Welcome to our comprehensive guide on types of engagement rings, where we delve into the fascinating world of symbolising love and commitment. As experts in the field, we’re here to help you navigate through the various options and considerations when choosing the perfect engagement ring. Whether you’re a soon-to-be-engaged individual or someone seeking to learn more about these timeless symbols, this guide will provide you with valuable insights and expert advice.
Engagement rings are typically given as a symbol of commitment and love when proposing marriage. Every love story is unique, and when it comes to expressing that eternal commitment, nothing captures the essence quite like an engagement ring. These exquisite pieces of jewellery are more than just sparkling stones and precious metals; they symbolise love, unity, and the promise of a lifelong journey together.
What are the different parts of an engagement ring to consider?
A gemstone is a precious or semi-precious stone that is used as the centre stone or accent stones in the ring. Gemstones come in a wide variety of colours and types, including diamonds, sapphires, emeralds, rubies, and more. Each gemstone possesses unique characteristics, such as colour, clarity, cut, and carat weight, which contribute to its overall beauty and value. Gemstones are chosen for their aesthetic appeal, symbolic meanings, and personal preferences, allowing individuals to create customised and meaningful engagement ring designs.
An alloy, in the context of engagement rings, refers to a metal mixture created by combining two or more metals. Pure metals, such as gold or platinum, are often too soft or malleable to be used alone in jewellery settings. Therefore, alloys are created to enhance the strength, durability, and workability of the metal.
The cut refers to how well the diamond has been shaped and faceted to reflect light. Popular cuts for engagement rings include round brilliant, princess cut engagement rings (square), cushion cut engagement rings (pillow-shaped), oval, pear-shaped engagement rings, marquise (boat-shaped), emerald cut engagement rings (rectangular with step-like facets).
The colour grading of engagement rings can vary from colourless diamonds, graded on a scale from D to Z, to vibrant gemstones like sapphires and emeralds that offer a spectrum of captivating hues. Generally speaking, the less colour in a diamond’s body hue results in higher value.
Clarity measures the presence of any internal flaws called inclusions or external blemishes on a diamond. Clarity grades range from Flawless (no imperfections visible under 10x magnification) to Included (imperfections visible to the naked eye). Diamonds with higher clarity grades have fewer imperfections, which can impact their brilliance.
Carat weight is one of the key factors that contribute to the overall appearance and value of a diamond in an engagement ring. Understanding carat weight can help you make an informed decision when selecting the perfect ring.
A ring setting refers to the metal framework that holds a gemstone or multiple gemstones in place. It plays a vital role in enhancing the overall appearance and security of a ring. Ring settings come in a variety of styles and designs, ranging from classic solitaire settings to intricate halo or vintage-inspired settings. The choice of ring setting depends on personal taste, the type of gemstone being used, and the desired aesthetic.
Claw Setting & Solitaire Setting
The prong setting is a classic and widely used ring setting that holds a gemstone in place using small metal claws or prongs. This setting allows maximum light to enter the stone, enhancing its brilliance. A solitaire setting is a specific type of prong setting where a single gemstone is prominently showcased, usually in a simple and elegant design. It emphasises the beauty and simplicity of the centre stone, making it a timeless choice.
The Tiffany Setting
The Tiffany Setting is a renowned and iconic ring setting introduced by Tiffany & Co. in 1886. It features a six-prong setting that raises the diamond above the band, allowing maximum light to refract through the stone and create the fire and brilliance diamond is known for. This setting revolutionised the engagement ring industry and set the standard for modern engagement ring designs.
A bezel setting encircles the gemstone with a metal rim, holding it securely in place. This setting offers excellent protection to the gemstone and gives a sleek and contemporary look. It is particularly popular for more active individuals or those who prefer a minimalist design.
In a tension setting, the gemstone is held in place by the pressure of the metal band, creating the illusion of the stone floating. This setting requires precise craftsmanship and is known for its modern and unique appearance, highlighting the beauty of the gemstone without any visible metal support.
Tension Style Setting
Similar to the tension setting, the tension style setting uses metal bands to hold the gemstone in place, creating a tension-like effect. It combines the sleekness of the tension setting with the added security of metal support, ensuring the stone remains firmly in place.
The channel setting features a row of gemstones set closely together within a channel-like groove in the metal band. The stones are held in place by the metal walls on either side, creating a seamless and continuous line of sparkle. This setting is commonly used for wedding bands or as accents to complement a central gemstone.
The pavé setting involves placing small gemstones closely together and setting them with small claws or beads, giving the appearance of a paved surface. This setting creates a dazzling effect, as the numerous gemstones reflect light and create a continuous shimmering surface.
A cathedral setting uses arches or raised metal supports on either side of the gemstone to elevate it above the band. This setting resembles the vaulted ceilings of cathedrals, hence its name. The elevated position adds elegance and prominence to the centre stone.
In a bar setting, the gemstones are secured between metal bars that run perpendicular to the band. The bars hold the stones in place, creating a clean and modern look. This setting is often used for gemstones that have flat edges.
Flush setting, also known as gypsy or hammer setting, involves placing gemstones directly into a channel or hole in the metal band, so they sit flush with the surface. The stones are then secured in place by hammering the metal edges around them. This setting offers a sleek and contemporary appearance while providing excellent protection for the gemstones.
An antique or vintage setting refers to ring settings that are inspired by or replicated from designs popular in a particular era. These settings often incorporate intricate filigree work, milgrain detailing, or unique metalwork, giving the ring a timeless and romantic feel.
In a cluster setting, several smaller gemstones are arranged closely together to create the illusion of a larger, more prominent stone. The gemstones are often held in place by prongs or bezels, forming a cluster of sparkle and adding a dynamic and eye-catching element to the ring.
An eternity band features a continuous line of gemstones encircling the entire band. The gemstones are typically small and set using a prong, channel, or pavé setting. The eternity band symbolises everlasting love and is often used as a wedding or anniversary ring.
The shank or split-shank setting refers to the part of the ring that encircles the finger. A split-shank setting features a band that divides into two or more strands as it reaches the centre stone, creating an elegant and open design. This setting adds a unique and contemporary touch to the ring.
An infinity setting incorporates the infinity symbol (∞) into the design of the ring. The symbol is usually crafted using metalwork or gemstones, representing eternal love and infinite connection. This setting is popular for both engagement and anniversary rings.
What kinds of engagement rings are available?
When it comes to engagement rings, there is a dazzling array of options to choose from, each with its own unique charm and significance. Let’s delve into the world of different types of engagement rings, where timeless elegance and individual style converge.
Diamond engagement rings
Diamonds have long been synonymous with engagement rings, exuding a timeless and breathtaking allure. With their exceptional brilliance and durability, diamond engagement rings symbolise eternal love and commitment. From the classic solitaire to intricate diamond settings, explore the exquisite beauty and endless possibilities that diamond engagement rings offer.
Gemstone engagement rings
For those seeking a burst of colour and personalization, gemstone engagement rings are a captivating choice. From sapphires that evoke romance and wisdom to vibrant emeralds symbolising rebirth and prosperity, gemstones add a touch of individuality and meaning to the ring. Discover the captivating world of gemstone engagement rings and find the perfect stone to express your love.
Vintage engagement rings
Vintage engagement rings exude a sense of timeless elegance and intricate craftsmanship. With their exquisite detailing and romantic charm, these rings harken back to eras of glamour and sophistication. Whether you prefer the Art Deco geometric designs or the romantic filigree of the Victorian era, vintage engagement rings carry a sense of history and uniqueness that is truly enchanting.
Halo engagement rings
Halo engagement rings have gained popularity for their captivating beauty and ability to make the centre stone appear larger and more brilliant. Featuring a circle of smaller diamonds or gemstones surrounding the centre stone, halo rings create a mesmerising halo effect that enhances the ring’s overall sparkle and presence. Experience the allure of halo engagement rings and discover a design that combines classic elegance with modern glamour.
Solitaire engagement rings
A true symbol of simplicity and sophistication, solitaire engagement rings showcase the timeless beauty of a single stunning centre stone. With its minimalist design, the solitaire ring allows the diamond or gemstone to take centre stage, emphasising its natural brilliance and elegance. Delve into the world of solitaire engagement rings and embrace the beauty of understated elegance.
Three stone engagement rings
Representing the past, present, and future, three stone engagement rings are rich in symbolism and meaning. The three stones, often diamonds or gemstones, beautifully intertwine to create a captivating representation of a couple’s journey together. Discover the significance and breathtaking designs of three-stone engagement rings, where each stone holds a unique significance in celebrating your love story.
Custom engagement rings
For those seeking a truly one-of-a-kind expression of love, custom engagement rings offer endless possibilities. Collaborate with expert jewellers to bring your vision to life, creating a ring that reflects your unique story, style, and sentiment. From choosing the perfect gemstone to designing intricate details, embark on a personalised journey to create a cherished heirloom that will be treasured for generations.
Coloured diamond engagement rings
In a world beyond the traditional white diamond, coloured diamond engagement rings captivate with their rare beauty and extraordinary hues. From fancy yellow and pink diamonds to mesmerising blue and green diamonds, these exceptional gems add a vibrant and striking touch to an engagement ring. Explore the captivating world of coloured diamond engagement rings and find a hue that resonates with your individuality.
Unique engagement rings
For those who crave something extraordinary and unconventional, unique engagement rings offer a world of creativity and self-expression. From alternative metal bands to unconventional stone shapes and artistic designs, unique rings stand out with their distinctive flair. Embrace the extraordinary and discover a ring that perfectly embodies your individuality and love story.
How do I choose the right engagement ring?
Choosing the right engagement ring is an exciting and personal decision. Here are some essential factors to consider when selecting the perfect ring:
Determine your budget range for the engagement ring. This will help you narrow down your options and focus on designs within your price range. Remember, the value of an engagement ring is not solely based on its cost but also its sentimental value.
Consider your partner’s personal style and preferences. Take note of the type of jewellery they typically wear, whether they lean towards classic and timeless designs or prefer more modern and unique styles. Observing their fashion choices can provide valuable insights into the kind of engagement ring they would love. You can also consider adding a wedding band to complement your chosen engagement ring.
Knowing your partner’s ring size is crucial to ensure a perfect fit. You can discreetly borrow one of their rings or seek assistance from close friends or family members to obtain an accurate measurement. Alternatively, many jewellers offer resizing services if needed.
Gemstone or diamond preference
Decide whether you want to opt for a traditional diamond engagement ring or explore alternative gemstones. If considering gemstones, research the meanings and symbolism associated with each stone to find one that resonates with your partner’s personality and values.
Quality and Certification
Pay attention to the quality and certification of the engagement ring. If choosing a diamond, look for a grading report from a reputable gemological laboratory such as the GIA (Gemological Institute of America) or AGS (American Gem Society). This report provides information about the diamond’s 4Cs: carat weight, cut, colour, and clarity. For gemstones, examine the quality factors specific to each stone type.
Consider the metal for the engagement ring band. Options include gold (yellow, white, or rose), platinum, or alternative metals like titanium or palladium. The metal choice should align with your partner’s style, durability preferences, and any potential metal allergies.
Setting and design
Explore different ring settings and designs. Classic options include solitaire, halo, three-stone, or vintage-inspired designs. Look for settings that complement the chosen gemstone or diamond while reflecting your partner’s aesthetic preferences.
Think about your partner’s lifestyle and daily activities. If they have an active lifestyle or work with their hands, a more durable and low-profile setting may be suitable. Consider the durability and maintenance requirements of the chosen metal and gemstone to ensure the ring can withstand everyday wear.
Purchase the engagement ring from a reputable and trustworthy jeweller. Look for established jewellers with positive reviews, certifications, and a wide selection of high-quality rings. A reliable jeweller will provide guidance, expertise, and ensure a smooth purchasing experience.
Remember, choosing the right engagement ring is about finding a ring that symbolises your love and captures your partner’s unique style and personality. Take your time, conduct thorough research, and enjoy the process of selecting a ring that will forever represent the start of your beautiful journey together.
Where can I buy an engagement ring?
At Holdsworth Bros. Jewellers, we provide high-quality craftsmanship. Each ring is meticulously crafted by our skilled artisans using the finest materials to ensure durability and longevity. Contact us so we can help you find the ideal engagement ring for your perfect proposal.