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Emerson Fine Jewelry offers exceptional collection of antique engagement rings from the Victorian, Edwardian and Art Deco eras.
When a ring has been previously worn and is over 100 years old, we call it ‘antique’. Antique engagement rings are a wonderful piece of history that need extra care and attention due to their delicate nature. When cared for properly, antique engagement rings will last several lifetimes.
Antique engagement rings are ideal for the couple that cherishes history, craftsmanship, and wants something rare. Coming with a story of their own, antique engagement rings are truly one of a kind. They have been passed down for generations and the romantic bride will appreciate this particular heirloom aura.
When you’re looking for an antique engagement ring, you should be aware of some important differences between antique engagement rings, vintage and modern engagement rings.
First of all, diamonds are perceived differently. It’s not always possible to grade the quality of diamonds in antique jewelry using the 4 C’s scale – carat, cut, color, clarity. It’s important to understand that diamond cutting technology wasn’t as advanced as today, and diamonds were hand-cut, resulting in larger flashes of diamond scintillation (sparkle), compared to the small, glittery scintillation found in modern machine-cut Round Brilliant Cut diamonds.
Similarly, jewelers didn’t have today’s advanced equipment to grade diamonds and gemstones for internal flaws. With genuine antique rings it may not even be possible to take the stone out from the setting to give it a GIA certificate, without risking the ring’s integrity.
Depending on the period, antique engagement rings will be handmade or a combination of die struck and handmade. The materials used were gold, silver and platinum.
As with any ring, proper maintenance and care is the key, but antique engagement rings Redlands require extra love and care to last for generations. Some rings may be more fragile than modern rings, so caution with everyday routine is important.
Georgian period lasted from 1740 to 1830. Jewelry from the Georgian period is very rare. Most diamonds were set in silver backed with gold to prevent the silver from tarnishing. Rings were handmade and made of 18K gold or silver. Motifs in engagement rings include bows and scrollwork.
Victorian period (1835-1900) in jewelry making was inextricably connected to the long and eventful reign of Queen Victoria. Ring styles mirrored the Queen’s love for her husband and her mourning after his passing. With the discovery of diamond mines in South Africa in 1867, diamonds were increasingly more used. It was in the late Victorian period that the diamond solitaire rose to popularity and platinum became the luxury choice. Apart from nature motifs, prominent features included Egyptian, Etruscan, Celtic, Roman and Greek motifs, as well as ribbons, bows, scrolls, and knots.
Edwardian period lasted from 1900 to 1915. Rings from this period are light and airy, with platinum being the preferred metal due to its unparalleled strength. Filigree, openwork and enameling are key identifiers of this time period.
Art Nouveau (1895-1915) overlapped with Victorian and Edwardian periods, but its distinct use of flowers, birds, and the female form, oftentimes nude, set it apart. Art Nouveau rings characterized fluid and graceful designs. Enameling and the plique-a-jour technique were prevalent.
If you are hesitant about the maintenance and care required for antique engagement rings, we recommend purchasing a Van Craeynest engagement ring, which is made from original die-struck molds. Van Craeynest engagement rings are made in our factory in Redlands, using old world jewelry making craftsmanship. This allows you to have the look and feel of an old piece, without any baggage of an old piece.
We would love to welcome you to our boutique showroom on 27 E State St, Redlands, where we can not only present you the vast and varied selection of antique engagement rings we carry, but also talk to you about what you are after. Our expertise is at your disposal - let us help you find what you are looking for!Contact Us Today