Jeweler: "It was burning a hole in his pocket!"

By Kate Hogan
May 11, 2011 02:00 PM

Jackson Lee/Splash News Online

All you need is love … but a dazzling ring sure doesn’t hurt. When Paul McCartney proposed to his girlfriend, New York businesswoman Nancy Shevell, he wanted a ring that was “very special, different and rare,” says celebrity jeweler Neil Lane, who worked with McCartney, 68, on picking out the perfect sparkler. “He was very excited and very serious about finding the right one because he wanted something truly exceptional.” McCartney’s choice? A rare 5-plus carat diamond art deco ring from Lane’s archival collection. Set in platinum with a flawless round, central diamond, the ring has strips of black onyx along the sides. “It has a beautiful vintage feel to it,” says Lane. “Very romantic, elegant and glamorous but with a bit of cool glitz and rock and roll.” As for how the proposal went over with Shevell, 51, Lane says, “They’re thrilled and totally in love.” Fun fact: “[McCartney] was walking around with the ring for weeks and he said it was burning a hole in his pocket!” Lane says. “But he was waiting to pop the question at the right moment. They’re truly happy together!” For all the details on the couple’s engagement, check out the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.Elizabeth Leonard