Engagement Rings: Trendy vs. Timeless

When it comes to choosing the one piece of jewelry that you will wear for the rest of your life, the wide array of options can be a little overwhelming.

Here's a how-to guide for you men out there!

It’s a pretty sure bet that you’re going to want a ring that will stand the test of time (both structurally and aesthetically), but that doesn’t solve the issue of whether you should go modern or antique.

While antique styles, replete with scroll-work and embellishments, have recently enjoyed a resurgence of popularity, you just can’t beat the clean lines and artistic simplicity of the modern styles.  And then you have to consider the central stone, the setting particulars, and how it’s going to match up to a wedding band. 

All in all, you have a lot of decisions to make, but the one you should start with is style, because it will no doubt influence every other option pertaining to your ring.

Antique Engagement Rings

Ask her friends what she likes!

Ask her friends what she likes!

There’s a lot to be said for antique styling. 

Classics from pioneers in the engagement ring industry like Tiffany & Co., Harry Winston, and Van Cleef & Arpels (to name a few) did it first and did it best, creating a brilliant jewelry landscape that endures today and continues to influence every aspect of design and manufacturing.

As a result, the styles they made popular decades ago continue to go in and out of fashion, always coming back into vogue eventually as they are rediscovered by a new generation. 

If it is your desire to secure an antique engagement ring (which is to say, pre-1960s), be prepared to pay handsomely, since they are currently highly sought-after and are often created with large stones of exceptional quality (in terms of the 4 Cs) and pricey platinum settings.  However, it you don’t have the dough to go truly antique, look for designers who are capitalizing on this revival to produce older styles from newer materials.  You can get close to the same thing for a bit less expense.

Modern Engagement Rings

On the other hand, there are plenty of modern rings that will no doubt stand the test of time.  The trick with modern settings (which can get a little avant garde, to put it delicately) and modern stones (which can be cut, colored, and generally made to look like anything other than the traditional, round-cut, nearly colorless classics) is to keep it simple. 

Going for something gauche and overdone is a sure way to ensure that your kids look upon your engagement ring with a mixture of amusement and horror when you offer it up as an heirloom down the road.  Instead, go for understated styling with a signature feel.  In short, the simpler, the better.  Large, colorful stones surrounded by diamond chips may grace the hands of celebrities, but that doesn’t mean the style will endure.  In fact, considering the transitory nature of celebrity in general, you should probably avoid whatever they’re wearing.

In the long run, the ring you choose is largely a matter of personal taste.  After all, you’re the one who has to wear it for the rest of your life.  And whether you choose to go trendy or timeless, modern or antique, you can find a ring that will remain beautiful for years to come and catch the eye of your kids long before you’re ready to give it up.  Just keep it simple and think about what you want the ring to say about its wearer.

About the Author
Sarah Danielson is a marketing manager for Adiamor Diamond Jewelry. Adiamor offers a large selection of engagement rings, engagement ring settings, loose diamonds and other fine diamond accessories.

Photo Credits
ljv via Flickr

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