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Engagement Ring Styles and Settings

6 Major Diamond Ring Styles


Throughout time, there have been 6 major diamond ring styles that have evolved since the engagement ring first became a symbol of love and commitment between two people. In order to design the engagement ring that represents you and the unique love between you and your partner, understanding each major style is important.

Style and setting are two key terms to understand when buying an engagement ring. While closely related and often used interchangeably, these terms actually differ in meaning and each will greatly influence the overall look of your ring in two very important ways. When referring to engagement rings, the style of the ring represents its general look and feel, while the setting represents the physical component of the ring being used to hold the gem or diamond onto the ring band.

  • Classic

    A center stone with shoulders lined with diamonds set closely together. Diamonds can extend half way down the ring or three quarters of the way. It is ideal for those who want to add a little sparkle to a beautiful center diamond.

  • Solitaire

    This ring style features one central stone. It is ideal for those who want to concentrate on one stunning diamond.

  • Halo

    A center diamond is surrounded by a "halo" of smaller diamonds. It is ideal for those who love sparkle. It makes the central stone look larger too.

  • Three Stone

    One center stone flanked by two side stones of the same or slightly different size and shape. Ideal for those who like the idea that each stone represents a part of the journey... "Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow".

  • Vintage

    Past Art Deco and Edwardian eras inspire engraving and romantic designs throughout the ring. Ideal for those who want a design inspired by the past.

  • Modern

    The center diamond is held by a bezel in who or in part and the ring style features free flowing lines. Ideal for those who like clean contemporary lines.

Relating Style to Setting

engagement ring guideWhile style is the overall look and feel of your ring, settings themselves are what encase the stones of the ring, making it structurally sound. When it comes to style and setting and how they work together to create the overall look of your beautiful and unique ring, keep in mind that each style can be achieved using different settings.


When you begin the process of designing that one of a kind engagement ring, your designer must consider certain technical rules depending on the setting. In other words, upon deciding what look or style you want to go with, you will then be asked by your designer to choose a setting that works well with the style that you have chosen.

Recommended Settings for Solitaire, Halo and Three Stone Engagement Rings

The diamonds for these types of engagement ring styles are generally set using one the following settings (in this case, for the Halo style, we are referring to the setting of the diamond centerpiece):

  • Prongs – each gemstone is secured with metal prongs
  • Bezel – a vertical rim of metal surrounds the sides of the stones, holding them in place
  • Cathedral – metal arches extend upward towards the diamond and frame it
  • Tension – this setting uses the pressure of compression between two or more points to hold the diamond in place

Recommended Settings for Classic and Modern Rings

For these engagement ring styles, your designer would have the option to work with the following settings (here, for the Halo, we are referring to the ring of diamonds around the central stone):

  • Micro pave – a technique of setting small diamonds with individual claws in multiple rows on the shoulders of the ring; this technique is only possible using high magnification.
  • Channel – a setting in which diamond accents are placed between two rows of metal on both sides, creating a channel. This is a heavier setting.
  • Bezel – for modern rings – this setting requires the diamond to be suspended or surrounded by metal.

If you have decided that custom design is right for your loved one, it is important to understand how style and setting will affect the look of your unique ring and to know all your options. For more information, schedule a free consultation where we will go over these elements as well as many more to ensure that you are on the right track to designing the engagement ring of her dreams, all within your budget.

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