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What's in an engagement rings style? You may be familiar with engagement ring settings, but there's a world of difference between the way a diamond is set in an engagement ring and the style that informs that setting. When we say this here at Merry Richards Jewelers, we're referring to the feeling and design trends that brands work into their pieces. Because "style" is a rather abstract term, there are many different styles on the market. However, there are four major categories that styles can be divided into. When you’re searching for a new ring, it's ideal to understand these major categories when doing your research.


The vintage engagement ring is inspired, most of the time, by a period between 1880 and 1935. These years represented a flowering of aesthetic theory the likes of which had never been seen before in the west. Art Nouveau is typified by a passion for color, natural inspiration, and organic curves; Art Deco is characterized by bold lines, platinum, and geometric perfection inspired by architecture. When you’re looking for vintage rings, you’ll note common themes, such as milgrain beading, halos, and the use of sapphire alongside white diamonds.


"Classic" doesn't mean the same thing as vintage. On the contrary, where vintage and contemporary rings represent a particular time period, the classic ring is made to appeal to a timeless beauty. When you imagine an engagement ring, you may be imagining a classic ring. Prong-set round-cut diamonds, as well as the use of yellow gold, characterize the classic engagement ring. Of course, while solitaires are the most classic of the classics, most stone arrangements can be fitted comfortably into the classic style.


Contemporary engagement rings are where designers get to flex their cutting-edge design chops. Contemporary rings can be distinguished by their use of design elements and stones that weren’t common or possible in previous centuries. For example, tension settings and princess-cut diamonds are two big touchstones for modern cool. You’ll find a lot more minimalism in contemporary rings, as well as a propensity toward rose gold and channel settings.


Something of a catch-all category, alternative engagement rings are those that fall well outside of the norms embraced by luxury designers. Wire-fixed stones, diamonds chosen for their inclusions, and non-precious metals, as well as unexpected designs and pieces that embrace subcultural themes, are what you can expect in an alternative engagement ring. While it may be difficult to find something really outré from a mainstream brand, don’t forget that Merry Richards Jewelers can help you to design something that fits your personal style.

If you're interested in learning more about engagement ring styles and what Merry Richards Jewelers has to offer, don't hesitate to get in contact with us for more information. You can reach our Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois showroom today at 1-630-516-8000!