Buying an engagement ring is one of the most significant purchases you will ever make, which is why it is so important to get something you love. Each person brings with them a unique set of preferences that will determine their perfect ring, and for a lot of people the thing at the top of that list is a large diamond. The influence of celebrity engagement rings and the rise of ring selfies on social media has everyone thinking bigger is better. But while we may desire the celebrity engagement rings, we don’t all have a celebrity budget. It is also important to not just purchase the largest carat diamond you can afford while fully ignoring the colour, clarity and cut. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to have a larger stone with noticeable flaws and inclusions in it. We recommend buying a high quality diamond in a size that works within your budget, and then using these design tips to help your stone appear even larger.
Taking a Fancy
Consider a fancy cut diamond instead of a round brilliant cut. While the round brilliant is the most popular diamond shape, it is also the most expensive. To produce the round brilliant cut a large portion of the rough stone is removed which increases the manufacturing costs. The high market demand also drives the price point up. You can expect to save around 25% on a fancy cut diamond with a carat to carat comparison. Elongated diamond cuts tend to look largest on the finger so look to oval, marquise and emerald cuts to make the biggest impact. Some fancy cut shapes do appear quite a bit smaller than round diamonds, weight for weight, however. So be sure to do a direct comparison and see what makes the most sense for you.
The easiest way to make your diamond look bigger is to add a halo around it. A halo is when the center stone is tightly wrapped in smaller diamonds all the way around. The halo tricks the eye into thinking that it is a part of the center diamond and therefore is seen as a much bigger stone. This is one of the reasons that halo engagement rings have been so popular for many years now. You can even add a double halo which takes up even more real estate on your finger and really makes a statement.
Cluster of Sparkle
One trend that has finally come back into style is that of the cluster diamond ring. A cluster ring is when multiple diamonds are set closely together to form a design, like a flower or starburst, or they can be set into a modern asymmetrical design. The emphasis is on the design motif, not on one single stone. The sparkle of all the different diamonds together makes the ring look quite significant and can be a lot less expensive than one single large diamond.
I’m with the Band
A thin band will make your diamond appear larger than if it was on a thick band. The eye is tricked into seeing the stone as larger in comparison to the band. Adding small pavé diamonds along the band can also highlight the contrast between the very small stones and the center diamond. A tapered band, which starts thicker at the back of the ring and becomes progressively thinner towards the center stone, also helps the center diamond really pop.
White and Bright
Setting the diamond into a white gold or platinum ring can also help it look larger as the prongs will blend more seamlessly into the diamond. This also helps for a halo ring as there will be less contrast between the center stone and the diamonds in the halo. If you have your heart set on a rose or yellow gold ring, you could have only the diamond basket be in a white metal, and the rest of the ring in your choice of gold.
The Perfect Ring
In the end remember that diamond size is only one factor to consider when engagement ring shopping, and that diamond quality and ring design are just as important when it comes to creating a beautiful ring. If size is important to you, these useful tips will help your diamond appear larger without the huge price tag. No matter what size of diamond, the perfect engagement ring is the one that is perfect for you and fills you with joy every time you look at your hand.
Sara is the Jewelry Production and Social Media Coordinator at Kimberfire – a brilliant way to buy engagement rings, fine jewelry and loose diamonds in Toronto. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Art from York University and a Diploma in Jewellery Arts from George Brown College. She is skilled in jewellery design using CAD software, as well as traditional goldsmith techniques. When she is not immersing herself in all things jewellery, Sara is a dog mom to Barley, her beagle mix rescue dog who loves a good tummy rub.