Beginners Guide to Popular Ring Setting Styles: Which Is Right for You?

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With so much excitement surrounding your engagement, it’s easy to get lost in the endless plethora of trends and design options when it comes to picking your ring setting style. As your first official decision in the wedding-planning process, it can feel like the pressure is on to make the right choice. Making matters more complicated, the vast assortment of choices when it comes to ring setting designs can simply get overwhelming.

On the upside, the benefit of having so many options means you are guaranteed to find ring-setting ideas that complement your personal taste perfectly. Whether you prefer modern, vintage, eclectic, minimalist, or traditional, there is an engagement ring setting for every bride-to-be.

Whether you’re just starting to browse for options or have been struggling to land on the ring setting styles that suit your taste for a while now, we’re happy to help you find the one that is just right for you. Here are some of the most popular ring settings today and some helpful tips for choosing your perfect ring:

Prong Setting

Commonly known as solitaire rings, these engagement ring setting designs are all about focusing directly on the gemstone. This setting features a solid band with four to six prongs that hold the gemstone in place. The number of prongs depends on the cut of your gemstone, as well as how secure you want it to be. While one of the simplest settings, it is also one of the most timeless. With all kinds of trends in ring setting styles coming in and out of the mainstream over time, solitaire rings remain consistently popular.

There is a subtle romance about this setting that is crafted with the sole intent of highlighting the beauty and brilliance of the center gemstone. This ring setting is perfect for the elegant bride that appreciates iconic symbols of romance. Its clean design features less detail and no need for additional gemstones along the band, making this one of the more affordable ring setting ideas for brides on a budget.

Oval amethyst halo ring on a succulent

Halo Setting

When it comes to engagement rings, halo settings are another consistently popular choice among brides. Halo ring setting styles are favored among brides-to-be because they make the center gemstone appear larger than its actual carat weight. This is done by surrounding the center stone with a circle of pavé or micropavé accent stones. As a result, the center stone looks much bigger than it actually is, with the accent stones adding extra sparkle.

Halo ring setting designs come in assorted variations with differing shapes and sizes. They can be as simple as a delicate row of stones encircling the center gem or more detailed, featuring double halos and retro-inspired accent designs. With so many combinations, this is a versatile setting that can work for almost every bride — from contemporary to glam to traditional and everything in between.

Pavé Setting

Pavé (pronounced “pa-vay”) comes from the French word for “paved”, as in paved with gemstones. Pavé ring setting styles feature one or more rows of small gemstones on the surface of the ring band along the sides of the center stone. The surrounding metal is raised to form minimally-visible beads that surround the gemstones, securing them perfectly in place. The effect is one of continuous, eye-catching sparkle. The intricacy in pavé settings requires an expert jeweler with meticulous craftsmanship.

If you’re on the fence about a halo setting, a pavé setting might be an ideal alternative. It offers an elegant, classic twinkle without making too big of a statement. Pavé ring setting designs can be modern or vintage, depending on your design preferences.

Black onyx cathedral setting ring

Cathedral Setting

Named after the stunning arches of a cathedral, these exquisite ring setting styles use intricately-designed arches of metal extending from the shank to hold the center gemstone. This can be done through the use of prongs, bezels, tension, or a combination of several holding styles. The true defining characteristic of cathedral rings is the architectural look created by the arches used for mounting.

For the bride with a flair for the dramatics, cathedral ring settings are bonafide show-stoppers. The striking arches add height and allow for the addition of extra details on the crown of the ring. They accentuate the center gemstone beautifully and make for an attractive alternative to adding more diamonds — which can equate to cost savings.

Cluster Setting

Cluster ring setting styles feature two or more gemstones clustered tightly together. Sometimes they can be grouped together to give the illusion of a larger stone, using other stones of equal or varying sizes. However, more recently, asymmetrical cluster ring setting designs have been growing in popularity. These asymmetrical cluster rings feature gemstones of different shapes, sizes, and colors, creating a multi-stone focal point (as opposed to a single center stone).

Cluster rings offer interesting ring setting ideas with often unexpected combinations. Their unique combinations present an opportunity to incorporate sentimental stones like birthstones or heirloom gems. Non-traditional brides will absolutely love these unconventional, eye-catching ring settings.

Groom placing wedding ring on a bride’s hand

Say “I Do” to a Ring You’ll Adore

It’s not hard to see why newly engaged brides-to-be get quickly overwhelmed when it comes time to choose their ring setting style. Ultimately, it all comes down to personal preference, budget, and lifestyle. Remember to enjoy the process (seriously, this is just the beginning). Whether you opt for a timeless solitaire ring, a blinged-out halo, or a one-of-a-kind cluster setting that colors outside the lines, your ring will be as dazzling as the union it’s celebrating.

Besides, you can always bring in reinforcements. If you have any questions or find yourself struggling to find the right ring for you, our experts are here to help.

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