You’ve probably considered investing in vintage-style jewelry and you probably own one or more pieces of jewelry that you consider vintage, but are you sure you’d be able to pick out a vintages style engagement ring?
If you are certain that you’d like a vintage-style engagement ring, it’s important to understand what the ideal of vintage style really means and what makes this style stand out. The reason why you need to pay attention to these styles is that vintage and antique jewelry styles are often confusing for many people, and you want to make the correct choice.
In this article, we take you through everything you need to know about vintage-style engagement rings and how to choose the best of these engagement rings.
What is a vintage engagement ring?
Not to be confused with the antique-style engagement rings that are more than 50 years old, and now anything made before the then early 1960s, vintage-style engagement rings are newer rings. The term ‘vintage style engagement ring being more of a conversational term that doesn’t always have any defined meaning.
Today, however, it is a term used to describe the rings that are styled to look like the rings originating from the older eras. These rings are reproductions, and a look at vintage-style rings shows that the ring fits the description of the term vintage, and in other cases, estate and antique styles.
It, therefore, means that some of the rings that are considered to be vintage-style rings are mostly antique ring styles from the older eras.
The brief history of vintage engagement rings
These ring styles represent the oldest styles of engagement rings that date back to the 17th century.
The history of these rings is believed to date back to between 1837 and 1901, during the Victorian Era. The Victorian Era is named after Queen Victoria, who ruled the British Empire during this period. What stands out from the Victorian Era and the queen’s time at the throne is the fact that Queen Victoria loved jewelry, with her exceptional taste in fashion and jewelry shaping the jewelry that was predominant at the time.
But the queen’s love for jewelry isn’t the reason for the popularity of the jewelry; the other thing that led to the popularity of the antique jewelry worn at the time is that there was an increase in the supply of gold in the mid-1800s. And Victorian jewelry from the time was mostly made in yellow gold. Diamond was discovered in South Africa around the same time, and it’s why diamonds were favored during the Victorian era. The jewelry of this time was, therefore, made with rows of diamonds and finished with ornate filigree designs and engravings.
The Victorian Era was followed by the Edwardian Antique Era between 1901 and 1920. This era is named after King Edward of Britain. The engagement rings from this time had a lot in common with the rings from the Victorian Era, but there was an increase in the use of platinum for the rings. The oxyacetylene torch had also been newly discovered, and the use of platinum became an industry standard. The common designs from this era include lacy and open filigree designs. Women’s fashion involved a lot of flowers, bows, as well as scrolls, and these complemented the silk dresses with laces and the feather-topped hats worn in the Edwardian Era. The platinum jewelry was set with diamonds and pearls for the sophisticated upper class.
The Edwardian Era was followed by the Art Deco Era between 1920 and 1935. In this era, the world was literally thrown off from the older way of life into this new era of flappers, gangsters, jazz, and speakeasies. The predominant style of jewelry worn at the time is what we now know as Art Deco jewelry, and it is believed to be the jewelry that was used as an expression of individuality by women from the time. The flowers and lacy scrolls were gone, and the new Art Deco engagement rings had more fun and playful feel delivered through the use of straight lines and geometric shapes. An example of the jewelry worn at this time is the cubist Picasso style, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the Empire State Building. There was also the use of newer alloys, and platinum was replaced by the less expensive white gold.
Are vintage engagement rings popular?
Today, vintage-style engagement rings are quite popular among most modern brides. These rings are mostly made of sapphires, rubies, and emeralds, and the bar this rustic, raw, and a rather rough-cut diamond design.
If you are looking for a way of bringing in something different but with a vintage feel to it, then a vintage-style engagement ring would be an excellent fit for you.
The pros and cons of vintage style engagement ring
Vintage-style engagement rings are a stunning type of jewelry that is uniquely designed with all its features borrowed from the older styles of jewelry from the Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Deco Styles.
These rings are distinct, and they have fine detailing, which their main features are showing a high degree of craftsmanship. They are, therefore, a good fit for individuals who are into old-style or persons whose love story and romance carry that charm of the past.
The pros and cons of this style are as follows:
Pros of the vintage-style engagement rings
- These rings carry a rich history, and there is longevity in their symbolism, allowing for an embodiment of the richness of your relationship.
- Authentic, second-hand vintage engagement rings are quite valuable.
- Unique designs, even for the replicated pieces. They often show a high level of craftsmanship.
- They are often made of conflict-free diamonds
- The settings are eco-friendly
- The older stones are dull – though they have large stones, the cuts on the diamonds are not brilliant with little internal light reflection.
- Most of them have white discolorations because diamonds with yellow tints were preferred in the past.
- They are not very durable
- High maintenance costs
Should you buy a vintage-style engagement ring?
Vintage-style engagement rings aren’t for everyone, but if these ring styles match your style and personality, you will be happy with the good variety on the market today. If you are into this kind of jewelry, you will like the richness of history they carry, the individualized character to the pieces, and their timeless beauty, plus their ever-elegant appeal.
This style of jewelry is not for everyone and most of the vintage-style engagement rings on the market today are reproductions, but if you are looking for jewelry that shows your kind of love and appreciation for history, this style would be a good fit for you.
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Stephanie is a jewelry lover when she was a teenager. Her major was fashion design when she was in college. She is a jewelry designer at SOQ Jewelry and other design companies. Now she is also a writer for our website. She writes a lot of designs&brands posts with very actionable tips.