Choosing a stone for a custom engagement ring, or for one of your own design does take some forethought.
Yes, of course you want to like the color and shape of the stone. However, there are some things to keep in mind when you are making a selection. Here are Johanna Ingram’s (designer/owner for Harold Jewelry) recommendations for choosing the best gemstones and cabochons for your desired piece:
- Always consider the 4 C’s - cut, clarity, color and carat weight when choosing gemstones.
- Hardness levels of a stone is important, too. Says Ingram, “I once had a customer who wanted to have morganite in a prong setting for her engagement ring. Although, it is a beautiful pale pink color, I discouraged choosing this stone, because it’d need to be replaced in 5 years. This stone’s hardness level is 7 and set in a ring that’s worn daily, it will not endure the regular wear because it’s too soft. Morganite is better for pendants or earrings that don’t face as much risk for getting bumped or knocked against other objects.”
- When choosing stones of a certain clarity, there are ways to do so and stay within budget. D represents colorless, or flawless stones and are typically the most expensive. G& H on the color scale are more affordable and the flaws can only be seen under a magnifier. There are some exceptions, like citrine, for example. Some people like the look that the inclusions make – delicate black lines accenting the brilliant yellow of the stone. A note of caution – fractures and or, feathering in a gemstone do have a greater chance of breaking in the stone-setting process.
- Gemstones with a thicker girdle, or base width are easier to set.
- As for cabochons, choose ones that dome from the base allow for better bezel settings vs. those with a too-high edge.
We hope these tips help you choose the perfect stone for your piece! If you’re considering having a custom design made by Harold Jewelry and have questions about you’re stone of choice, feel free to send your questions here.