Non-Diamond Engagement Rings—Make a Statement
Modern weddings are becoming increasingly unconventional, with more brides ready to experiment with non-traditional rings. While diamonds remain the popular choice for engagement rings today, there's a growing trend toward colored gemstones and exclusive designs. There are several reasons for this, including cost considerations or the desire for a more unique proposal.
Many brides and grooms love the pop of color that a non-diamond engagement ring offers. Plus, a dazzling gemstone is a beautiful way to symbolize your love and express special sentiments. To help you find a stunning diamond alternative, we've pulled together a guide that outlines popular gemstone and design options.
Gemstone Engagement Rings
While these gemstones can look great and add dashes of color to a woman's style, many advise against non-diamond engagement rings. There are a number of reasons why these rings may not be suitable for everyday wear (and the truth is, most women want to be able to wear their engagement ring year-round). Here is a look at a few non-traditional engagement ring stones and some considerations you should take into account before buying.
While gemstone adorned rings feature a myriad of precious or semiprecious stones, sapphire has garnered a tremendous boost in popularity, thanks to Princess Diana and Kate Middleton's striking ring. The stately blue sparkle of this gemstone lends itself to beautiful pieces that modern brides absolutely love. A sapphire engagement ring surrounded by a halo of diamonds and set in platinum radiates royalty and opulence. A statement wedding ring with a blue sapphire center stone is perfect for women who love vintage picks.
The emerald is considered a very precious stone, nearly as distinctive as the diamond. The beauty of green emerald is exceptional, and when crafted in modern silhouettes, emerald pieces make for exquisite engagement rings. Emerald rings are available in several settings and metal types, including yellow and white gold and sterling silver. From eternity bands, cocktail rings to geometric silhouettes, an emerald looks flawless in virtually every design. It gives you limitless options to find a gorgeous non-traditional engagement ring that enhances the lovely personality of your fiancee.
Amethyst shines a beautiful, deep violet color. It is the official birthstone of February and has a maximum Mohs scale rating of 7. It is a versatile stone that can easily be cut into a variety of shapes, such as squares, ovals, hearts, and more. This ability to be easily shaped is one of amethyst's weaknesses as it is somewhat prone to show blemishes over time due to prolonged wearing. A deep purple amethyst can hide scratches and internal cracks for a time, but lighter stones make these imperfections more noticeable.
Topaz is a beautiful stone that comes in a variety of colors, from yellow to orange to the well-known blue hues. It is a very strong stone, with a Mohs rating of 8. Topaz is recognized by the National Association of Jewelers as the official birthstone for November.
However, the popular and highly desirable blue topaz may not be the most desirable choice for an engagement ring worn daily. These stones are nearly always treated to bring about their color and have a thin coating that may eventually result in a slight loss of color over time. This thin coating also means that the gems must be worn and handled gingerly, as they are prone to scratches.
Opals are classified as "secondary precious" gems, the second most expensive category of gemstones. The appearance of any two of these stones can vary greatly, as they can express every color in the visible spectrum. Often, multiple colors will "flash" or "play" across a single stone. The opal is a moderately durable stone, with a Mohs rating that ranges from 5.5 to 6.
One overhyped fact is the presence of fractures due to dryness over time. If the gem becomes too dry, it will almost certainly develop noticeable cracks. Because of this, some people swear that the only way to keep an opal in good condition is to soak it in water. This process is definitely overkill, as the moisture an opal absorbs from contact with human skin is usually enough to keep it from sustaining any significant damage. Still, keeping an opal free from extremely dry conditions resulting from prolonged storage or extremely arid climates makes it less ideal as an engagement ring gemstone.
Other Semiprecious Gemstone Embellished Rings
Looking for a fabulous non-traditional engagement ring that won't break the bank? Rings with semiprecious gemstones are a definite go-to. Modern jewelry designers now use the vivid hues of aquamarine, morganite, and tanzanite to curate beautiful rings in distinctive styles. An aquamarine ring with diamond accents showcases the icy blue tones of the semiprecious stone, with the subtle glow from the tiny diamonds adding to its beauty. Morganite rings are for ladies who love everything pink and pretty. The pink tone of the stone complements the blush hue of rose gold for charming rings.
Pearls fall under "organic gemstones," a classification that includes natural amber, red coral, and jet. As you are probably aware, pearls are unique in that they are formed within living creatures (oysters) instead of inside the earth's crust. As such, they are considered the most valuable organic gemstones in the world. They are also one of the three recognized birthstones of June. As they are formed naturally inside a living being, pearls come in a wide variety of shapes—including drop, button, and oval. The most highly sought-after round pearls are very rare and, as you can imagine, relatively expensive.
While they are breathtakingly beautiful, many would advise against a pearl as the central stone in an engagement ring. Pearls are also a very soft gem, with a Mohs rating of 2.5 to 4.5. There are varying reports on their susceptibility to damage due to everyday wear, changing temperatures, or dryness. In short, you should carefully consider these factors before choosing a pearl as your daily engagement ring.
Gemstones and vintage silhouettes complement each other for unique engagement rings. Our Estate rings feature precious stones like sapphires and rubies set in intricately patterned bands. Inspired by the Victorian and Edwardian eras, gemstone-encrusted vintage engagement rings have an ethereal beauty that's ever-enduring.
Embedding the birthstone of your future partner in the engagement ring is a fabulous way of personalizing this very special treasure. There's a unique gemstone assigned to each birth month, and you can ask your jeweler for design options to customize the ring to match your fiancee's preferences. A customized birthstone ring with a vivid gemstone not just makes for an elegant accessory but shows your love and effort in selecting the birthstone that reflects the unique personality of your loved one.
Before choosing a non-diamond engagement, speak to your jeweler for expert advice on the durability of the stone. It's essential to consider your lifestyle when shopping for a non-diamond engagement ring. You will want to choose a beautiful gemstone-based engagement ring that's also long-lasting.
Diamond Engagement Rings: Still the Perfect Choice
There is no doubt that the many varieties of gemstones available are great options for different types of jewelry: rings, earrings, bracelets, etc. But when it comes to everyday wear and durability, nothing beats a diamond. Diamonds can be worn year-round, regardless of heat and humidity factors. With a Mohs scale rating of 10, you and your fiance can feel at ease knowing that the stone on your finger will stand the test of time without worries of cracks or abrasions.