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Vintage Engagement Rings

Vintage engagement rings are becoming increasingly popular. The trend started a few years back and is now stronger than ever.

We've always loved the idea of a vintage engagement ring, whether it's been passed down from one of the couple’s relatives, or previously owned and bought from an antique store.

vintage engagement rings

In today's disposable society, we often forget about sentimental value. We're all distracted by the whole 'newer is better' thing (which in some cases is true) and apply that thinking to personal sentiment and matters of the heart.

But a wedding engagement is a time when older things, especially those that tie us to our ancestors, are often more precious than anything that can be manufactured today.

There are so many really beautiful vintage rings out there in every conceivable style from diamond to emerald to sapphire and everything in between. Vintage rings are rich in history and a great choice for so many brides.

Why Vintage Engagement Rings?

Their uniqueness. In comparison to contemporary engagement rings they are seen as unique and unusual.

Their quality. In many cases vintage engagement rings were completely made by hand and intended to last for generations to come.

Their history. There's something romantic about wearing an engagement ring that has a rich history and came from another time and place.

Their style. Period style can be reinterpreted but it never quite lives up to the real thing.

Their value. Since they are in fact "used" items there can be substantial savings in buying vintage engagement rings as opposed to new ones.

Their 'greeness'.  Being 'green' is no longer just fashionable but a way of life for many who choose sustainability and eco-consciousness as a priority for their decision making.

Vintage Engagement Ring Considerations

4cs of diamonds

Vintage diamond engagement rings, especially ones that are antique come from a time when they didn't have the technology to spot internal flaws and inclusions so many of the stones would end up on the lower ends of today's grading scales for clarity. This would also be true for the other precious gemstones found in vintage rings.

Diamond color is another thing to know about it with vintage rings. At various times throughout history, diamonds with hints of color were favored over colorless stones so many of the diamonds found in vintage rings will rate very low on today's white diamond color scale.

So be aware of these differences but don't let them deter you from getting a vintage engagement ring, because you shouldn't measure things from a different era by today's standards.

That isn't to say that there aren't any high quality vintage diamond engagement rings, there certainly are—but you'll pay a premium for those and rightly so.

And think about it, is the diamond quality the main reason you're looking at vintage engagement rings?


Vintage engagement rings can be really spectacular and are definitely worth considering. They're antique pieces that come from periods in history where technologies, science and lifestyle were very different than what we know today so there are a few things beyond just the clarity and color of stones that you need to consider when looking at vintage rings.

Important Buying Tips: Vintage Engagement Rings

Many of these pieces never came with any sort of independent accreditation or certification so make sure that you only deal with top rated antique dealers or jewelers. A good way of knowing if the people you are dealing with are reputable is to see whether they have their pieces certified and can show you independent lab results along with the ring. If they don't, you really have no idea what you're getting.

Once you've chosen a ring, make sure that the setting is secure and that it has been checked out by a modern day jeweler who understands the requirements of today's active lifestyles. What may have been considered durable a hundred years ago might not make it through a week today.

Many vintage pieces have other gemstones along with, or instead of diamonds, so make sure that whatever stones are used are hard enough to withstand constant wear.

Do a little homework on diamond ratings, diamond shapes, and settings. It's especially important to understand these things when looking at vintage pieces because you'll be able to evaluate a ring beyond what a salesperson might tell you and really understand what you're buying.


Finally, if it's all about her personal sense of style and you can't find the perfect antique ring, consider vintage looking engagement rings as an option. They embrace the old world styles with modern day technologies and most designers and retailers today will have many pieces that fall nicely into this category.

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