When choosing an eternity ring there are many styles and designs to choose from, but narrowing them down should be more straightforward if you consider some key aspects first…
Where am I going to wear it?
This might seem like a strange question, but it is worth thinking about, especially if you are planning to wear your eternity ring alongside an existing wedding and/or engagement ring. This can really help you narrow down the options as you are likely to prefer something that will complement the other rings. If your engagement ring has diamond set shoulders or your wedding ring is set with diamonds, then you may prefer to choose a setting style that matches, perhaps also with diamonds of the same size or grade; our jewellers will be able to help you with these details.
If your engagement and wedding rings have plain bands then their shape and style may still impact upon your choice of eternity ring. The setting on your engagement ring may mean that a flatter style will sit more neatly than one with higher settings, or if your engagement ring has a twist or large centrepiece you might prefer an eternity ring that is shaped to fit around it. There are a range of curved, crossover or wishbone styles available but if nothing is quite right then our workshop can create a bespoke piece deigned to sit perfectly.
How you wear your rings is personal choice; it often helps to try several rings on and get an idea of how they sit. Sometimes the rings themselves will tell you how they look best!
Do I want a full or half eternity band?
Most of our designs are available as either half-set or full-set options and which is right for you can depend on several factors. Most importantly, you should have the design that you like, but there are also some practical aspects worth thinking about. Full eternity rings are normally unsuitable for resizing meaning that if your finger alters in the future you could need to have the ring remade; incurring much greater cost than a more straightforward resizing. Half eternity rings also have limited resizing although minor alterations are usually possible. Most people do need to have their rings resized at some point, so it is important to be aware of any limitations to avoid annoying surprises later!
An advantage of full eternity designs is that if your rings tend to spin (a common problem if your knuckle is larger than the base of your finger) they allow you to wear the ring with confidence that your sparkling diamonds will always be visible. However, having diamonds set around the whole of the band does mean that there will always be diamonds and settings exposed to the increased chance of knocks that being on the underside of the finger creates: every shopping bag, steering wheel or door handle will be coming into contact with stones and settings. This increases the risk of damage and means settings may wear out more quickly, so you should anticipate a little more upkeep over the lifetime of the ring.
Many of our halt eternity rings are genuine 50% set bands, rather than only being set round the top third. This means that during wear none of the plain band is visible; the diamonds continue down the sides, giving the look of a full eternity in combination with the increased practicality of a half.
Do I want to add some colour?
While most customers opt for classic diamonds in their eternity band, some choose to incorporate coloured gemstones. This could be to match an existing ring, such as a sapphire engagement ring; to celebrate a special anniversary, such as a ruby wedding; or simply to add some colour. Sapphires and rubies are the most popular choices and their durability also makes them a practical option, although they will still wear more readily than diamond. Other gemstones may also be used; our jewellers can talk you through the options.
What setting style do I want?
There are lots of setting styles to choose from. The most popular is the channel setting, where the stones are set into the band and the outer edges hold them in place. This creates a low and smooth feel that is practical, easy to wear and comfortable, as well as giving a sleek, modern look. The low profile means these rings tend to sit well with other pieces, although those with larger diamonds will necessarily be deeper to accommodate the stones.
Grain setting is another low and practical style but instead of the edges of the band, ‘grains’ or small claws are raised to hold the stones. This adds a bit more detail to the design, and these bands are often finished with milgrain edging to add even more detail and create a stylish ‘vintage’ look. This type of setting is also particularly suited to bands with more complex shapes.
Classic claw setting remains a favoured style and there are now various alternative versions bringing the style up to date. Shared claw designs streamline the classic claw, bringing a simpler and more modern feel. Micro claw designs take this further, making the setting even more minimal. These designs make the setting a less visible part of the ring, with all the attention on the diamonds. Such settings are increasingly popular, but they do require additional care as their minimal nature offers less protection against wear and damage. Micro claw settings are usually quite low and sit well alongside other rings; more classic claw designs may be a little higher and less able to sit neatly, so it is always worth trying the rings on to ensure a satisfactory fit.
It is often best to try lots of styles on and see what you like. Our jewellers are happy to talk you through the different options and offer advice on what will work best for you. We have an extensive range of eternity rings in different styles available for you to try in our showroom; you can browse a selection of these on our website too.