Being in the diamond and jewellery trade for many years, I’ve grown to be sensitive to trends, both micro and large. And let me tell you solitaires are trending stronger than we’ve ever seen.
Being intrigued by this we’ve been having countless chats with visitors to understand why the classic solitaire is as appealing as it’s ever been in 2017.
Reason 1 - A solitaire is the quintessential engagement ring style.
Let’s rewind back to when you were 16. Or whenever you weren’t actively browsing engagement ring designs.
If I asked you to close your eyes and imagine an engagement ring, what would it be?
Most probably a simple ring, set with a single diamond, right?
That’s a solitaire. Evergreen and timeless.
Solitaires never go out of style, they work on any size hand/finger, and no one will need to guess what your relationship status is. It’s obviously an engagement ring.
Reason #2 - “I want the focus to be on the diamond.”
Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise - diamonds are as popular as ever. There was a sweep of stories around 12 months ago mostly just click bait that extrapolated that millennials don’t buy diamonds after a Lesedi La Rona a 1109,00ct uncut diamond didn’t fetch the expected price of $70 000 000 on auction. How on earth that transformed into Millennials not buying diamonds - no idea.
With information being more readily available than ever, the world’s fascination with diamonds doesn’t seem to be slowing down at all.
There’s something extremely humbling about holding a diamond in your hand.
They witnessed the miraculous evolution of basic algae to modern human life. They felt the violent split of the supercontinent Pangea into the seven continents we know today. They shivered through the Ice Ages. Survived the trampling of the Dinosaurs. Heard the earth’s heartbeat grow quiet through many mass extinctions.
And then you get to cherry pick one that surfaced? Over a billion (B!) years down the line… how is that not the best thing you’ve heard all day?
Reason #3: “I prefer a simple and minimalistic approach to design”
Whether Jay’s bestselling book “The Joy of Less” inspired you or you’ve grown frustrated with low quality, mass produced products that are built to fail - people are simplifying, and a good design is a facilitation in this shift.
Although detailed and intricate engagement rings are far from unpopular, we’re seeing a strong shift toward consciously choosing a simpler setting that you’d feel equally comfortable wearing on your not-so-formal trip to Croatia and Gary’s black tie wedding in October.
Recommended Reading; "Choosing A Custom Engagement Ring Design – Personal Style and Budget" (blog link)
Important side note; Solitaires aren’t basic and simple by definition. You can still do a stunningly extravagant design set with a single diamond. This is merely the best starting point for people interested in minimalistic designs.
Reason #4 Versatility
Solitaires are unrivaled when it comes practical versatility;
They pair up stunningly with most wedding bands. Since the engagement ring didn’t set a very defined style, you’re free to play with classic, vintage and bolder band combinations. They all look great. Scan through our Instagram page (link) and you’ll see tons of pretty engagement ring and wedding band combinations.
They keep wear and tear to a minimum by not having large areas with intricate metalwork.
You can play around with metal colour combinations. If you have a large rose gold engagement ring, a Platinum band might look like an afterthought. Since the engagement ring’s band would probably be as thick as any additional bands you’re free to change up the colour of your bands.
Stack rings (multiple complementary diamond bands) work stunningly with solitaires. If you have 2 or three bands you can easily dress your ring up or down for any occasion.
Reason #5; They’re a safe bet for gents on solo missions.
Let me tell you a quick story.
We had a customer, let’s call him Shawn, that insisted on having a castle themed engagement ring design. I was quick to ask if he’s girlfriend knew about this plan. He shrugged off the question and asked me to stick to making his design, without further input. The castle was a symbol of the strength of their love. Cringe goosebumps to this day!
Pro Tip; We work with hundreds of couples per month and have a very good idea of which designs are guaranteed to be remade after the proposal.
*Pretty much the design he had in mind.
Fast forward three weeks and Shawn was on his knee asking Mary to marry him. She gave him a conditional yes… “I’ll marry you, but I’m not wearing this ring”. True story.
Five days later her new design was done - with no castle theme in sight.
If a gent is unsure about engagement ring styles we always recommend a platinum (or another white metal) solitaire. If she loves vintage designs she can add a vintage band. If she wants some added size and with - make some broad complementary bands.
And if she really doesn’t like a solitaire… you’ll be surprised to learn we offer 100% credit for your raw materials. Remaking it into a more elaborate design is very cost effective since you haven't paid for 100 hours of specialist labour.
Solitaires are also easy to resize if the fit isn't perfect.
Recommended reading; "Should Your Girlfriend Be Involved In The Engagement Ring Buying Process?" (blog link)
Interested in a solitaire?
If you’re looking for full blown custom designs we’ll gladly assist. 70%+ of our work is custom and I’ll have a designer reach out to you. You’ll be working one-on-one with the best jewellery designers in South Africa.
For any questions feel free to reach out on firstname.lastname@example.org
Co-founder & Owner.