Does She Want an Antique Engagement Ring? September 25, 2017 – Posted in: Jewelry Blog

The answer, unsurprisingly, is probably (but maybe not always) yes, yes she does. If you are already asking the question, the answer is probably: Yes. Now we’ve established that, what type of ring? From which era? A diamond is the most likely stone, with an antique example set into a vintage style ring. So there you are, problem solved.

Except such generalizations usually cause more problems than most.

The style of ring, including the stone, the era and just the general look will all depend on her own individual style and preferences. So let’s break it down into manageable chunks to help guide you through this very important process.

The Antique Engagement Ring Chart

Making Sure You’re Doing The Right Thing

The fact is that not every bride-to-be wants an antique engagement ring, possibly because they don’t fully appreciate the beauty or sense of history and style, or possibly just because she feels it isn’t for her. Either way, don’t just assume one will be welcomed unconditionally, so do your best to establish whether you’re doing the right thing before you even start.

Does She Even Know What Antique Jewelry Is?

If she doesn’t, and she’s never shown an interest in it, then you’re probably better served going down a different path. But, even if she doesn’t own any antique rings or other jewelry, she might have expressed an opinion in the past. If she has, and it was of a positive bent, then you can be assured you’re probably onto a winner.

Which Era Suits Her Best?

Just when you thought you’d cracked the code, it starts to get a little tricky. Antique jewelry comes in many guises, depending on the designer, the era in which it was made and several other considerations. Of course, if she already has a favorite era, and you’ve paid enough attention to what she says about it, then the job is half done. But don’t despair if you have no idea, all is not lost. You don’t need to know which style goes with which period, that’s what jewelers are for. As long as you know the period she likes, you’ll be okay.

It may, though, be that your fiancée actually likes the look of antique engagement rings, but just has a preference for brand new. In that case, an antique diamond in a brand new setting will do the job perfectly. She gets the style of ring she wants, but also manages to capture a little piece of history into the bargain. A win-win by anybody’s standards.

If you’re going antique all the way, however, but don’t really know what she’d like, you might be surprised at how many visual clues she’s already giving out. Everything from her existing jewelry to the clothes she wears will tell you something about the style of ring she’ll fall in love with.

Clothes Maketh The Ring

Forget what she wears at work, as that style will always contain a nod to convention or job-requirements. Instead, look at what she wears if you go to dinner, or for a walk, or to a ball game. Whatever she wears when she’s just being her, will be the best and biggest clue she can give you.

If she still leans towards a smart and elegant look, art deco has you covered. A style entrenched in the industrialization of the early 20th century with its sharp angles and perfect symmetry, there’s a reason why art deco is one of the most popular style periods in history, and why rings from the era dominate the vintage and antique markets.

For a woman who likes to be a girl and to demonstrate her femininity by the wearing of flowered print materials or frills, you need to step back a little further in time. Prior to the mechanization that drove art deco, we had the Edwardian era which meant lots more curves and much fewer corners. Often containing elements of nature, Edwardian jewelry is still very popular and has a beauty which emphasizes the gentleness of the post-Victorian lady.

Speaking of Victoria, in contrast to her own apparent queenly demure exterior (and despite the ‘Mrs Brown’ rumors), the era was known for its Bohemian style from the influences of central Europe, or what we’d more likely know as forerunners to the goth fashions of today. Indeed, even Victoria’s own jewelry was very bold and often contained different colored stones. In some ways a Victorian-era engagement ring probably leans more towards a style we might consider today as costume jewelry, but it is exquisite in its design and construction.

If your partner goes for a more, let’s say ‘vibrant’, look, then you need to look at rings to match this level of flamboyance. Fortunately, engagement ring designers have been way ahead of you for years. Retro era engagement rings have been around for many years, and are on the non-conformist side of design, where almost anything goes. All colors of the jewelry rainbow are used, and even metals which you may not immediately associate with an engagement ring. If she really is loud (there, we said it) in her clothing choice, don’t disappoint with the ring!

A Summary

  • Find out what she likes
  • If you don’t know, just watch
  • Her clothes and existing jewelry will tell you where to look
  • Let the jeweler help, they’ve done this more times than anybody
  • If you know her, you’ll get it right