Every single engagement ring carries a lot of sentiment at one time or another, because it marked the start of a lifelong journey together of two different people. Besides its symbolic representations of love and unity, this jewelry piece is often one of the most valuable investments one can make in life, which means that the buying decision has to be made shrewdly. You simply do not get off just figuring out the best site to buy diamonds online, for instance.
An engagement ring is usually worn by women their entire life, which means that it should not just be a one-of-a-kind piece, but also able to perfectly blend with their style statement and personality. Custom designing is a great way to achieve this, since you get the freedom to choose the settings and center stone as per liking. Below is a quick look at the different jewelry eras, as well as the styles they are known for. Your jeweler could guide you throughout the designing process easily enough, but the information shared here can be useful towards making an informed choice.
The Georgian Era
The period from 1714 to 1837 was particularly known for the wide use of colored stones, even though diamonds stayed a popular choice in engagement rings all through the Georgian era. Jewelers also started experimenting with new cuts and styles for colored stones during this time, coming up with a variety of interesting and alluring pieces as a result. The trend of silver and gold being used together also emerged as a big fad during this period. Highly expensive engagement rings were set in silver first, and then coated with gold to avoid tarnishing as well.
The Victorian Era
The period from 1835 to 1890 is when the use of birthstones in engagement rings really became a trend. While it was common to have sapphires or emeralds in rings by this time, ancient symbols and designs were also integrated by jewelers to come up with inspiring jewelry styles. This became especially popular when Prince Albert gifted a snake engagement ring to Queen Victoria.
The Edwardian Era
The period from 1895 to 1915 was when engagement jewelry started to take up on more artistic and softer looks. This era also saw the rise of platinum as the most preferred ring metal for its supreme durability and unmatched luster. Besides, the Edwardian era paved way for more delicate and feminine designs as well, and filigree techniques too began to show up in engagement rings by the end of the period.
The Art Nouveau Era
The period from 1895 to 1915 cannot be termed as specific a jewelry era, because this time witnessed a large movement to include creativity in all respects of daily life, instead of making it a part of various art forms alone. Jewelry pieces of this period included smooth curves and depictions from nature, be they of animals, plants, or even insects, while inspirations from architecture can also be seen in many of the Art Nouveau pieces. The use of diamond accents also came into the picture during this time, while some jewelers also experimented with using enamel on engagement rings in order to get an alluring stained-glass effect.
The Art Deco Era
The period from 1915 to 1935 can be considered one of the most renowned fashion-oriented eras in history. This was the time when women started taking on bold and unique styles in clothing and accessories, and that lead to a gradual shift in the mood of jewelry, from the limited styles of Victorian era and towards more unique and geometric shapes. Even though production was practically paused during WWI, this era was on the whole a prosperous one for the global jewelry market.
The Retro Era
The period from 1935 to 1950 was a time when the world was getting back on track after wartime. This era was characterized by emphasis on different kinds of gold in engagement rings, such as rose gold and green gold. Some of the jewelry styles of this era also featured mixed metals, while the use of platinum was very rarely seen because of the metal’s high demand during the war. Jewelry pieces of this period were usually large and gaudy, as women preferred to follow Hollywood starlets rising to fame at the time.
The Modern Era
The period stretching from 1950 to the present time has featured all styles from its precursor jewelry eras. Today, we can have it all in vintage and antique pieces, while the use of all the different metals is also common in the market nowadays. Nor is choice of stones limited to just diamonds or a set of precious stones – we can have any gemstone today in almost any preferred color. Engagement ring settings too have evolved in the past decades, and more intricate designs and styling are now available at very reasonable prices.