Alternative engagement rings are all the rage these days. Maybe you have heard the term and not quite understood it. “Alternative” really is defined as “available as another possibility”. I love possibilities! When it comes to a uniquely designed engagement ring… “imagine the possibilities!”
I’ve been doing custom jewelry design for quite a long time now, and one of the things I always say to custom clients is, “the possibilities are endless!” And they truly are! It’s a really fun part of my job to ask questions during this process and to offer some suggestions on what a custom ring, designed with their specific story in mind, could look like.
Perhaps diamonds aren’t your thing, or a specific birthstone is of special meaning, or a symbol is very close to your heart (think Celtic, celestial, religious, nature, even charkas or ancient languages). Maybe the number of stones is significant or the purity of the metal. Jewelry symbolism runs far and deep and there are so many fabulous alternatives to a “traditional” diamond solitaire ring.
Over a year ago I was commissioned to create a special engagement ring that would fit into the alternative engagement category. Through the conversations, we settled on the moon and star symbolism, and also the number seven. The ring design featured a hexagonal, rose cut opaque grey diamond, with moon shaped accents on the sides. The hexagonal faceting style shows a star-like pattern where the top facets intersect and the center stone would be one of 7 diamonds, with three round brilliant cut white diamonds on each side.
Palladium and Rose Gold Alternative Engagement Ring with Diamonds
For this custom engagement ring, we used palladium as the primary metal, a precious metal in the platinum family which is a great alternative to platinum, at a lower price. Unlike white gold, which is a naturally occurring yellow metal, platinum and palladium are naturally white, so there are no issues of color change over time. The accent metal is 14kt rose gold, which makes for a great two-tone look and a bit different than the yellow and white metal combinations more commonly seen.
Opaque Blue Rose Cut Diamond Ring with White Diamond
Opaque diamonds have become much more popular in recent years and are a hot trend for engagement jewelry, being one of the in-demand choices for alternative engagement rings. You may have also heard them called “salt and pepper diamonds” which are opaque diamonds that generally have black inclusions in them, giving them an interesting peppered look. Opaque diamonds are simply real, natural diamonds that do not have good clarity. With more organic, raw and natural forms of all gemstones being in fashion these days, it is no surprise that diamond jewelry trends have followed suit. Opaque diamonds come in all colors, just as transparent diamonds do. This allows for unique options in white, grey, yellow, blue, cognac, champagne and even chocolate!
Alternative engagement rings can really be whatever you want them to be. I have created engagement rings with sapphires and rubies, engagement rings in sterling silver, engagement rings with moonstone, engagement rings that work as part of a stack, engagement rings made with grandmother’s or other heirloom diamonds, engagement rings that aren’t solitaires at all. In fact, my Self Love Ring designs have become very popular as engagement rings, and I have created several custom versions with diamonds and alternative gemstones.
Generally, more durable gemstones are used in engagement rings and bridal jewelry because these are pieces that are worn frequently and every day. For this reason, a moonstone engagement ring may not be for everyone, and certainly requires a bit of extra care. Stones like diamond, sapphire, ruby, spinel, and garnet are all excellent, durable choices. This is another factor I always take into account when I am working with an engagement ring client to create their ring.
Moonstone Engagement Rings aren't for everyone!
Interested in having a custom engagement ring (or another piece of jewelry) designed just for you? Send me an email and let’s dive deep into your jewelry dreams!