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Emerson & Farrar Fine Jewelry carries a curated selection of Victorian, Edwardian and Art Nouveau antique engagement rings in Palm Springs.
Rings that are 100 years old or older are categorized as antique. Considering their age and the story they carry with them, antique engagement rings are beautiful heirlooms that will last several lifetimes if given additional care.
Couples that value history, tradition, Old World craftsmanship and jewelry of unique beauty will love antique engagement rings. These rings were die-struck or made by hand, with skill that is rarely found today. Romantic brides also cherish the historical appeal of these rings.
There are some important features of antique engagement rings that you should note as you go searching for the ring to celebrate your love.
Metals of choice used in antique engagement rings were gold, silver and platinum.
One of the most important considerations is that Old World jewelers didn’t have access to the advanced technology available today. That means that diamonds were cut by hand, with fewer or different facets in comparison to today’s practices. The result was that diamond scintillation or sparkle came in larger flashes, as opposed to the glittery sparkle of modern brilliant-cut diamonds.
Overall, diamonds were perceived differently a hundred or more years ago. They were cut by hand, but they were also graded and inspected with tools and equipment that wasn’t as advanced as today. You should bear in mind that it’s not always possible to apply the 4 C’s scale to assess a diamond mounted in an antique ring. This is because diamonds can only be precisely graded when they are loose. However, taking a diamond out from an antique ring would compromise the ring’s integrity.
Similarly to other rings, regular and proper care and maintenance is vital to preserving the beauty and longevity of an antique engagement ring. Due to their age, some antique rings could be more delicate than new rings. Therefore, attention and caution with daily wear is advised.
Antique engagement rings that you can find today originate from as far back as the 18th century.
The rarest antique engagement rings in Palm Springs belong to the Georgian period. This period lasted from 1740 to 1830. Rings were made by hand and fashioned in 18K gold and silver. Prominent features include bows and scrolls. Diamonds were hand-cut and set in silver to enhance their candlelight scintillation. They were also backed in gold to prevent silver from tarnishing.
After the Georgian period, came the Victorian age, which stretched from 1935 to 1900. It was during the reign of Queen Victoria that diamond mines were discovered in South Africa. This supply increased the use of diamonds in jewelry. It was in this period that the diamond solitaire was first introduced and popularized. Platinum was the preferred metal. Motifs ranged from nature to classic romantic motifs like ribbons, knots, bows and scrolls. There were also many Egyptian, Etruscan, Celtic, Roman and Greek motifs, due to numerous archaeological discoveries.
Edwardian period succeeded the Victorian era and lasted from 1900 to 1915. The design from this period is typically light and airy, intricately feminine. Platinum was prized because of its unrivaled durability and strength. Edwardian jewelry often featured filigree and enameling.
The Edwardian period slightly overlapped with Art Nouveau (1895 – 1915). What sets Art Nouveau apart from the neighboring periods is its preference for natural motifs and nude female form. Engagement rings from this period are marked by fluidity and gracefulness of the lines. Popular jewelry techniques were enameling and plique-a-jour.
If you are unsure about the amount of caution and care necessary to maintain the beauty and durability of an antique engagement ring, there is an alternative. Opting for a Van Craeynest die-struck engagement ring, you can get the design of an antique piece without the extra maintenance and care requirements. Van Craeynest engagement rings are made in Emerson & Farrar factory, and what’s important is they are made from die-struck molds originating from 100 or more years ago.
Emerson & Farrar Fine Jewelry showroom is housed in the Tower of the former Oasis Hotel, on 125 South Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs. We would love to meet you to show you the exceptional collection of antique engagement rings we have. More than just jewelry, we offer you a whole experience of choosing a ring with the guidance and support of our attentive, knowledgeable and kind staff. We welcome you!Contact Us Today