The Heirloom London Eternity Ring Guide : Pt.1

6 carat eternity ring round brilliant diamonds heirloom londonAn eternity ring is a glittering prize for any finger.

Whether a long overdue gift, or a special anniversary present, or even your own personal celebration (we’re thinking the right hand ring girls and guys) there is something very exciting about a sparkling line of stones around your finger.

Megan recently wrote a blog on what an eternity ring is.  Inspired, I started writing an overview on choosing an eternity ring, and discovered that there was quite a lot to explain!  So I have split this into a few articles, which will be forthcoming over the next couple of weeks.

In upcoming blogs I’m going to cover different kind of stone settings, what different descriptions mean when buying, and also some of the issues to avoid.  We’ll start in this article, looking at how stone coverage is described, and style and wear considerations when choosing a ring (either for yourself or somebody else!).[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Choosing an eternity ring – Your considerations

Whether you are looking in store, or online, you should find there are a myriad of eternity ring styles out there.  From classic looking to much more modern everyone should be able to find their perfect style.  Like every other buying exercise, the better equipped you are to understand the terminology you might hear, the easier it will be to build a perception of the right style for you.  You will also have a better view on what impacts your budget requirements.

Everything I’m using in this blog is from the vast array of eternity rings Heirloom offers (well, it would be a bit crazy to have to search the web when I already have images!!).  But you’ll find the same or similar designs in a variety of stores.  So the definitions should stand up with any enquiry you make.

Eternity ring diamond weight – what do the fractions mean?

You may read about eternity bands described as ‘full’, ‘half’, ‘three quarter’ or some other fraction.  This describes how much of the ring profile is stone set.  I’ve noted a little more information below;

Gold eternity ring with 3.0 carat of claw set diamonds eternity ring guideThe Full Eternity

This means that the ring has total stone coverage for its’ entire circumference.  Diamonds are the most common choice for these rings, not least because they are the most robust of the gemstones.  However sapphires and rubies are also good choices.  Emeralds should be avoided in a full eternity ring.  They are hard, but also brittle, and can crack and fall out which is rather heartbreaking.

A full eternity ring is a good option if you;
  1. Don’t want to be bothered with having to shift the set part of the ring back into alignment (as often the unset part will move to the top of the ring).
  2. Have larger knuckles and a smaller finger (as rings often spin).
  3. Like the idea of an unbroken circle of precious stones.
It should be noted, that a full eternity ring is a risky gift if you have not checked finger size.

They can be resized, but it is expensive to do well, and often negates the cost of the ring in the first instance.  Why so?  Well the stones have been painstaking set around the circumference of the ring.  Changing the shape of the ring weakens the stone setting and each stone will have to be checked again.

Half Eternity rings and other sizesHeirloom London eternity ring information

When you see an eternity ring described as ‘half’ or ‘three quarter’ or other proportions, as per the full eternity you are looking at the ring from a coverage perspective.  A three quarter eternity ring will have stones set along 75% of its circumference.  The remaining 25% of ring will simply be the metal band, and ideally this is going to sit at the base of the ring.  For a 50% or half eternity ring, there will be a split of 50% stones and 50% metal.

A half to three quarter eternity ring is a good option if you are;heirloom london eternity ring guide half eternity ring
  1. Trying to choose a less expensive ring. Obviously you are going to be spending less if the ring has fewer stones in it!  This is obviously like for like though, if you choose a half eternity with two carats of stones in it, it is going to be more expensive than a two carat full eternity as the stones in the full eternity are going to be smaller.
  2. Keen on including stones deemed to be softer or more brittle than diamonds.  Here is where you can have emeralds (see my notes on the full eternity) as they are only on the top of the ring, and as such less likely to be banged and scraped.
  3. Worried that you may need to resize your ring in the future, or looking to wear your ring for everything.

What eternity ring should I choose?

Style insights to consider when looking for an eternity ring

EternityRingThe first and foremost question is, how is this ring going to be worn?  This is actually a really important consideration especially if you are looking for a made to order full eternity ring where (out of the high street chains) you are less likely to receive a refund in the instance it doesn’t fit.  So keep the following in mind;

The hand the eternity ring is destined for

Is the ring intended to stack up with the engagement and wedding ring, or destined for the right hand?  It could be it is going to be worn as a wedding ring.  Or it will be worn on its’ own, or tacked with other jewellery.  All of these points should influence your choice.

How much room there is on the finger

If there is already an engagement ring and wedding ring on the hand?  How wide are their bands?  In these situations, the eternity ring is the third addition, and as such if the finger is quite short, is going to make the finger look shorter still if it fills up the whole phalanx[1]. This doesn’t mean there isn’t the right eternity ring out there, but overloading the finger isn’t flattering, it can make the whole hand look chubby.

The shape of the centre stone in an existing engagement ring

choosing an eternity ring, matching centre stone shapeIf you are matching the eternity ring to an engagement ring, you may want to consider whether you want the stones in the setting to match the centre stone shape wise.  This isn’t a given, you can create some interesting contrasts shape-wise.  But for some, they may like the idea of having the consistency.

How often the eternity ring is going to be worn

If you know that the intended wearer is going to be rocking this ring every day, (especially if you are buying this ring for yourself!) what is really important is to ensure a secure setting.  Eternity rings can be set with amazingly delicate little diamonds, secured with tiny settings.  Wearing it while doing the gardening, or the kettlebell class, or even pushing the pram is going to place stress on the more delicate settings which in time may result in stone loss.

[1] The phalanx is the singular anatomical description for one of the phalanges, in this case the proximal phalanges which are the first section of finger between the knuckle and the first joint.  Seriously – look it up if you don’t believe me.

Next Blog;

We cover the pros and cons of buying an off-the-shelf eternity ring, a made to order eternity ring or a bespoke eternity ring.

If you like any of the rings here;

We have a vast number of designs and options to choose from.  Including the rings pictured.

  • Diamond wedding rings or eternity rings usually match the style of the engagement ring, provided it is a diamond engagement ring.

    4th February 2019 at 22:14
    • It is very much a UK thing to want matchy matchy, but actually a lot of my clients are now looking for something to compliment rather than be the same. So I say, don’t get stuck on that, work to your personal style as you’ll have a lot more fun!

      14th February 2019 at 09:40

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