Wedding Jewelry Trends for 2017
Today we’re happy to be featuring another wonderful guest post by Ronnie Berg with The American Wedding! Having been in business since 1919, this company has served generations of satisfied customers with their quality and values. Today Ronnie is sharing some of the knowledge and predictions the company has gathered through their staff of more than 250 great employees.
Read on to learn more about some of the hottest trends coming in engagement rings!
The reign of the traditional diamond solitaire engagement ring is officially a thing of the past. We don’t mean that they’re over – far from it. A classic diamond solitaire is … well, still classic. We just mean that it is no longer the only option. Engagement rings are as diverse as the women who wear them, and it’s a sure bet that if you are looking for something unique to you, you can find it or make it yourself!
To be clear, the diamond has not had a stranglehold on engagement rings forever. Some of the most famous engagement rings in the world have not featured diamond solitaires. Empress Josephine (engaged to Napoleon in 1795), her ring featured both a diamond and a sapphire; Blake Lively’s had a light pink diamond; Jackie Kennedy’s had an emerald; and, of course, Duchess Kate Middleton, who can forget that sapphire?
However, as weddings grow more personalized and colorful and everything from the invitations to the venue to the vows is tailored perfectly to the couple, anything goes, including untraditional rings!
The gemstone trend is now gaining steam, and to find yours, you’ll want to take a few things into consideration. Your own color preferences, of course, but also the metal in the band, any decoration or other stones you want to use as accents, and, most importantly, the strength of the stone. Not all gemstones have the durability that you will want in an engagement ring. When you design yours, you will want to be certain to pick a hard gemstone that can survive daily wear and tear forever.
Diamonds are an obvious choice, of course, but, in the interest of something different, other stones are great options as well. Ruby, topaz, and emerald are interesting options, but today we are here to talk about sapphires.
How to Select Your Sapphire
When you decide to include a sapphire in your engagement ring, the process is relatively similar to the process of shopping for a diamond ring. Where you want to evaluate the 4Cs of a diamond (cut, color, clarity, carat), you will want to evaluate the characteristics of your sapphire … specifically its hue, saturation, and tone.
The sapphire’s hue is simply its color. Sapphires come in many different colors, ranging from the deep blue you probably think of to yellows, greens, pinks, and greens – pink sapphires are particularly chic. The blue sapphire, usually a deep royal blue, is the most valuable of the sapphire family.
A sapphire’s saturation, also known as its intensity, is the clarity of its color. Saturation is the measurement of a brown or gray mask over the color, and this ranges through weak, medium, fair, strong, and vivid. (Sapphires with the best saturation are vivid.)
Finally, the stone’s tone is indicative of the amount of color in the sapphire. Some are very light or light, or dark or very dark. The most valuable sapphires have a medium tone.
Once you have chosen your sapphire, start thinking about the cut you would like in your engagement ring. Of the mainstream gemstones, sapphires are among the most difficult to find. Because of this rarity, jewelers try to preserve as much of the original material as possible when they shape the stone. Larger stones in oval and cushion cuts require less alteration of the natural gem, and, therefore, less work on the part of a jeweler. In contrast, gemstone shapes that call for more intricate work, a round cut or a cushion cut, will be slightly more expensive.
Recent trends include pear-shaped and rose sapphires, which set the wearer apart from the pack, and the tapered cut of the marquise-cut sapphires, which elongates your fingers. Because of this, smaller cut gems may end up costing more than larger gems. Keep this in mind as you’re shopping – if you are flexible on design, this can be a way to get a deal on a larger stone.
The Perfect Setting
Once your stone is cut and polished, you need to find a setting and a band. Sapphires accent just about any setting, alone or in combination with other gemstones. Your setting can show off your personal style. In a traditional setting with a floating center stone, consider adding dramatic claw prongs to your gem. White, yellow, or rose gold prongs will nicely contrast a blue sapphire, even if your band is another metal. Take the setting one step further by adding a few gallery diamonds, sapphires, or other stones underneath the center stone.
Modern sophisticated brides will appreciate a sapphire in a trendy east-west setting. An oval sapphire ring in this setting (which only means that the length of the oval runs perpendicular to your finger) is unexpected, makes the gem look a bit larger, and stands out from the pack.
That same bride might also consider sapphire or contrasting baguettes around a center stone. Those looking for some glamor may be interested in a sapphire center stone with a halo of diamonds or light-colored stones.
If you are more comfortable with color, an accent stone like an opal or even a pink sapphire will make a distinct statement. If you are a minimalist, don’t worry. Sapphires in nontraditional styles featuring clean lines are popping up everywhere. Those rings, absent of a halo, pave settings, or gallery stones, offer a stylish option for the bride who likes everything in order.
Finished with the Perfect Band
The ring wouldn’t be anything without a band. As with ring settings, the possibilities are endless. If you appreciate a romantic look, consider accenting your sapphire with floral details, petals, vines, or bouquets. Delicate settings look chic atop petite, unadorned bands. Or, a scalloped band – with or without pave stones – will add a bit of whimsy.
Other elaborate detailing, jewels, embossing, or even engraving will allow brides to add some personality to their ring. Instead of adorning the band, consider altering the band altogether. Instead of just one, add a second band for a double-shank look. Or look for a singular, twisted shank for a chic look with a little more visual interest than the traditional band. Square bands are also gaining popularity, as are textured metals like brushed or hammered gold, metals with marbled embellishments, and unique materials like palladium and black rhodium.
There are truly an infinite number of ring combinations for you to choose from. Sapphires are a sophisticated choice for those brides who want to forgo the traditional diamond route.
Ronnie is the content manager for The American Wedding. When she’s not scouring Pinterest and Instagram for the most adorable weddings, you can find her on her paddleboard with her pugs, Max and Charlie.
Wedding Jewelry Trends for 2017: Sapphire Engagement Rings