Not everyone wants a flashy princess cut diamond set in a sparkly pave band. The good news is there are many ways to change up a ring to suit your personal style. I’ll point out some of the ways you can find engagement rings for alternative brides.

1. Choose a unique shape or cut.

Princess Cut Diamond

One of the most prominent parts of a ring is its gem shape. If you don’t want a drastic departure from the traditional, changing the shape of a diamond ring can give you just enough of a unique spin.

The most common diamond shapes for engagement rings are cushion, princess, and round. Other standard shapes include oval, princess, pear, emerald, radiant, marquise, Ascher, and heart.

You can also opt for a different cut. Shape and cut are sometimes confused. The shape is how the gem appears when viewed from above. The meaning of “cut” is also literal, referring the way the angles on its surface are cut.

For example, a “princess” style can refer to a shape (square with rounded sides) or a cut (pyramid). Standard cuts are a brilliant cut (flashy with many small angles), princess cut, step cut (square or geometrical), and mixed cut (incorporates multiple cuts).

Instead of a single gem, you could consider a cluster of diamonds. Using multiple gemstones allows you to play with designs and patterns to get exactly the look you want. You could even go for a rough cut or raw diamonds. These are perfect engagement rings for alternative brides.

The Antique Look

Round Cut Diamond

Going for an antique style is an easy way to avoid a ring that looks too traditional. Techniques used on antique cuts focused on warmth and romanticism rather than the shine and brilliance that dominates today. Some well-known antique cuts are rose, table, old mine, and old European.

  • The rose cut imitated the shape of its namesake with a rounded shape. The top is domed, and it has fewer surfaces or facets. This style first came to prominence in the 1500s.
  • The table cut is simplistic, with a flat square surface and a few facets on its sides. This cut is rare today and was one of the earliest cuts used.
  • Old mine cuts were used in the 1800s and early 1900s. They use a rounded square shape with more facets.
  • The old European cut is also rounded and many-faceted. It is similar to the modern brilliant cut, but is notably larger and was used throughout the 1900s.

If you want to go even more antique, take a look at some full-on antique styles that also switch up the setting and band. Some eras or themes to consider are Georgian, Victorian, Art Nouveau, Edwardian, Art Deco, and Retro.

2. Change up the gem.

Maybe you want a more extreme change, which you might find by adding color or opting out of a diamond altogether. A white sparkling diamond isn’t the only type out there. Natural color diamonds allow for more variety, with the most common natural color ranging from a faint to light yellow.

Although colorless diamonds are more highly graded, color doesn’t reflect the quality of a diamond. You might even find that you prefer the warm tones that a little color can add to your ring.

Naturally colored diamonds exist in more vibrant colors too, like black and purple. These are rare and more expensive. A more affordable option is available in the form of enhanced color diamonds, which are treated in labs and offer a broad range of color.

Ditch the Diamond

If you’re looking for vibrant color, it’s worth considering different gemstones when looking at engagement rings for alternative brides. Some, like sapphire or ruby, are beginning to show up more often in engagement rings. Others options can include aquamarine, morganite, amethyst, emerald, and even turquoise.

To add personality or meaning, choosing a birthstone can also be a good choice. Black onyx and moonstones are great alternatives if you want to avoid flashy colors.

3. Experiment with the metals: band and setting.

The setting and bands of your ring are where you have the most flexibility. Some people get rid of a set stone and opt for a wide, detailed band. A ring stack can also break tradition and symbolize life stages with your significant other.

Changing the metal of your ring can give it an entirely different feel. Platinum, white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold are relatively newer metal choices. Oxidized metal can be used to give a vintage feel to your ring.

The prongs hold your gemstones in place also leave room for personalization. You could opt for a typical prong setting, a Tiffany prong setting with more space between the gem and the prongs, or a channel setting.

A channel setting allows you line up many, smaller gems in a row or design of your choosing. It’s similar to pave, a style with numerous small gems placed tightly together as if they were “paved” like cobblestone. You can add pave to the band, prongs, or even make it the center of your ring.

Many people now stylize their bands, using two intertwining bands or modeling a ring based on elements in nature. Tree or feather-inspired designs can add just the detail for a perfect fit.

An engagement ring is a special milestone and one that no longer requires you to give up your personal style.

Ready to Design the Ring of Your Dreams?

Vanessa Nicole is an award-winning designer, master diamond setter and author of the bestselling book The Perfect Custom Engagement Ring. She creates stunning custom antique engagement rings for clients all over the globe.

The Artist’s Studio

Vanessa Nicole Jewels specializes in micro pavé engagement rings, bringing award winning talent to those who desire the highest quality engagement ring experience for their life partner. The benefits of a micro pavé engagement ring are obvious. However, such a stunning ring is only more breathtaking and built to last when it is custom made by a professional jewelry studio rather than a mass production wholesaler.

  • All our micro pavé engagement rings are created exclusively for you. No overseas workers, no duplicates!
  • You work directly with the designer to execute your vision. No pushy salespeople!
  • We meticulously select every diamond in-house to ensure that it meets our high standards for sparkle.
  • We use ONLY the most brilliant-looking diamonds.
  • All our custom micro pavé engagement rings include the option of the “Making Of Your Ring™” DVD service – a special video that shows her ring being made, which she’ll watch over and over!

Vanessa Nicole Jewels specializes in creating custom, one-of-a-kind engagement rings and wedding rings. Personalized Service & Happiness Guaranteed!

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