Diamond aren't the only sparkler.

If, like me, you think an engagement ring should be an expression of individuality, then you’ll likely opt for a handcrafted piece. It’s not always easy to know where to start, so we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite jewelers for you to peruse.

For the record, going handmade isn’t necessarily a more expensive option. You pay for a brand with mainstream jewellers and you’re limited to their choice of stones and metals. Working with a jeweller opens up a world of lesser-known, possibly less expensive materials, like black or icy diamonds, precious stones and moissanite. More importantly, you’ll know exactly where those materials have come so you can make an informed, ethical choice.

A coloured gemstone – cut, sliced or raw – can be a stunning alternative if diamonds aren’t your (or your partner’s) best friend. Remember though, this will hopefully be worn til death do you part, so it should be a quality piece that’s comfortable to wear and will stand the test of time.

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