Antique Engagement Rings for the First time Buyer
Purchasing the perfect engagement ring is a hard task, with so many options available. People buying jewellery for the first time often find it hard to pick a design, and sometimes stick to simple designs even if they want to be imaginative. A great solution is to choose from various antique and vintage engagement rings available in the market today.
Antique engagement rings are rings that are over 100 years old. Their age, the minor flaws they gain after all these years, and their relatively cheaper price as compared to contemporary rings make them a popular choice for many couples.
Here are three types of vintage rings that buyers should keep in mind.
These rings were made from 1837 to 1901. Queen Victoria’s romanticism is reflected in the wide variety of ring designs that flourished in this period, ranging from simple cuts to intricate designs. They feature an elegant and romantic finish, with accents ranging from floral to bows.
Victorian ring designs were popular at a time when platinum was first discovered and mined in Russia, making the metal a common material in these rings.
The California Gold Rush and the opening of the first diamond mines in Africapaved the way for diversified jewellery designs that were accessible even to the growing middle class. Even today, authentic Victorian rings are cheaper than their contemporaries.
The social upheavals of the period also reflected a great deal on later designs. It is not uncommon to see rings with darker stones and barely any embellishments for rings made during the middle and later part of the era.
The Victorian look made such an impact on jewellery design that its influence can still be seen in later eras. The subtle prominence in cuts and finishes for rings and brooches can be observed throughout much of the Edwardian period.
Rings from this era were typical of the leisurely and extravagant atmosphere of the years before the Great War. They featured a return of very elaborate designs and a limited reintroduction of precious stones like diamonds and rubies. Edwardian-era rings are a good choice for people who can afford to splurge a little.
Platinum rings became much more commonplace during this time period than in the previous era – thanks to the introduction of acetylene torches. Platinum
sustain extremely high temperatures that torches make, giving jewellers more freedom in making elaborate embellishments for their rings.
Edwardian rings carry a sense of lasting beauty thanks to the material and the high level of craftsmanship during the era. With careful maintenance, these rings can last for centuries.
New technologies improved crafting techniques, giving these rings their signature appearance. ‘Filigree’, or bending metal into very intricate designs to make them look like woven lace, was made easier thanks to heat from torches. ‘Milgraining’, the addition of metal beads to form an eye-catching pattern across the ring, was also refined during the Edwardian period.
Radical Art Deco
The Roaring Twenties ushered in a new wave of jewellery inspired by the rise of the Machine Age and the growing appreciation for jazz and exotic lands of adventure. Rings from this period sport geometric shapes and are embellished with stones that accentuate these finishes. Many pieces take inspiration from prominent structures like Paris’ Eiffel Tower or New York’s Empire State Building, giving them a touch of urban class.
White gold first came into light during this period. Rings made with this metal worked well with the aesthetics of the time. White gold pieces from the Art Deco period are held in high regard due to their craftsmanship and ornate appearance.
Craftsmanship techniques were further harnessed during this era, thanks to refinement in technology brought about by the introduction of new machines. Filigree
designs became more complexin form. It is nearly impossible to replicate authentic Art Deco pieces with modern crafting techniques.
Antique rings offer a great alternative set of designs for buyers who wish to break away from the usual choice of engagement rings out in the market today.