You've seen the ring -- now hear how fiancé Jef Holm selected it
Credit: ABC; Inset: Courtesy Neil Lane

When jeweler Neil Lane landed in Curacao for The Bachelorette finale, he carried with him six handmade engagement rings.

“All of them had elements that were inspired by Emily,” Lane tells PEOPLE exclusively. “I had met with her a number of months ago just to get a sense of her style, of her personality. I designed six rings with Emily in mind but you know what? I really concentrated on this one particular ring and I hoped Jef would see it too.”

Turns out, Holm did just that, and on Sunday night’s finale, the Utah-based entrepreneur proposed with Lane’s favorite, a 3.5-carat emerald-cut handmade sparkler accented with 87 smaller round-cut diamonds.

“As soon as Jef saw the ring, he knew it was the right one,” says the celebrity jeweler. “He really understood her style. She’s very sophisticated, very beautiful, elegant and classic and the emerald-cut diamond has those elements. She exudes grace and style, with an elegance that reminded me of high society of the 1920s when that stone was very fashionable.”

That said, Holm didn’t make his decision hastily — he briefly considered a ring that had pink gold in it because, says Lane, “He knew she liked pink” — and took the ring selection very seriously.

“Jef really put a lot of energy into it and he was very sincere and excited during the whole process,” says Lane, who has little doubt Maynard and Holm will enjoy a happy ending. “The guy was smitten and really in love. He was very sweet about the whole thing. I felt he was very genuine and was really looking forward to this journey with Emily. I’m so happy for them!”

–Elizabeth Leonard