Surprise Engagement: How To Secure Their Ring Size Without Them Knowing


While the modern bride or groom may be very involved in the engagement process together, some people still want a total surprise proposal. One of the most difficult parts of a secret proposal, however, is getting an idea of your partner’s ring size before popping the question.

To avoid giving your engagement secret away, I have compiled some suggestions on how you can secure your partner’s ring size without them knowing.

The first and most effective method is to bring in an existing ring your partner frequently wears. If you know what finger they wear it on, I can easily estimate the right size based on the variation in finger sizes. Generally, your partner’s dominate hand will be a size larger (which is only about 1mm). So if your partner is right handed and wears the ring on their right ring finger, the engagement ring (traditionally for the left hand) should be one size smaller.

If you can’t take a ring from your partner discreetly, another way to determine ring size is to take a very sharp pencil and trace the inside circumference of the ring they wear to get an idea of the diameter, or to place the ring on a ruler and take a photo. Then bring that drawing or photo to your jeweller to get it measured. If your partner doesn’t have any rings you can use, I can usually gauge their finger size by looking at photos of their hands.

Random variables such as knuckle size and weather conditions may affect ring size too. You want a ring that will squeeze over the knuckle, but won’t swing around once on the finger. Most fingers also swell in the summer and shrink in the winter. If your partner is used to wearing jewellery then they’ll be aware of these factors. If not, it’s my job to help you find a happy medium and find a ring that will be a fraction snug on hotter days and a fraction loose on the colder ones. Pictures of your partner’s hands are also helpful with these kinds of decisions.

If you’re looking for extra help, your partner’s friends may be able to sneak the topic of ring size into a conversation without raising the alarm bells. Or have them bring them into the boutique and try on rings for fun – but make sure it’s someone who can get away with this sneaky behaviour and won’t spill the secret!

There’s always a risk the finger size won’t be exact. More often than not, the ring is about a half size too big or too small. However, as long as the band doesn’t have diamonds or engravings all the way around, it’s very simple to resize once you’ve proposed and your partner will have their dream ring back to show off to all their family and friends within a few working days.

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