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The Different Kinds of Diamond Rings

By Alina

Marketing and Communications Advisor with a passion for diamonds and a nose for trends. Always happy to share the latest developments in the jewelry business with you.

June 4, 2020

When you are in the market for a diamond ring, the jeweler will ask you a lot of questions. One of the things he will probably ask is what you have in mind in regards of the 4 C’s.

Do you already have your idea about carat, color, clarity, and cut? But another thing he will definitely ask is whether you already have something in mind. To help you get started, I compiled a list of the different kinds of diamond rings.

Which different kinds of diamond rings and ring settings are there?

As you can imagine, there are numerous different kinds of rings and ring settings. It is nearly impossible to mention them all. Therefore, I will stick to the most well-known different diamond ring settings. These are:

  • Solitaire
  • You & me
  • Trilogy
  • Semi-alliance
  • Eternity
  • Pavé
  • Halo
  • Illusion
  • Vintage
  • Cocktail
  • For men

Solitaire rings

One of the most famous designs for diamond rings is the solitaire. A solitaire is a ring with a single diamond. It is THE classic when it comes to diamond engagement rings. Any ring with only one diamond or other gemstone is called a solitaire. However, there are many different types of solitaire engagement rings.

solitaire ring Classic solitaire diamond ring

Besides the different styles, you can also vary the diamond cut. For the term solitaire, it does not matter whether you choose a classic brilliant cut or another cut, such as a heart-shape for example. We refer to both as them as solitaires. However, many people jump to the brilliant as 95% of all diamonds are brilliant cuts. So if you prefer a solitaire with a different cut it is always wise to mention that as well.

You & Me rings

The name says it already. This type of ring represents the two of you. The You & Me ring contains two diamonds that are somewhat “curled” around each other. It looks a lot like a bypass solitaire ring, but with two stones instead of one. One of the great things about a You & Me ring is the flexibility. You often have the option to choose your own (gem)stones. The most popular option is a ring with two diamonds. However, you can also select a diamond and a gemstone. Or two gemstones for that matter.

you & me diamond ring You & Me diamond ring

You & Me rings are one of the most beloved engagement rings. But we also see them as promise rings or ‘friendship rings’. A lovely idea for such a promise ring is the birthstones of the two of you. Whichever stones you chose, there is no better ring to represent the two of you.

Trilogy rings

Another ring that symbolizes your relationship is the trilogy ring. This is a three-stone diamond ring. Usually, the stone in the middle is bigger than the one on the side. Rule of thumb is that the combined weight of both side stones is approximately the same as the weight of the center stone. The ring represents the past, the present and the future together. That’s why trilogy rings make great engagement and wedding rings. Even though “the past, the present and the future” is the most common meaning for the trilogy ring, it can also have another meaning. For example:

  • Friendship, love and devotion
  • Family
  • The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit
  • To love, honor and cherish

There is no rule about which meaning to choose.

 A Trilogy Ring often represents the past, the present and the future together. 

Semi-alliance rings

An alliance is a row of diamonds. When we speak about an alliance ring, we mean a ring with a row of diamonds on it. This can be a continuous string all the way around. But we usually refer to these as eternity rings or full-alliance rings. Semi-alliance rings have a partial string of diamonds that usually is enough to cover the top of the finger. We see semi-alliance rings often as a wedding band that complements the engagement ring.

Willeke ring The Willeke is a semi-alliance ring

There is not a preset amount of stones for a semi-alliance ring. However, we usually see them with five, six or seven stones. In our experience this is enough to cover the upper part of the ring. An example of a five-stone semi-alliance is the Willeke ring. This is our own design. The five diamonds in this ring stand for: “You are special to me” or “I will always love you”. These meanings make this semi-alliance ring not only suitable as an engagement ring or a wedding band. They are also the perfect gift for a daughter, granddaughter or a good friend.

Eternity rings

Eternity rings look a lot like (semi-)alliance rings. The only difference is that the row of diamonds is continuous. It goes all the way round. ‘Eternity’ has a double meaning for this ring. On one hand it refers to the row of diamonds that does not seem to end. On the other hand it stands for eternal love. The eternity ring is a popular wedding ring. You can wear it together with an engagement ring. Whether you choose a semi-alliance ring or an eternity ring is a matter of personal taste.

Eternity ring Eternity rings go all the way round

Pavé ring

A pavé ring is a ring with lots and lots of small diamonds. Just like a street is paved, so is the diamond pavé ring. Unlike the solitaire and the other rings, the pavé ring does not serve a specific goal. However, certain pavé rings are so exclusive and so extravagant that they work well on special occasions.

pave ring Classic pave ring

A different kind of pavé

The real definition of a pavé is the cluster of lots of small diamonds. However, many people mean something different when they mention a ring with a pavé. They refer to the pavé as a string or row of diamonds on the band of the ring. However, they are complementing a bigger stone or multiple bigger stones. This kind of pavé is not a type of ring setting per se. But it is often used to add extra sparkle to a solitaire ring setting. Over the years, this definition of pavé integrated in the jewelry world. Therefore, if you are looking for a pavé ring, I recommend bringing a picture or a clear description of what you have in mind because there are in fact two separate definitions.

 Solitaire ring with pave

Halo ring

Just like the pave on the band, the halo more a setting option than a kind of diamond ring. Halos are often paired with pave bands. A halo is a circle or square of (small) diamonds around a larger stone. The benefits of a halo are that the main stone looks bigger and the ring sparkles more. Especially for gemstones, the halo is very popular. That is because gemstones, in general, sparkle a lot less than diamonds. The halo can provide a lot of sparkle and literally brighten the ring.

diamond ring with haloDiamond ring with a halo around a large Royal 201 cut and a pave on the band

Illusion ring

Just like a pavé, the illusion consists of multiple diamonds. But whereas the pavé is simply a cluster of diamonds, the illusion is different. The Illusion ring is a cluster of specific diamonds that together create the illusion of a single bigger stone. For example, four princess cuts in a square can give the illusion of a bigger princess cut. And four triangles with rounded edges can look like a big brilliant cut.

Illusion ringWhen multiple small diamonds look like one larger, we call this an Illusion ring 

The most common reason to choose an illusion rings is the price. The price of the diamond grows exponentially. Therefore, four smaller diamonds with a combined weight of 1,00 carat are less valuable than one diamond with the same weight.

Vintage ring

A vintage or antique diamond ring can be found in thrift stores. However, there are also plenty of new vintage diamond rings. It is just another setting among the different kinds of diamond rings. Characteristic for vintage ring setting is that the Edwardian or Art Deco style. This means a lot of curling and floral details mounted in the gold band. Another typical feature of the vintage ring settings is the “open” cathedrals. This means there are artistic ‘holes’ in the ring to give the ring a more romantic look and feel.

vintage ringVintage rings often have ‘open spaces’ and a floral design

Cocktail ring

There are many different kinds of diamond cocktail rings. But one thing is absolutely clear. A cocktail ring is always big, bold and beautiful. It is sure to capture the attention and a true conversation starter. Diamond cocktail rings are not an essential piece. They are the absolute top of luxury. After all, they are often only worn on special occasions or at special events.

queen of the nightThe Queen of the Night is a cocktail ring with a big black diamond in it

One of the nice things about diamond cocktail rings is that they are usually one of a kind. Solitaires and alliance rings are rarely unique. I can’t speak for other jewelers, but with one of our cocktail rings, you know you have something no one else has.

Rings for men

Most diamond rings are for women. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any options for men. There are actually many different kinds of diamond rings for men. Roughly there are two kinds of rings: minimalistic with little or no diamonds and full-on diamond rings.

diamont ring for men

Especially for wedding rings, we usually see straightforward rings for men. More often than not, they don’t have a diamond in it. However, for the diamond lover, we also have a special collection of diamond rings for men. These rings have a cool and sturdy look and feel and contain a number of diamonds.

Choosing the right diamond ring

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Whether you're looking for a diamond solitaire ring, an alliance or eternity ring or a diamond trilogy, we have it. And what we don't have, we can make.

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