Every love connection is unique, and every engagement ring celebrates its own one-of-a-kind story. While some people dream of the traditional diamond in a classic wedding ring setting, others long for something a little more out of the ordinary. Since there are a lot of options to consider, we’re breaking it all down from colored gems to diamond alternatives, embellishments to vintage settings. If you’re looking for an exceptional ring for your non-traditional bride, here’s everything you need to know in order to find a band as one-of-a-kind as your SO.
It’s important to first make sure that your SO truly wants to go the unusual route. No matter how out-of-the-box he or she might be, many people still dream of a classic wedding ring. If you’ve gotten confirmation that your future spouse wants a unique wedding ring, the first step is to find some inspo. If he or she has told you what they want, great! Utilize their guidelines to find something that shines. If they haven’t given you clues, elicit the help of their close friends who might have some insight. Finally, taking a peek at their Pinterest boards or in their jewelry box, as both are fantastic ways to figure out what type of metals, stones, or themes he or she likes. Chances are that there’s a hint or two somewhere that will guide you to the perfect unique ring!
Whether you have an idea about specific ring details or you just know he or she wants something out-of-the-box, there are tons of exceptional nontraditional ring possibilities. While it might be tricky coming across them at conventional jewelry stores, utilizing sites such as Etsy are a great way to find something more suitable.
If your SO still likes the look of a traditional diamond, but doesn’t want the common rock for cost, ethical, or general preferential reasons, diamond alternatives are fantastic options. Stones such as moissanite and white sapphires are perfect choices for a nontraditional stone that still looks traditional. Moissanite is one of the rarest minerals found in nature and the second hardest gemstone used in fine jewelry after diamonds (plus, it’s just as shiny as a diamond—if not more so). White sapphires are durable stones and look almost identical to diamonds when set and cost significantly less.
There’s just something about a diamond that many people love, which is why nontraditional engagement ring diamonds are a superb substitute for alternative couples. While you might know about yellow, pink, blue, and green diamonds, there are even more choices suitable for a unique bride or groom. Black, brown, and grey diamonds are magnificent choices for someone wanting to go a bit darker. Another interesting option is a salt-and-pepper diamond—these are diamonds with inclusions that make the rock look black and white. The best part about these speckled diamonds is that no two are alike, which is a fitting sentiment when finding a ring for your one true love,
Remember, there are many engagement ring styles, so don’t feel the pressure to go with a traditional diamond. There are more gemstone options if you like the idea of a main gem but want to steer clear of diamonds. If you’re after sparkle in bright shades, sapphire, emerald, ruby, garnet, olive green peridot, or the rare, blueish-purple tanzanite will provide plenty of shimmer and shine in a colored hue. If you aren’t looking for sparkle, but want lots of color and texture, turquoise or lapis lazuli are beautiful matte blue options, and onyx is a mystical, milky black, all ideal for anyone looking to make a statement with a beautiful ring. Finally, if you want a stone that has a touch of color or texture but from a glance looks traditional, opt for a pearl, opal, or a light pink-hued morganite for a traditional-meets-alternative look.
There’s no reason why you have to have a main stone in the first place. If your SO isn’t looking for a big rock, consider a ring without the bling. When choosing the wedding band, consider going for a different metal type, such as white gold, rose gold, sterling silver, platinum, or even titanium. There are lots of metal options available that also make for a beautiful ring. Traditional bands, such as claddagh rings or Celtic knots, carry on tradition in a less-Western way. Also consider delicate stacking bands or a simple, sophisticated band like the one that Mila Kunis wears. While the celeb has a traditional (and impressive) engagement ring, she never wears it. Instead, she rocks a thin (and inexpensive), platinum band from Etsy to showcase her love. You can also go for a simple wedding ring with a smaller stone, if you’re shopping for a minimalist bride.
Everything old is new again, especially when it comes to fashion. Whether you opt for a ring that’s actually from the past or it just looks the part, vintage style rings are a timeless option for a nontraditional bride or groom who still wants plenty of glamour. The best vintage engagement rings usually include ornate details, art deco designs, and bezel or pavé settings that exemplify decedent, old-world style.
Another great way to bring nontraditional elements into something as traditional as an engagement ring is by adding some unexpected glam and delicate details. Embellishments such as smaller stones on the band, intricate patterns carved into the shank, or an ornate gallery area can turn even the most traditional ring into something completely unique.
Whether it’s a diamond ring or a simple band, the most important component of a ring is the promise behind it — just make sure to select a piece that’s well-made, so that it lasts a lifetime.