:42 AM »
I really don't think we as commenters should tell the OP when he should propose or get married. "I am going to propose at the end of the year" is how he opened this thread. No doubt. No equivocation. Telling him to wait another six months to a year qualifies as relationship advice, which he didn't really ask for. I guess you could argue that all advice about these kinds of things are at root relationship advice, but I dunno. Telling someone who didn't ask when you think he should get married? I just find that presumptuous and underscores how low the stakes are for all of us on here compared to the OP. This is his life. This is his relationship. I think he knows best when to propose.

I was just thinking of how to make the financial burden of an expensive ring have less of an impact on his financial future.  He'll have a lot more available cash after his summer internship than he does now.  I guess that was my main point - financially he'll be in a much better position after his summer.  Also he will know after he summers whether or not big law is for him.  There are definitely people who do the summer internship after 2L and decide "nope" big law is not for me.  The summer internship is definitely big law on easy mode, but he can get an idea of firm culture, etc.  Also, in the very rare instance that he gets no-offered it would make sense to have that available cash.

rubybeth

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #69 on: July 29, 2016, 08:01:40 AM »
I'm also a member of a jewelry forum, and I probably wouldn't buy a ring from CostCo or BlueNile, as recommended in this thread. Another option: buy the center stone and propose with that (or put in a simple solitaire), and then she can buy the setting or upgrade the setting to a halo setting later. Jewelry websites I'd recommend since they aren't drop shippers:

www.whiteflash.com
www.jamesallen.com
www.briangavindiamonds.com

If you want more specific advice, feel free to private message me. I'm happy to help people find rings within their budget.

neo von retorch

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #70 on: July 29, 2016, 08:07:53 AM »
I did not read all replies, forgive me, but I wanted to share our anecdote. When we first started looking, my (now) wife started looking solely at Tiffany engagement rings in the $6000+ price range. It gave me sticker shock, and we had an emotional discussion following this. Of course she liked the idea of a crazy, instantly recognizable brand name high-end ring. But she also values making smart choices with money very much. We talked about what was important to us, what we value in the long-term, and, not without some tears, agreed to consider options outside of the Tiffany bubble. We ended up on www.idonowidont.com, and she actually ended up finding the ring set that we purchased. It was 8-months old, and the recently divorced girl was selling the set for about $1600. The original retail was around $4000. She absolutely loves this ring, and she also absolutely loves that we came to the decision together, agreed upon it, and spent a lot less than the initial suggestions.

Little Aussie Battler

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #71 on: July 29, 2016, 08:09:00 AM »
it's too much for some, and fine for others.

If this is representative of a desire to impress family, friends or co-workers then one could easily  argue against it.

If this is the one time in your entire life that you will spend lots of money on something that isn't necessary or functional then I doubt anyone would argue against it.

The reality is somewhere in between. What do you think? Is it too much for YOU?

Chranstronaut

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #72 on: July 29, 2016, 08:18:08 AM »
...We ended up on www.idonowidont.com, and she actually ended up finding the ring set that we purchased. It was 8-months old, and the recently divorced girl was selling the set for about $1600. The original retail was around $4000. She absolutely loves this ring, and she also absolutely loves that we came to the decision together, agreed upon it, and spent a lot less than the initial suggestions.

This is a great story.  It's a perfect compromise because you both got what you wanted and worked as a team to make it happen -- designer ring AND affordable price point. 

As an engaged person, I like these stories about working together even more than "how s/he proposed stories".

neo von retorch

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #73 on: July 29, 2016, 08:20:54 AM »
This is a great story.
Thanks!
As an engaged person, I like these stories about working together even more than "how s/he proposed stories".
That's too bad, it's a really good story as well :)

MrsDinero

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #74 on: July 29, 2016, 08:24:24 AM »
...We ended up on www.idonowidont.com, and she actually ended up finding the ring set that we purchased. It was 8-months old, and the recently divorced girl was selling the set for about $1600. The original retail was around $4000. She absolutely loves this ring, and she also absolutely loves that we came to the decision together, agreed upon it, and spent a lot less than the initial suggestions.

This is a great story.  It's a perfect compromise because you both got what you wanted and worked as a team to make it happen -- designer ring AND affordable price point. 

As an engaged person, I like these stories about working together even more than "how s/he proposed stories".

I always forget about that site!  I just looked at it and there are several for sale that are very similar to what OP is considering, but at half the cost.

Captain FIRE

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #75 on: July 29, 2016, 08:25:25 AM »
OP at the end of the day you can collect internet opinions all you want but only you know her and whether this strong preference for an expensive bauble paid for entirely by you is a one off thing or indicative of other financial issues.

Personally I skipped the engagement ring and we got married with $20 rings from Amazon so I'm not one to understand the joy of expensive jewelry but...

1. Skipping an engagement ring did lead to a lot of social pressure - mainly on my now husband. I quite happily announced "I'm cheap, I said I didn't want one" and everyone who knows me found that easy to believe. I think he worried more that people thought it was him being cheap when they asked and found we didn't get one.

2. Weddings are weird and do weird things to people. I can completely understand why she doesn't want to chip in to pay for her own engagement ring. I'm not saying it makes sense but I could see it really not being easy to tell people that your husband didn't value you enough to pay for the ring you really wanted and so you paid for half yourself. Of course that's not what you would say... but it's how it would come across to a lot of people.

I'd say talk, talk and talk some more about it with your fiancee. The money isn't really the main issue, it's how she's going to feel about this. If that particular ring is really what she has her heart set on and you want to marry her then, since you can actually afford it, then I think you should. But I'd be more curious to know what it is exactly that is driving her desire for a Costco ring of all things.

At the end of the day $5000 is nothing compared to the cost of marrying the wrong person (read some of the threads on here where people talk about the cost of their divorce if you want some stories) and so I think understanding her thinking is much more important that the cash.

+1 (emphasis added as well)

This is a frugal board.  Of course you're going to get a lot of people here advising against it.  Let's agree - this is not the most frugal move!  Regardless, it may still be the best decision. 

People here are quick to attack things that aren't their gazingas.  If they travel, they attack those living in HOC area.  If they spend money on their children's education (and woe betide one who pays for an ivy league college education rather than making the kid pay), they attack those spend their money on travel.  And so on.

Kamingoe is right.  Figure out if this is a one off, or if this is indicative of a difference in values.  If it's a difference in values, you've got a lot more thinks to coming.  If it's a one off, only you can decide if it's worth it - if she really wants it, it's very sentimental to her, she'll wear it every day as her only piece of jewelry, etc.  Talk to her.

But the other posters are right that you may change your mind about biglaw or not get that plum job.  I had friends that happened to them.  So consider compromises.  There's no need to postpone a wedding over a ring you can't currently afford though.  Why not agree to $100 rings now, until after you start your biglaw job full-time.  Then when you have the income to afford it, replace it.  Use the $100 ring when you travel and you may be worried about safety.  For the $100 ring, consider something quite sentimental - friends of mine made each other rings in a jewelry studio which looked really awesome.  (Btw, don't get $1k rings then upgrade to $5k rings!)

ETA: I will confess that I turned down a family ring, which is not the most frugal move.  My MIL offered us her ring and DH & I both wanted to decline it. I'm not normally a "karma" person, but since her marriage ended *extremely* poorly and DH still has a bad relationship with his dad, I didn't want that to remind me whenever I looked at my ring.  So you may get a great bargain at https://www.idonowidont.com/, but you may want to make sure she's comfortable with it.  An anonymous ring is likely better than a family ring with known really bad history.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2016, 08:29:03 AM by Captain FIRE »

tomatops

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #76 on: July 29, 2016, 08:32:04 AM »
I'm in a relationship and have had discussions on this very topic with friends. For the most part, people have told me: "You must do the 3 months salary" thing, which I think is bonkers, while others have said "shop together, find something reasonable, but beautiful."

From the sounds of it, a $4700 ring from Costco is reasonable. It's Costco, not Tiffany's (btw, does Costco give you bulk rings? :D Kidding...). I also factor in the type of girl my SO is - she barely wears any jewelry and she has always stated I should never buy it for her because it's a waste of money. I think she owns maybe 3 sets of earrings and 1 necklace, tops.

So for me, knowing that she will never ask for jewelry in the future, if she saw a ring, and said: "This is what I want", and it was reasonable, I'd go for it, knowing it would probably be the only piece of jewelry I would ever buy her. And so, yeah, I'd drop the $4700 because I'd want to get it right.

Daleth

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #77 on: July 29, 2016, 08:35:17 AM »
I just don't see a one-time extravagant purchase of a ring to be that big of deal for dual income earners who make a decent income.

The problem is they are not a dual income couple.  She has made it clear she will not contribute towards the ring.  He is still in school and his 6 figure salary is 1-2 years away from becoming a reality.

Dude, they're 24 and already have $100k in retirement accounts, and next year he is going to earn $40k in a single summer being a summer associate in a huge law firm. They're fine. And she's happy with a ring from Costco that costs less than half what a similar ring would cost elsewhere. This is just not a big deal.

bacchi

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #78 on: July 29, 2016, 08:47:26 AM »
Why can't it ever be happy husband happy life??????

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Happy spouse, happy house.

The original saying is telling, of course, in a gender politics way.

tweezers

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #79 on: July 29, 2016, 08:48:52 AM »
I just don't see a one-time extravagant purchase of a ring to be that big of deal for dual income earners who make a decent income.

The problem is they are not a dual income couple.  She has made it clear she will not contribute towards the ring.  He is still in school and his 6 figure salary is 1-2 years away from becoming a reality.

Dude, they're 24 and already have $100k in retirement accounts, and next year he is going to earn $40k in a single summer being a summer associate in a huge law firm. They're fine. And she's happy with a ring from Costco that costs less than half what a similar ring would cost elsewhere. This is just not a big deal.

+1000

justajane

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #80 on: July 29, 2016, 08:51:58 AM »
I just don't see a one-time extravagant purchase of a ring to be that big of deal for dual income earners who make a decent income.

The problem is they are not a dual income couple.  She has made it clear she will not contribute towards the ring.  He is still in school and his 6 figure salary is 1-2 years away from becoming a reality.

Dude, they're 24 and already have $100k in retirement accounts, and next year he is going to earn $40k in a single summer being a summer associate in a huge law firm. They're fine. And she's happy with a ring from Costco that costs less than half what a similar ring would cost elsewhere. This is just not a big deal.

+1000

Yeah, the 100K in retirement at twenty fucking four years old sold me too. After I saw that I was basically like, DO IT!

SeaEhm

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #81 on: July 29, 2016, 10:02:32 AM »
MMM Forum Response:  Find a woman who would be happy wearing paper bag that you found behind a local organize market.  Also, live behind Home Depot for inexpensive living.  You would be surprised with how much great stuff they throw away.  All of the cut pieces of lumber too small to resell is thrown out and you can forage that to build your house.  The flowers that are dying and marked off 50%?  When those don't sell, they throw those out too!  Use these to create a beautiful yard to your newly created house.   


We know nothing about your spending other than what you have accumulated through your retirements, but it seems that you guys are doing well.

Obviously, putting that $5k into an index fund is financially more literate so is living under a freeway overpass.   

$5k for a wedding set?  Go for it. 

mm1970

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #82 on: July 29, 2016, 11:12:21 AM »
Honestly, here are my thoughts:
- I'd go with moissanite, but that's because: 1. I used to work for the company that made the material, and I have some at home (discount, obv), and 2.  Blood diamonds (can you check whether the Costco diamonds are ethically sourced?)
- My engagement ring was...$2000?  $3000?  Purchased in 1995.  Wanna know how much I wear it?  2x a year.  (it's not massive, it's a 3/4 ct princess cut.  I just spent over a decade working in a cleanroom, and it was a pain to put a glove on over it, so I stopped wearing it).  I realize, however, that I am the exception.  Most of my girlfriends wear their rings.
- I think it's spendypants and consumerist.  But honestly, at your incomes, I wouldn't sweat it.  I was making about $50k back then and my future husband had recently quit work to start grad school.  $95k is a great salary at 24.  I'm 46, and ... I don't wanna talk about it. (just remind myself...you have exchanged location and flexibility for salary...ad nauseum).

mm1970

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #83 on: July 29, 2016, 11:13:29 AM »
Please post link of said ring.  :)

http://www.costco.com/Round-Brilliant-1.18-ctw-VS2-Clarity%2c-I-Color-Diamond-Platinum-Ring.product.11650596.html

In store it comes with a band that apparently adds ~$700 to the $3999 price tag above
ooh pretty.  I like shiny things.  I just don't wear them much.

mm1970

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #84 on: July 29, 2016, 11:20:26 AM »
I just don't see a one-time extravagant purchase of a ring to be that big of deal for dual income earners who make a decent income.

The problem is they are not a dual income couple.  She has made it clear she will not contribute towards the ring.  He is still in school and his 6 figure salary is 1-2 years away from becoming a reality.
Eh, I'm coming at this as someone who just celebrated her 20th wedding anniversary.

When my husband proposed, he'd just left the Navy and it was July.  Grad school started in September.  He was unemployed and earning NO income (so I guess he could have taken it to the extreme and not gotten me a ring?)  At that point, we'd been together 2.5 years.  The wedding date was very soon after set for the following summer.  Our *future* dual income was my Navy salary and his $13k per year grad student salary.  (He was in grad school for 7 years.)

So, to me, 1-2 years is kind of a drop in the bucket, compared to the 7 year plan. (as far as "future income")

bertrandhustle

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #85 on: July 29, 2016, 11:31:11 AM »
We ended up on www.idonowidont.com, and she actually ended up finding the ring set that we purchased. It was 8-months old, and the recently divorced girl was selling the set for about $1600. The original retail was around $4000. She absolutely loves this ring, and she also absolutely loves that we came to the decision together, agreed upon it, and spent a lot less than the initial suggestions.

I'm intrigued by this idea. How did/can you verify that what you buy is legit on this site?

Fuzz

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #86 on: July 29, 2016, 12:08:13 PM »
Relative to your assets, income and earning potential, it's nbd. She isn't asking for a lot in relative to your earning power. One thought is that as a summer associate, she may be your guest at a lot of social events where the women will wear $30K+ rings and want to ogle her ring. That may not matter to you, but it could matter to her. You are going into an extremely status conscious environment, so whatever you can get her that she'll feel proud of, is worth it, IMO.

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #87 on: July 29, 2016, 12:55:15 PM »
Buy the ring she wants.  It's the most important piece of jewelry she will have.  She is clearly not someone who doesn't care, so don't treat her as such. My engagement ring alone was more than that I love it every single day (for 12 years now). My sisters DH got her a ring and my sister had to tell him she didn't like and they went and exchanged it. She's still disappointed with her ring.  Who wants to be disappointed with their engagement/wedding ring?  It's not about being spoiled or greedy or falling for marketing.  Just because some people see it that way, doesn't mean everyone does and not does it make it true.  Do what makes HER happy, not people on this forum.  You're starting a life with HER.  I do realize if you were both making min wage at walmart, then maybe you have to scale down your expectations, but she knows what's realistically appropriate for you guys. 

zoltani

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #88 on: July 29, 2016, 12:57:58 PM »
I think it is strange how a lot of people are encouraging this guy to go ahead any buy it, when if it was anything other than an engagement ring people would be facepunching him.

It comes down to:
This guy wants to buy something that is 52% of his current cash savings.  He currently has more debt than his non-steady income.  He MIGHT make more in a couple of years time, but right now his student loans are more than he earns.  This item he buys will depreciate in value the moment he pays for it.  It is a bad financial move.

Exactly. Since it is an emotional decision tied to an institution that most people can relate to this gets a pass on the face punches.

Following the line of thinking about having to have a big ring for others to ogle at company events, next comes the fancy car, big house, expensive suits and other crap to show off you status and have folks ogle over. All of this is keeping up with the joneses wrapped up with emotions and justified because of the high lifestyle profession chosen. Hey, but at least this ring might go well with your golden handcuffs. 

yodella

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #89 on: July 29, 2016, 01:06:02 PM »
FWIW, I don't think it's a crime for even Mustachians to have one or two "must-haves" when it comes to weddings/engagements, things that just make you so, so happy.

For my wedding I wanted a very specific dress by an indie designer that cost ~$2400, but mentally I just couldn't justify it- I really, really loved it and even experimented with having a local seamstress help me copy it, but ultimately that fell through and I just couldn't spend the money. Instead I got a different dress by the same designer that was much less intricate and was "good enough," and cost a fraction of the price

Well, it's been almost four years and I STILL regret not getting the dress I wanted.
(here it is: https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-XCCQaVLf58g/Tr4DUTozR8I/AAAAAAAAGl8/Oto5aeu2AakET_u9yxXCN0MdPBaGySEXgCHM/s140-c/IMG_6089.jpg)

I know it's dumb, and irrational, but it's a wedding and will (hopefully) only happen once! A splurge on the PERFECT ring or dress or venue or whatever, if you are in a good financial situation, shouldn't be a source for guilt.

redbird

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #90 on: July 29, 2016, 01:09:08 PM »
Is this is what she wants, and she's perfect in every other way, then get her the ring.

I agree completely with this one. It's great to be frugal, and it sounds like she normally is. It's more than fine to allow yourself some luxuries. As long as you don't go overboard with other luxuries in the future that it makes you deep in debt, that is. :)

justajane

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #91 on: July 29, 2016, 01:11:57 PM »
I think it is strange how a lot of people are encouraging this guy to go ahead any buy it, when if it was anything other than an engagement ring people would be facepunching him.

It comes down to:
This guy wants to buy something that is 52% of his current cash savings.  He currently has more debt than his non-steady income.  He MIGHT make more in a couple of years time, but right now his student loans are more than he earns.  This item he buys will depreciate in value the moment he pays for it.  It is a bad financial move.

Exactly. Since it is an emotional decision tied to an institution that most people can relate to this gets a pass on the face punches.

Following the line of thinking about having to have a big ring for others to ogle at company events, next comes the fancy car, big house, expensive suits and other crap to show off you status and have folks ogle over. All of this is keeping up with the joneses wrapped up with emotions and justified because of the high lifestyle profession chosen. Hey, but at least this ring might go well with your golden handcuffs.

Your argument is too slippery slope-like for a couple who has 100K in retirement by age 24. Seriously, I would have killed to have that much financial know-how by that age. Did you see that his loans are 50K for a degree that could earn him annually over three times that? I would say that is a pretty good ROI. Plus, his future wife makes 90K by 24. Holy shit.

zoltani

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #92 on: July 29, 2016, 01:23:57 PM »
Nothing in the OP tells me the future wife is frugal, everyone seems to be making that assumption. Are you basing that off of retirement accounts vs salary?

Here is how I see it: OP will do whatever he wants in the end. People do not come post questions like this to have their minds changed. They want confirmation of their decisions.

My real honest suggestion: Propose with a piece of string ;)


AlwaysLearningToSave

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #93 on: July 29, 2016, 01:29:08 PM »
Nothing in the OP tells me the future wife is frugal, everyone seems to be making that assumption. Are you basing that off of retirement accounts vs salary?

No.  We are basing it off of OP's original post, which includes this quote:

Quote
She is frugal, and has around $50k in retirement accounts, and <$10k in very low interest student debt.

Of course there is always a question of degree of frugality, but we are taking OP at his word and reasoning that, since OP is on this forum, he has a basic understanding of what people on this forum consider to be "frugal." 

sis

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #94 on: July 29, 2016, 01:29:55 PM »
I think it is strange how a lot of people are encouraging this guy to go ahead any buy it, when if it was anything other than an engagement ring people would be facepunching him.

It comes down to:
This guy wants to buy something that is 52% of his current cash savings.  He currently has more debt than his non-steady income.  He MIGHT make more in a couple of years time, but right now his student loans are more than he earns.  This item he buys will depreciate in value the moment he pays for it.  It is a bad financial move.

Exactly. Since it is an emotional decision tied to an institution that most people can relate to this gets a pass on the face punches.

Following the line of thinking about having to have a big ring for others to ogle at company events, next comes the fancy car, big house, expensive suits and other crap to show off you status and have folks ogle over. All of this is keeping up with the joneses wrapped up with emotions and justified because of the high lifestyle profession chosen. Hey, but at least this ring might go well with your golden handcuffs.

Yes 100% this!  My husband works big law and a lot of people try to keep up with appearances.  He has some coworkers in his year earning 260k base + 70k bonus who basically live paycheck to paycheck.  It is insane.  I feel like you really need to fight the lifestyle creep.  "Oh of course, I work in big law, I need at least a 2 bedroom on the upper east side"  "I work big law, I can drop $100+ per night on drinks" "I NEED a housekeeper for the apartment that I'm never home at because I work long hours and go out all the time"  "I NEED a fancy kitchen (even though I never cook)"  The one that really gets me is people who own personal cars in Manhattan - really?  Anyway, as the wife of a big law associate, I really don't care what people think about my $60 wedding band or my clothes that I buy on clearance.  Luckily DH and I are mostly on the same page as far as frugality.  I probably go to maybe 1 or 2 work functions with him per year -- they don't happen all the time.  I don't think that anyone has judged me for my lack of a fancy ring, and if they did I think that says a whole lot more about them than about me.

You should really have a discussion about your financial expectations/budgeting moving forward.  These financial conversations need to take place before marriage (and ideally before engagement).

justajane

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #95 on: July 29, 2016, 01:37:53 PM »
Nothing in the OP tells me the future wife is frugal, everyone seems to be making that assumption. Are you basing that off of retirement accounts vs salary?

Here is how I see it: OP will do whatever he wants in the end. People do not come post questions like this to have their minds changed. They want confirmation of their decisions.

My real honest suggestion: Propose with a piece of string ;)

Haha. Or a cracker jack box ring. 

But here's the thing: if his wife isn't frugal, buying or not buying the ring really doesn't matter much, does it? There would be larger problems not outlined here. Tell me how not buying the ring that a woman really wants is going to make things better long term for them if she isn't frugal. It's not like if she isn't frugal, him giving her a piece of string is going to lead her to scratch her head and say, "Huh. I guess you're right honey. What have I been thinking all these years? I will embrace frugality and the simpler life now."

He hasn't given any indication that she's a spendthrift or that this is a sign of a larger problem. Honestly? Based on the circles they seem to be in, this is a frugal ring.

I don't get it at all. Jewelry matters to me none. Less than none. But, sorry, I just can't find the outrage or embrace the slippery slope on this one.

Megma

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #96 on: July 29, 2016, 01:49:30 PM »
You've probably had more opinions on this then you want but I'm going to chime in. You are in a good place financially, the reason you don't fritter away money on crap is so you have some when you either A) need something or B) really want something, have thought about it and shopped around for a good deal on it.

If that is the use of $4700 that will make your future wife the most happy, buy her the damn ring. If not, use it for something else like a great photographer, fabulous wedding dress, 3 week honeymoon, ect, etc. You can't have all of these things, so you have to choose which is the most important to you and her. If it's the ring that she will wear for hopefully a really long time or the honeymoon you will look back on for years, or looking at your bank balance and seeing an extra 5k - act accordingly.

Personally, I think the ring is gorgeous! I recently got engaged ($400 ring, similar style with non-diamond center stone) and decided I'd rather take a fabulous honeymoon trip than have a fancier ring. But that is me, it's a personal choice. By all means don't feel any "Mustache guilt" for buying a 5k ring.

Inaya

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #97 on: July 29, 2016, 01:52:47 PM »
Haha. Or a cracker jack box ring. 


Nowadays you only get stickers or temporary tattoos from Cracker Jack. Nevermind, I just looked--you don't even get that anymore. Just a digital code that'll let you "bring the ballpark to life on your mobile device." Lame. http://www.today.com/food/cracker-jack-replacing-toy-prizes-inside-digital-codes-t87811


Maybe propose with an onion ring?

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Choices

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Re: Is $4700 wedding ring set too much?
« Reply #99 on: July 29, 2016, 02:13:14 PM »
I'm usually frugal and not sentimental. That said, I am very glad that we got engaged before we found MMM.

My DH picked out the ring on his own and was very generous. It's perfect. Every time I look at it I smile, and it's the only jewelry I wear besides cheap earrings. It will last a lifetime and even though it's not what we would decide if we were to buy one today, I wouldn't change it for the world.

This shouldn't matter, but it does: while my coworkers have Porches and McMansions and we choose to live simply, I do love that my ring is just as pretty (more so, IMHO) than theirs.