Big, sparkly diamonds have been the traditional choice for engagement rings for over a century. It may come as a surprise to know that diamonds weren’t always considered the forever stone. In the 1900s diamonds were simply one of many choices among gemstones.
Diamonds were a popular choice for engagement settings, however, tourmaline, pearl, emerald and even fiery carnelian were also fashionable at the time. The notion of the diamond being the quintessential engagement stone resulted from a well-crafted, exceptionally effective, multi-decade marketing campaign that positioned the gem as the one and only choice.
Today, social constricts have become more relaxed and people are waiting longer to marry. Many women are now moving away from traditional engagement rings in favor of pieces that are more personally meaningful, and a true representation their unique style and values.
The decision to forego a diamond for a colored gemstone is sometimes moral. Some choose to skip a stone altogether. One poignant example being the stone-less, “True Lovers Knot.” The romantic design is made of two interlocking overhand knots, in two parallel, precious metal bands; each free to move about the other, yet inseparable.
Perhaps your perfect engagement ring is made of warm rose gold and Oregon sunstone, and tells a personal story about how you fell in love in late summer, on a sun-kissed beach in the Northwest. Or, maybe you’ve always associated rubies with passion, would like to support a local artisan, or have a vintage, heirloom sapphire that would add emotional value to an alternative setting.
There is no hard and fast rule that an engagement ring must feature a multi-carat diamond sparkler. An engagement ring should be a symbol of commitment, as well as a personal expression of style. Choose a style and stone that speaks to you—something that gives you joy, and that you will love to wear every day.
Braswell and Son’s discerning staff, and distinctive selection of new and vintage luxury engagement jewelry will inspire you to look beyond the standard diamond to create your own story.