Karen Walker Atelier True Love suite

We’ve spoken to a selection of our favourite jewellery designers to find out what their current picks for engagement rings are and what the predominant buying habits are for couples. It turns out majority of couples are choosing, designing and buying their dream rings together (engagement rings included), which we think is a beautiful way to start the wedding and marriage journey. Prepare to be dazzled below and remember this is only part one, we have more beauty to come…

1. Zoe and Morgan Thoughtfully designed to celebrate individuality and made so that your jewellery can be treasured for life and for you to enjoy on your own adventure.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

I love the Mon Cheri ring as the diamond is an emerald cut, which is less traditional than the round brilliant cut. It is a 1 carat stone, but looks delicate and understated on.

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

Our Green Tourmaline ring from the One Of A Kind page is a favourite, green stones are related to the heart chakra, and I love the double band.     

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

It would be a bespoke design, as I like to wear something unique – in our bespoke service we listen to each individual and the creation is born from that experience.   

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? 

We attract a wide range of couples and try to not set any boundaries – Modern love is inclusive of couples getting married, gay couples, singles deciding to commit to their self love, or land mark occassions. The jewellery industry is quite old fashioned in their language towards brides, and what we find through connecting with our customers, is that there are lots of reasons to celebrate love, and it doesn’t alway mean a wedding. Our customers are intelligent, curious people, and they want to purchase items to last a lifetime, and tell their stories. 

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

Customers are interested in choosing a product that has been responsibly produced. A timeless design will always be a good choice, but it’s more than that. We need to also know where the metal comes from (we use recycled metal) and why the stones have been chosen (lots of options here). Customers  are consciously choosing what feels right, and aligns with personal values. Its great!

2. Coco Florence Home to gorgeous vintage and antique jewellery, we connect you with the timeless craftsmanship of a bygone era.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

Venitia -a timeless three stone engagement ring 

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s? 

The Honora ring – a sweet mix of diamonds and sapphires 

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

Florentina – a classic art deco solitaire with a party jacket to dress her up when needed 

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

I generally find couples come together to purchase an engagement ring, with some males having quite a lot of input and others just happy for their partner to choose.  I have been very surprised by the amount of men who have also  reached out to me to purchase an engagement ring without their partner having any input. I love that. I guess approximately 70/30.

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

I can’t comment on the style of ring so much as I truly find in my business that I sell a real mix of classic and unique engagement rings so I haven’t really seen a trend as such. However what I do hear more and more is that people are drawn towards the idea of buying something sustainable and with our environment in mind. Buying antique and vintage engagement rings means no new diamonds have had to be mined. I think we are all wanting to be more conscious consumers.

3. Cushla Whiting A fine jeweller creating elegant and unique designs. Each piece of Jewellery is crafted to wear over a lifetime.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

The ZIA ring is a perfect option for a timeless, but modern looking engagement ring. This minimalist design can hold any shape or colour gemstone or diamond and can be easily paired with many styles of bands if you decide to stack more rings in the future. This means that you can dress it up how you like depending on what look you are wanting in the different chapters of your life.

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

This is a difficult question as all of our designs look good with coloured stones. I personally love using the coloured stones in the three stone designs like the MAYA, CLOVER and DELILAH for example, as the bright white diamond side stones really lift the colour and brightness of the coloured stone in the centre.

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

There have been a few ultimates over the years…so hard to choose! At the moment I am really loving our NIM ring, which works really well with any oval or emerald cut stone. It’s super modern and minimal, but classic at the same time. I love that you can fit an open wedding between the double bands and completely change the look. I think it comes down to the individual at the end of the day, as there is a ring for each person and as no two people are the same, no two rings are the same. People will gravitate naturally to the gemstone and design that fits them.

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

I think the ratio must be getting close to 50/50 now as more and more couples are opting for the modern choice of sharing the experience of choosing the ring together – this can be before or after the proposal. I think it comes down to individuals today wanting to recognise their uniqueness in designing an engagement ring that fits them. Modern couples often see this as a ring for both of them so it’s nice to both be involved in the process. Of course, there are still plenty of people who want to take a more traditional and romantic approach selecting the ring for their partners in secret – hard to beat a surprise proposal! 

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

People are really loving our asymmetrical two-stone rings at the moment, such as our YOU & ME, OCTAVIA or AYLA rings. The two stone ring is very symbolic of the unique but complementary dynamic in a relationship between two people. It allows you to mix and match two different precious gems; their differences working harmoniously together to create a really unique overall form. I think that this is a sign that people now more than ever are wanting to express their individuality, they don’t want a ring that thousands of other people are going to have. This is why bespoke rings are becoming so popular as people have the opportunity to create something completely unique to them.

4. Grew & Co With gems and precious metals sourced from the world over, the Grew & Co team are artists who transform the special moments in your life into wearable fine art.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

A three stone ring is always a beautiful classic. Our Tia Ring features a trio of brilliant cut white diamonds which pairs perfectly with any style of wedding band. 

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

We love the Australian parti sapphire! The colour is amazing as there is usually a presence of 2 to 3 colours in the one stone, especially when it’s combined with a unique cut, like our Orla Hex. These are custom cut just for us, to make this lovely geometric design. 

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

Our Banks Ring. We catch ourselves trying it on whenever we have the chance, the Ceylon sapphire and diamond combination are absolutely stunning!

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

Our bespoke process is very hands on, so many couples choose to come in together to design with us. Choosing your stone from a selection that is curated just for you, is such a unique opportunity that it’s a hard one to resist.  We do also love the element of surprise, so the rest of the process is often continued with one partner.

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

We have noticed that more and more people are excited by coloured stones and unique cuts, just like us. Choosing something special for your loved one becomes an even more exciting journey when you have a vast array of colour and styles to choose from.

5. Karen Walker A Jewellery collection built on champagne diamonds, black diamonds, peach morganite, rutilated quartz and grey or peach moonstones, cast in white, yellow or rose gold.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

The most timeless, classic ring in our range would have to be the Forever Ring. It’s super simple but has a wee twist in the way the stone’s set. I’d go with white diamond + yellow gold.

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

The Euphoria Ring with rutilated quartz.  It’s a stone you don’t often see and every one is different so you’ll never, ever find anyone with the same ring as you.

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

The True Love Ring with the True Love Band as a wedding band. For me,  it’s the ne plus ultra of the range.

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

Three out of four times it’s the couple viewing  together which is so romantic, having both parties involved in the process together. 

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

Whilst the classic white diamond solitaire is always charming I do love playing with unusual shapes in the setting. Also, playing with semi-precious stones allows us to work with scale much more so than we can with  diamonds and that’s great fun.  We’re seeing our customers are eager to take on these slightly more adventurous approaches to their rings.

6. Love In A Jewel Specializing in Engagement Rings and Wedding Bands taking inspiration from the beauty of the stones and the clients personal style, transforming exceptional diamonds and gem stones into legendary jewels.

From your collection what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

For a stand out ring it would have to be our three stone setting with the middle stone being one carat and two half carats either side. It’s so beautiful and an impressive show of diamonds. You can’t miss it, it really catches the light!

From your collection what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

Coloured stones are a great way to express your individuality. For us our top pick at the moment would be a forest or sage green sapphire but it’s a really personal choice. If you look at the fashion runways there are alot of modern colour palettes emerging and these gorgeous colours can also be found in gemstones. 

For example on the runways we have seen Cerulean blue (which you can find in a London Blue Topaz), Sage Green (a gorgeous modern tone which you can find in a Green Tormaline), Turmeric yellow which you can find in a yellow sapphire or topaz. 

Colour is exciting and if you are designing a cocktail ring which you will only wear occassionally you can have some fun and create something totally unique. If it’s an engagement ring, this is slow fashion
so you have to know you will love the colour forever. Sometimes it is hard to know what you want so we recommend researching the latest runway fashion to see what colours connect with you and then we will do our best to find the gems stones to match the colours you love! 

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection, what would it be?

I think it would have to be the three stone diamond ring set in platinum with a total of 2 carat of diamonds. It’s timeless, it’s all about the diamonds and the platinum means it will always look beautiful and never need rhodium plating!

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

Yes, one of the things we love the most about creating bespoke engagement rings and wedding bands is getting to know our couples. Our Master Jeweller meets with them both and talks about what their dream rings look like, what stones they love, he works to their budget and then involves them both in every step of the way. From choosing the diamonds together, to us sending them photos of their rings coming to life on the bench. It’s very personal and there is alot of involvement. Plus LOVE IN A JEWEL offer a unique service to our couples called “The Making”. They can come in and help make the ring for their partner. Joachim talks them through the process and then they put on the googles and melt the gold and then roll it. It’s really special to be able to say you helped make the ring which is going to mean so much to the other person for their whole life. We love this part of the process and it’s always a bit of fun. It’s a special time in a couples life and a time we feel honoured to be a part of. The start of their journey together – so we make sure it’s an experience to treasure. Because of this we have almost 100% couples coming in together.

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

We see the trend moving towards bigger diamonds, more out there in size and quality. If you look back on what our parents or grandparents had it was very common to have quite small diamonds so the trend has definately moved towards bigger. 

Why? Well that’s a big question but I guess it’s not like a pair of designer sunglasses that you change every season – this is something you have to love forever so it is part of creating a beautiful memory, a decision you will always be happy with. Also sentiment is a huge part of what makes jewellery so special. It’s why we called ourselves LOVE IN A JEWEL because we believe that sentiment and the memories and love which is connected to jewellery is what makes it truly precious.So that is why we like to involve couples in “The Making” – creating these memories becomes part of their story, another reason why their rings are unique and treasured by them. At the end of the day it’s not really about having the biggest stones or the latest modern design…it’s about the love which is connected to the jewellery. That is the jewellery we treasure forever. 

For that reason we can also melt the gold of heirloom jewellery to be used in pieces if people would like that. It adds another sentimental layer to the piece. That is jewellery with real heart and that’s what we are all about.

7. Melanie Katsalidis Objects of quality that honour rare and precious materials. These enduring pieces transcend trend, time and style to become a cherished part of my client’s personal journey.

From your collection/s what is your current top pick for a timeless engagement ring?

Instead of timeless, I prefer the terms ‘future heirloom’ or ‘future classic’. That is, something that will stand the test of time and transcend trends. Good design is enduring. Within my engagement ring collection, my Elevate style is my own personal response to this. It’s a unique take on the solitaire that gives a floating appearance of the gem in side profile, allowing you to see it in all it’s sparkly glory. The White Gold Hexagonal Diamond Ring is a great example of this style and the geometric step cut diamond is so architectural and striking, you would never get sick of staring into this stunner as it resides on your finger.

From your collection/s what is your top pick for an engagement ring with a coloured stone/s?

My new Love Ritual collection celebrates the engagement ring. My Three Stone Round Parti Sapphire Ring is quickly proving to be a bestseller. I take pride in championing Australian coloured gemstones and the parti sapphire is a personal favourite. No two are the same. The different lights and angles present new personalities within each stone. For me, the rich flashes of blue, green and yellow present in these gems represent elements within the Australian landscape: sky, water and sand.

If you had to choose your ultimate engagement ring from your collection/s, what would it be?

I love alternative diamonds and my Salt and Pepper Diamond Double Halo Ring is the ultimate engagement ring. The central salt and pepper diamond contains a galaxy of unique inclusions that create character – carefully cut into a stepped hexagon. Surrounding and enhancing this form are two rows of sparkling black and white diamonds. The band itself is enhanced with these same monochrome diamonds to create a dazzling but sophisticated effect. Something that harks back to the Art Deco era but is firmly planted in the present. 

Do you find couples often design/choose engagement rings together or does only one person come in to choose? What is the ratio for you? 

More often than not, I see couples come in together to celebrate their engagement. It’s a joy to celebrate their love with them as they explore the collection together. Then typically, in hetrosexual couples, the man will come back on his own to make a selection or begin a bespoke commission based on his fiance’s response to the collection. It’s romantic and we love to be a small part of their love story.

Where do you think engagement ring trends are currently heading and why?

I’ve noticed there are some current strong recurring trends with my clients coming in for engagement rings. Yellow and rose gold are the most popular metal choices. Halos are much loved – especially with white or black diamonds. Geometric cut white diamonds, though hard to find, are really resonating with my clients due to their architectural nature and unique look. Claws are generally more popular than bezels for solitaire styles and finer, more refined styles are preferred over a heavier or chunkier look.

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