Vintage rings for women

What does “vintage” actually mean?

I was helping a friend who was about to get engaged ask me this question. Don’t worry if your loved one wants a vintage engagement band or you are just window shopping. It’s quite simple.

This article will explain what makes a ring “vintage” and the various styles and design elements that vintage engagement rings may have. We’ll then show you examples of vintage-inspired, modern and authentic vintage rings.

What makes an engagement ring “vintage”?

“Vintage” is anything less than 20 years old. “Antique” is anything more than 100 years old. The term “vintage” describes a ring’s style, not its age. If you are looking for vintage engagement rings, it is best to search for modern, vintage-style ring settings.

You’re probably looking for a simple engagement ring, most likely from the “Retro Era”, between 1940-1960. The majority of vintage designs are more elaborate.

Your spouse may prefer an older ring over a modern-inspired one if they frequent second-hand shops. Ask your family for any heirloom rings they might have.

Eras and inspiration for vintage engagement rings

There are no style rules for vintage engagement rings aside from age. Technically, any ring from the 1990s is considered “vintage.” But, we will discuss four styles often modelled after vintage rings. Take a look at what you like.

Victorian Era (1835-1900)

Engagement rings were very varied in the Victorian Era. Victorian jewellery can be divided into early and middle styles. Victorian rings were usually made of yellow or rose gold and included diamonds. This era saw the rise of rows, halos and clusters with diamonds. A yellow gold double halo engagement ring might be an example of a Victorian-inspired vintage ring.

Are you looking for diamond buying advice?

To help you feel confident in purchasing diamonds, we offer no-obligation advice.

Popular Colors

Blue was Queen Victoria’s favourite colour, so turquoise and blue enamel were common in jewellery during this time. Pearls were often featured. Permaculture was not yet perfected, so pearls in the jewellery of this era were naturally occurring. Smaller seed pearls were more popular than larger ones. Other white gemstones such as moonstone or opal are also very popular.

Diamond Cuts

Despite large diamonds being rare then, people began to wear diamond solitaires. Most diamonds were older mine or European cuts. Rose cut was also common. Modern diamond cuts such as the round brilliant weren’t invented until then.

Victorian Motifs

Bows, birds, snakes, and hearts were all popular Victorian motifs. The marquise shape of Navette was also very popular. It could be used as a gemstone or as part of the overall design. The bypass setting, also popular in this period, is another common option for modern styles.

Are you unsure which type of ring to get?

Don’t you know what kind of ring you should get if you plan on surprise proposals? Get help from your friends and family. Pinterest and Instagram are great places to find ideas.

To help narrow your search, you can ask basic style questions. Do you prefer geometric or nature-inspired patterns for your intended? You can have many diamonds set in intricate settings, or you can choose to have fewer stones in simple styles.


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