Why I was happy my fiancé didn't purchase me an engagement ring
I never knew what kind of engagement ring I wanted.
That was mostly because I just didn't know anything about weddings, so I had just never pictured what kind of sparkle I'd want to see on my left hand for the rest of my life.
But that all ended up changing when my fiancé, Sam, proposed last year.
The moment itself was a whirlwind of tears, surprise, a lot of 'wait, what?!' and phone calls home - after saying 'yes', of course.
When he got down on one knee, though, and asked me to marry him, he wasn't holding out my engagement ring.
Instead, he had picked out a promise ring to propose with - and told me that we would be going to pick out the ring together.
Which, for us, was the best decision he could've made. Even though I never actually asked him why he had chosen that way.
So, almost six months (and two rings) later, I decided it was time I got clued in on why he had wanted us to make the choice together.
He told me:
"A friend had done it a little while earlier - and I thought, that's a lovely way of doing it.
"I didn't want to f**k up picking [it] or with the size. And I thought, since you're the one wearing it, it'd be good for you to be there [when I got it] and have input into it."
After the proposal, we weren't actually able to head into a shop to start browsing for about two weeks.
This meant that I was researching for weeks. To the point where I'm pretty sure Sam was sick of me going 'but what about this one?', 'wait, wait, no - this is definitely the one.'
Neither of those ones were, of course, 'the one'. Nor were the other dozen or so I fell for.
The ring we ended up picking was one that he had originally pointed out, but I wasn't entirely convinced - just because it was gold, which I had never really thought of for a ring.
I was totally, and happily, wrong about it.
It was the first - and only - engagement ring I had actually tried on, and from the moment it was slipped onto my finger, it became 'the one'.
Looking back on it, I think that us going in to purchase the ring together was the best thing we could've done.
Being there when we picked out the ring kind of helped me understand (to a small degree) how he had felt the first time stepping into the shop.
The nerves, the excitement, the side of the engagement that the propose-ee doesn't often get to experience.
And it means so much more to me that we picked it together since it's the start of a new - and life-changing - chapter for us.
Plus, it took some of the 'oh god, what if I pick the wrong ring/wrong size' nerves away from him - a nice bonus.
I recently spoke to Chupi Sweetman, the jewellery designer behind my promise ring and engagement ring, about promise rings - and how they have become a growing trend in Ireland.
Over the last two years, she explained that there has been an increase in the number of couples coming in to pick the ring together.
In fact, it's become more of an even split as to whether or not couples are making the big purchase together.
"Promise rings are a lovely trend.
"I think there's always that terror of 'what if I get the wrong ring?' beforehand.
"We've definitely been seeing more people coming in to choose [the ring] together, both before and after [the proposal itself]; people aren't necessarily waiting for the proposal anymore.
"We have a lot of couples who come in together to get ideas or show their partner rings.
"Then one will kind of tell the other 'go away, come back later, you're not allowed to be here' so they can get the ring."
The designer's first engagement ring collection was launched two years ago, after she was inspired by her own ring.
"My own started the whole [engagement ring] journey for me, because it was so precious and unique - unlike anything I had ever seen.
"It was the first time in my life owning an heirloom. I remember thinking, 'Hopefully, this will one day be my daughter's ring; granddaughter's ring; great granddaughter's ring'.
"What a privilege its would be to pass something like that down.
"We all love the idea of things that are truly ours, something unique and precious.
"I love making things that make people happy, I love magic - I wanted to pass on that feeling to others."
Keeley and Sam are saying 'I do,' in May 2019. And with a year to go, this bride-to-be admits she's still learning the ropes. In the run-up to her Big Day, Keeley will be writing a weekly blog about all things wedding-related... from the start of planning, to walking down the aisle.