When most of us think of a proposal, we think of a diamond ring. Diamond engagement rings are considered the classic choice. But the tradition isn’t as timeless as you might think. Diamond engagement rings didn’t become standard until the 1930s when a remarkably successful marketing campaign brought them to the forefront.
In previous generations — and even today — couples have selected from a wide variety of gemstone engagement rings. Gemstone jewelry has been a favored choice for thousands of years. Each gemstone has a unique appearance, personal significance and symbolic meaning.
A one-of-a-kind gemstone engagement ring is the ideal choice for a one-of-a-kind bride.
Why Are Gemstone Rings Desirable?
For some, nontraditional gemstone engagement rings can be more appealing than diamonds. When you select a diamond alternative, you save money that can be put toward a dream wedding or honeymoon or the future you plan to build together. An unconventional ring also stands out as an individualized keepsake with heartfelt, personal meaning.
If you’re a couple that likes to think outside the box, your bride deserves an engagement ring as unique as she is. With an unconventional gemstone engagement ring, you and your future wife can make a statement and set yourselves apart from the crowd. One-of-a-kind gemstone jewelry is as special as your bride-to-be.
There’s no denying the dazzling beauty and glamour of diamond jewelry. There’s also no denying the fact that diamonds cost a fortune. Diamond jewelry is significantly more expensive than other types of gemstone jewelry.
Many couples opt for nontraditional gemstone engagement rings to save money for other meaningful purchases. Here are a few examples:
- Save for the Future: For a growing number of modern couples, saving for the future is a more important priority than spending a small fortune on a diamond ring. When two people decide they want to spend the rest of their lives together, their commitment to one another is what makes the gesture meaningful.
For many, the cost of the ring doesn’t matter nearly as much as the true love and devotion it signifies. One partner doesn’t need to spend half their salary to “prove” their feelings for their partner; in a happy relationship, both partners prove their love and commitment to one another every single day.
For this reason, more couples are choosing less conventional gemstone engagement rings and putting the money they save toward their future together.
- Save for the Wedding: Weddings are expensive. Yet for many of us, our wedding day is one of the most memorable and monumental days of our lives. It’s called “the big day” for a reason.
Though it would be nice to spare no expense when planning the wedding of our dreams, most of us don’t have that luxury. Our love may know no bounds, but our bank accounts aren’t nearly as never-ending.
Prioritizing where we want to spend our hard-earned savings is a necessary part of life. Some future brides and grooms determine they would rather put their money toward a lavish dream wedding than a high-priced engagement ring.
- Travel: Similarly, many couples decide they would rather go on a life-changing trip together than buy an extravagant ring. Traveling is costly, but the experience is unparalleled and the memories you share truly last a lifetime.
Many newlyweds dream of taking off together on an adventure. By saving money on the engagement ring, you can make that dream come true.
- Buy a Home: If you’re going to spend the rest of your lives together, you’re going to need a place to live. Though many couples live together before tying the knot, most young couples can’t afford to buy a home.
Home-ownership can seem like a distant dream. However, if you save money by opting for a diamond-alternative engagement ring, that dream won’t be as far out of reach.
Individuality and Personal Meaning
A gemstone engagement ring with personal, symbolic or sentimental meaning is a heartfelt expression of love and devotion.
Birthstone engagement rings are a time-honored favorite for those who desire a traditional engagement ring with a personal touch.
In some families, a specific gemstone is considered a symbol of the family itself. Each gemstone has its own symbolic meaning, so there’s a gemstone to suit any family’s distinct characteristics.
A sapphire, for instance, symbolizes wisdom and virtue. A family that prides itself on these values might establish a tradition of sapphire jewelry keepsakes.
Each gemstone has a distinct, symbolic meaning, so gemstone jewelry is an expression of individuality.
A unique gemstone engagement ring is a thoughtful way to pay tribute to the personal characteristics you value in your bride-to-be. The pearl, for instance, represents loyalty, integrity and generosity.
Morganite is associated with the heart chakra. According to ancient spiritual beliefs, the heart chakra is linked to beauty, love and compassion.
A gemstone can also commemorate your feelings for your beloved. Blue topaz, for example, is a symbol of love, loyalty, friendship and affection.
Options for Gemstone Engagement Rings
With so many incredible gemstones to choose from, making the right choice can be exhilarating and overwhelming. Here are six gemstone engagement rings sure to please the unconventional bride-to-be.
Diamonds may be the traditional choice for engagement rings today, but that hasn’t always been the case. For centuries, sapphires were the gem of choice.
Sapphire engagement rings became a tradition as far back as the 14th century. Although diamonds have superseded their popularity in recent decades, many couples are still drawn to the breathtaking allure of sapphire gemstones.
- Prince William and Duchess Kate: When Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton in 2011, he offered her his mother’s stunning blue sapphire and diamond engagement ring.
The proposal was a moving, heartfelt tribute to his late mother, the beloved Princess Diana. It was also a meaningful way of showing his intended just how much she meant to him.
The ring had deeply personal, sentimental meaning, which added to the striking, unique beauty of the ring itself.
With its brilliant red color, ruby jewelry evokes passion, love and romance. The beautiful intensity of a ruby engagement ring is sure to make the hopelessly romantic bride-to-be swoon with desire and anticipation.
Emerald, one of the most sought-after gemstones, is bold and breathtaking. Style icons from Cleopatra to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis have made a statement with eye-catching emerald gemstone jewelry. President John F. Kennedy proposed to Jackie with an astonishing emerald and diamond engagement ring.
When we think of timeless elegance, many of us think of the graceful Audrey Hepburn. For her signature role in the classic film Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Hepburn wore an iconic, five-strand pearl necklace.
To this day, pearl jewelry remains a quintessential fashion choice. A pearl engagement ring is a sophisticated and delightfully charming selection for the classically glamorous bride-to-be.
Morganite is one of the most popular diamond alternatives, and it’s easy to see why. Morganite gemstones appear soft and feminine with a delicate, rose-pink hue.
The warm, blush-pink stones look worthy of a princess, especially in a rose-gold setting. A rose gold and morganite gemstone engagement ring is a classic choice with an exquisite, romantic allure.
Reasonably priced and available in a broad spectrum of magnificent colors, topaz jewelry is among the most popular gemstone jewelry.
Classic white topaz is an appealing diamond alternative. White topaz jewelry can look like diamond jewelry but is significantly less costly.
Topaz is a remarkably hard, scratch-resistant stone, so it’s nearly as durable as a diamond. They say a diamond is forever, but a white topaz ring is likely just as enduring and far more affordable.
Stunning topaz jewelry is available in virtually any color imaginable. Each color variation has a unique aesthetic appeal and symbolic meaning, so topaz engagement rings are ideal for the bride-to-be who desires a personalized ring selected just for her.
Blue topaz gemstones in a white gold setting have an ethereal, dream-like quality that will make your intended feel as though she’s floating on a cloud.
Happily Ever After
Although most of us think of diamonds as the de facto choice for engagement rings, many modern couples are opting for alternative gemstone engagement rings. Diamond alternatives are less expensive and more unique, which makes them appealing for couples who want to save money for the future or stand apart from the rest.
For thousands of years, gemstones like rubies and emeralds have been prized symbols of love and loyalty. These nonconventional gemstone engagement rings are a romantic declaration of individuality and commitment.