Jewelry is worn for all sorts of reasons. Some people have pieces that are meaningful because of the event they represent or the person that gave it to them. Others are attracted by the sheer beauty of the stones and the exquisiteness of the craftsmanship involved.
Whatever your motivation, buying a diamond ring is an unforgettable experience, and also one that’s inevitably intimidating. To help out, here are some tips and guidelines for choosing gorgeous jewelry that will assist you in navigating this expansive market.
First off, there’s the aesthetically important option of which ring design you choose. While bespoke pieces can obviously be created in whatever configuration you please, there are some standard layouts that are handy to know about if your budget won’t stretch to a one-of-a-kind piece.
The solitaire is a solo diamond set in a simple band, as the name suggests, while the halo ups the ante with additional gems arranged in a circle around a central stone. Cocktail rings tend towards a large, emerald-cut stone with smaller gems at the perimeter, and sidestone designs will have one main diamond, with the circumference of the band studded with additional stones.
If you aren’t sure which way to go, consider the occasion. For a winter wedding, for example, a ring design which focuses on colorless diamonds in a pattern similar to a snowflake will make an artistic statement!
Natural vs lab-grown stones
Next, you need to consider whether you’re going for a natural diamond ring, or one that uses synthetically produced gems.
This is not as tough of a choice as you might expect, because there are lab-created diamond rings that connoisseurs can’t ignore which are indistinguishable from the real thing.
The reason for this is that the diamonds made artificially have the exact same chemical makeup as their mined equivalents. In fact they are virtually flawless, which is really the best way to tell the difference, because natural diamonds usually have inclusions, even if they are microscopic.
Natural diamonds are also pricier, so for buyers who want a gorgeous diamond ring that doesn’t cost a bomb, lab-grown varieties are the obvious choice.
Weighing up the other materials in a ring
Diamonds might be the headline act in any ring, but they are ably supported by the underlying material of the band itself.
Your decision on this point is crucial, because different materials alter the look of the stones themselves. For example, diamonds in the same configuration will be affected according to whether the band is made from sterling silver, gold, or platinum.
There’s also the issue of how the band is shaped, which will depend on a variety of other aspects of the design. A flat inner surface is commonplace, because of the comfort this affords, but rounded bands also take center stage in certain scenarios.
You might even have your eye caught by a ring design which artistically intertwines two or more metals in a thrilling combination. Filigreed surfaces which add texture can also help a ring to stand out from the crowd, and will influence whether a ring has a modern or vintage look, even if it was produced only yesterday.
The bottom line on diamond rings
No one can tell you which diamond ring to buy. It has to be a decision that comes from the heart, with the only involvement of your head being in setting out a budget before you start searching.
The art of jewelry making has never been more varied or diverse, so there’s a ring design out there to suit every style.