The Ultimate Guide to Engagement Ring Settings

Engagement rings are every woman’s most cherished piece of jewelry. All engagement rings beautiful – there is no doubt about that. However, unless you have bought one before or are in the business, the process that choosing a ring entails can be overwhelming. From selecting a perfect stone to matching it with a suitable setting, purchasing engagement rings is no easy task. Many shoppers aren’t even aware how complicated it can be to choose the center stone, let alone what goes into choosing its setting. There are many different diamond shapes, and every shape requires a specific type of setting. In order to make certain that you choose the right setting for your specific diamond, here are a few tips and tricks that will leave you more than satisfied with the beauty of your ring.

 

cy Yellow Diamond Rings, and Side Views

Fancy Yellow Diamond Rings, and Side Views

 

Round Diamonds

 

Round brilliant diamonds are the most popular diamond because of their gorgeous brilliance, the shine of the diamond. The round shape and its many facets allow the diamond to give off an unforgettable and unbelievable sparkle. When it comes to settings, there are many to choose from. For a prong setting, this shape requires at least four prongs, but you can add more if you’d like. Four prongs give more of a square look while six provides a rounder appearance. You can also settle for five prongs, which gives a different, geometric look. You have the option of adding side stones, or going with a diamond-studded band. Color diamonds are not generally round, as this shape does not retain color like other shapes of colored diamonds such as cushion and radiant.

 

In addition to prongs and metal types, there are several other options when it comes to settings for round diamonds. The other main setting type aside from prong settings is the bezel style, which has the diamond set into a bezel rather than set up high by prongs. This style is more suitable for those with active lifestyles who don’t want their diamonds getting snagged on clothing and other things. Additional styles for rounds include tension settings, melee settings, and pave settings. Round diamonds are used equally as often as accents to a main diamond as they are as the shape of a main diamond. They are also often the stones that are used in pave decorations.


 

 

3.06 ct Fancy Light Yellow Brown Round Brilliant Halo Ring

3.06 ct Fancy Light Yellow Brown Round Brilliant Halo Ring

1.41 ct Fancy Brown Diamond 3 Stone Ring

 

1.41 ct Fancy Brown Diamond 3 Stone Ring

 

Pear-Shaped Diamonds


The pear shape is also less common for color diamonds but is nevertheless a popular choice as its teardrop shape is quite appealing. Such diamonds require six prongs when using a prong setting since each of its sides, both the thinner and the wider, need to be held and protected. Pear-shaped diamonds can also be given bezel, tension, melee, and pave settings, though prong and tension settings will show off the diamond’s shape the best.

1.31 ct Fancy Grayish Greenish Yellow Pear Shaped Diamond Ring

1.31 ct Fancy Grayish Greenish Yellow Pear Shaped Diamond Ring

 

Princess Cut and Heart Shaped Diamonds


The princess cut is a very popular shape for colorless diamonds, but both the princess cut and heart shapes are commonly found in colored diamonds as well. Both diamonds shapes look beautiful as solitaires, on an eternity band, with halos, and with side stones. A princess cut stone on an eternity band is a very popular engagement ring style. The heart shape with a halo is another very popular style.

 1.54 ct Fancy Intense Yellow Diamond Heart Halo Ring

1.54 ct Fancy Intense Yellow Diamond Heart Halo Ring

 

0.85 ct Fancy Yellow VS1 Princess Cut Diamond Ring with Trilliant Cut Sidestones

0.85 ct Fancy Yellow VS1 Princess Cut Diamond Ring with Trilliant Cut Sidestones

 

Cushion and Radiant Diamond Rings

 

The most common cuts of colored diamonds are the cushion and radiant shapes. The reason for this is that these cuts enhance the color of the diamond the most. When choosing a stone in one of these shapes, you will be able to best enhance it with many of the settings that are available. Side stones in emerald or trilliant shapes would be particularly beautiful for diamonds of these shapes, although they also commonly appear as solitaires.

 

2.85 ct Fancy Yellow Cushion Cut Diamond Pave Side Stone Ring

2.85 ct Fancy Yellow Cushion Cut Diamond Pave Side Stone Ring

 4.41 ct Fancy Vivid Yellow Radiant Diamond Ring

4.41 ct Fancy Vivid Yellow Radiant Diamond Ring

 

Solitaire Ring Settings

 

Large stones are best off set as solitaire stones, or perhaps with side stones or a diamond-studded band. Even when stones are particularly large, setting a stone alone on a band of appropriate width gives a look of classic elegance and timeless grace. There is even a trend of starting out with a solitaire ring and resetting it with a more elaborate setting in honor of a later occasion.

 

Radiant-Shaped Yellow Diamond Set in Yellow Gold Solitaire Setting

Radiant-Shaped Yellow Diamond Set in Yellow Gold Solitaire Setting

 

Halo Settings


If a stone is on the smaller side, it may be wiser to go with a halo-style setting. Many people feel that the halo setting gives an illusion of a larger diamond. This type of setting has the main stone surrounded by smaller diamonds, like a halo. The smaller diamonds can be the same color as the main stone, or a contrasting color. For example, the middle stone could be a pink diamond and the surrounding stones can be colorless. It can also work the other way around with a colorless center and a pink halo. Some stones are even accented by a double halo, a double surrounding of diamonds around the center stone. This looks best on stones of medium sizes, and not the smaller ones. There is even a triple halo, for those who desire such opulence in their ring.

 

5.41 ct Fancy Light Yellow Radiant Diamond Double Halo Ring

5.41 ct Fancy Light Yellow Radiant Diamond Double Halo Ring

 

0.52 ct Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink Radiant Diamond Double Loop Ring

0.52 ct Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink Radiant Diamond Double Loop Ring

 

Three-Stone Ring Settings

 

Another popular setting is the three-stone ring setting. This setting is suitable for those with three main stones, as opposed to one. Such settings display all three stones in an equal fashion. If one is larger than the other two, it can be set in the middle. Otherwise, the three diamonds are set side by side to create a row of large, beautiful diamonds. They can each have a halo of diamonds around them or be left as they are. Another option is to use one colorless diamond and two color diamonds or two colorless diamonds and one color diamond for a mixed and creative three-stone look. A common style is to set two baguette shaped diamonds as the side stones to the center diamond.


 

 Round Fancy Yellowish Brown and Colorless Three Stone Ring

Round Fancy Yellowish Brown and Colorless Three Stone Ring

 

 0.53ct Radiant cut Argyle Fancy Red VS1 diamond and two Fancy Deep Blue-Green diamonds, a 0.16ct and a 0.18ct, and a 0.38 ct tw Halo and set in Platinum and Rose gold

 

0.53ct Radiant cut Argyle Fancy Red VS1 diamond and two Fancy Deep Blue-Green diamonds, a 0.16ct and a 0.18ct, and a 0.38 ct tw Halo and set in Platinum and Rose gold

 

Diamond Bands

 

Many rings feature diamonds along the band of the ring, known as the eternity style. This is done to give the ring extra beauty and sparkle beyond the main diamonds and the other diamonds that may be accompanying it. However, the important point to remember when choosing this is that the diamonds may go down part of the band, or completely around. While the stones in a complete circle may look very beautiful, it lends a certain finality to the size of your ring. Whether your own finger size expands or shrinks, or a future recipient has an alternative ring size to yours, setting diamonds all the way around the ring will ensure that it stays that size. It is possible to resize the ring, but it will require taking off and resetting the band’s stones, which can get complicated. If the diamonds do not extend entire length of the band, then the metal can be manipulated much more easily when being resized. Another reason that some people choose not to put diamonds all the way around is when they lead a more active lifestyle, and they are afraid of causing harm to the stones that would be on the underside of their band.


Some people also choose a band with a split shank, meaning that the band around the center stone is actually split into two sideways V-shapes. While this is very beautiful, it does not lend itself to being worn comfortably on the same finger as a wedding band, unless the wedding band is custom made to fit around the engagement ring, which is often done.


 

 

1.51 ct Fancy Yellow Radiant Cut Halo Diamond Ring

1.51 ct Fancy Yellow Radiant Cut Halo Diamond Ring

0.46 ct Fancy Intense Pink Diamond Half Eternity Platinum Wedding Band

 

 

0.46 ct Fancy Intense Pink Diamond Half Eternity Platinum Wedding Band

 

Platinum, White Gold, Yellow Gold, Rose Gold

 

The most basic thing that you will have to determine, before the diamonds and settings come into play, is whether you prefer your setting to be in a more subtle platinum or white gold, or a more vibrant gold like yellow or rose gold. If you prefer one over another, it may affect your choice of diamond color. Certain colors of diamond should be placed upon particular metals. For instance, yellow diamonds should be placed on yellow gold, and pink diamonds should be mounted upon rose-gold settings. It is also possible to set the diamond itself in a colored metal so as to ensure the most beautiful enhancement of the diamond’s color, but keep the metal on the band of the diamond white gold, for example. You may prefer a wider or narrower band depending on whether your hand is more delicate or sturdier, and whether your lifestyle is more active or sedentary. Some people even prefer a dual shank band, for its beauty or even for its strength. Often, women keep the metal on their engagement and wedding bands matching when they plan on wearing them on the same finger, or when they prefer it that way. However, many people also like to exhibit a variety of looks and will wear a different colored wedding band from their engagement ring!

 

 

 

3.57 ct Light Pink Heart Shaped Diamond and Double Heart Shaped Halo Rose Gold Ring

3.57 ct Light Pink Heart Shaped Diamond and Double Heart Shaped Halo Rose Gold Ring

 

1.00 Carat Fancy Intense Yellow Radiant Diamond Pave Side Stone White Gold Ring With Yellow Gold Setting

1.00 Carat Fancy Intense Yellow Radiant Diamond Pave Side Stone White Gold Ring With Yellow Gold Setting

 

A Note About Custom Wedding Bands

 

A guide to engagement settings is only complete when it touches on the wedding band, the second half of the engagement ring story. While you will be wearing only an engagement band for a certain period of time, you will eventually be wearing a wedding band as well. Because of this, it is important to keep BOTH rings in mind when you are deciding on ring styles. If one ring takes a priority over the other, it may make a big difference in the style that you choose. For example, if you want an eternity style wedding bank for certain, then youw ill want to make sure that the setting of your engagement ring will not affect the way your wedding band will lie. Conversely, if you have your heart set on a specific elaborate engagement ring, you will need to have your jeweler custom design you wedding band so that the two rings comfortably sit together – if you were planning on wearing them on the same finger. Of course, if you were going to wear them on different hands anyway, then this is not relevant. However, it is always nice to have the option to wear them together in the future – and maybe perhaps free up a finger for a new ring!


 

 

0.49 Round Brilliant Diamond Eternity Pave Set Wedding Ring

0.49 Round Brilliant Diamond Eternity Pave Set Wedding Ring

 

Though each specific diamond is most suitable for a particular setting, there are usually many choices. While one setting may be the best option, it is not necessarily the only option. Prong settings are very popular and go well with most stones, but do no provide the security of a bezel setting. A tension setting is bold and modern, more so than almost any other setting style, but is less secure than other settings. Every setting has its advantages and its disadvantages. It all depends on your diamond, your taste, and your preferences.

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