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ORIGINS OF THE CLUSTER RING
Cluster rings have been about for as long as craftsmen have been setting precious stones in metal or other materials. Their use as the official engagement ring is a more recent phenomenon.
Many attribute the rise in popularity of cluster rings to the fact that William gave Kate his mother’s cluster ring for their engagement. They believe that the royal family was the ones who kick-started the engagement cluster trend. This is not entirely true.
Engagement rings have been in common use for centuries. The earliest origins go back to pre-roman times when men would put a ring on a woman’s finger to indicate “ownership”.
As the jewelry skills developed enough to create gemstones rings, the more gems that were shown, the more prestigious the ring. A single stone ring would have been uncommon.
It was really only when the Tiffany Setting style of diamond rings was launched with huge success that we saw solitaire rings become the accepted norm as a signal of intent to marry, and the cluster style became a more niche choice among discerning buyers.
WHAT IS A CLUSTER RING?
A cluster ring is a ring that features a primary diamond in the center and is surrounded by a circular halo of smaller diamonds. The cluster surrounding the center diamond gives an allusion that all the diamonds are really one very large diamond.
Technically, any ring with a halo of diamonds can be classed as a cluster but, traditionally, the outer edges need to follow the exact shape of the smaller diamonds in the halo in order to truly be a cluster ring.
Although in recent times the cluster ring is meant to describe only engagement rings, it can technically refer to cocktail rings as well.
CLUSTER DIAMOND RINGS AND OTHER GEMS
In ages past, each culture would use stones relevant to their beliefs to decorate the rings, with emphasis placed on precious and bright stones such as rubies or emeralds, and diamonds took more of a back seat, being seen as a sparkling addition rather than being the star of the piece.
Indeed, it was only in the late 1930s when De Beers launched its famous advertising campaign, that the engagement ring as we know it today took shape.
It’s fair to say that most colored stones look amazing with diamonds as part of a cluster arrangement, which may be why Princess Diana’s ring on Kate’s finger was an instant hit. Put a beautiful ring on a beautiful woman and there’s no end to the impact it can have.
For most of the cluster ring renaissance, though, the clusters themselves have predominantly been entirely diamond based. This is not just because of the obvious beauty a diamond cluster has, but also for more pragmatic reasons.
TIPS FOR ENGAGEMENT RING CLUSTER RINGS
As mentioned earlier, diamond engagement ring cluster rings are very popular. There are many tips and tricks that we can give you based on are 40+ years of selling engagement rings.
- Firstly, follow all the regular tips that we have for buying an engagement ring.
- Check carefully to see how the carat weight is calculated before purchasing. Many times, jewelry sellers will include the cluster diamond weight into the total carat weight. We have a policy of transparency, but many companies will try and trick you that way.
- Examine the cluster very carefully before leaving the store. Many times, the smaller stones aren’t properly connected to the mounting. Shake the ring near your ear and listen out for a shaking sound. If you hear a rattling, one (or more) of the stones isn’t tightly fixed inside the setting.
- Decide if you want the edges of the halo to have milgrain on them. If you decide that you want the milgrain later on, it will probably cost you extra.
SHOP DIAMOND CLUSTER RINGS
In solitaire rings, it will take a very special stone to bring gasps of admiration for anybody who sees it. With cluster rings, the headliner needn’t necessarily be as big or as expensive. The added stones play the role of supporting artists and do wonders for the general beauty of the ring.
This doesn’t mean that vintage diamond cluster rings are inferior in any way, of course. Most clusters will have a total carat weight well in excess of most solitaire rings. The cost is tempered, however, in comparison to what is charged for a single diamond.
Victorian Cluster Ring
Victorian Diamond Cluster Ring
Original Price$9,300.00Current Price$8,400.00
Cluster Engagement Rings
If you’re in search of a unique engagement ring that feels one-of-a-kind but isn’t too pricey, then you really can’t go wrong with a cluster engagement ring. Made with an assortment of stones in different cuts and sizes, these rings are interesting to look at and often feel unexpected.
“Cluster rings are usually asymmetrical and incorporate different shapes and colors,” jeweler Sarah Ortega of Sarah O. Jewelry tells Brides. “There are multiple main stones (no main center stone) creating a multi-focal point.”
MEET THE EXPERT
Sarah Ortega is a New Mexico-based jeweler who created the brand Sarah O. Jewelry.
There are two types of cluster rings. One kind, which is particularly trendy at the moment, features a few different stones in different cuts and colors (think Emily Ratajkowski’s engagement ring). The other kind features a cluster of small stones that are put together to resemble one larger stone.
It’s not hard to see why cluster engagement rings are having a moment in the spotlight. “A lot of people are drawn to cluster rings because they want something non-traditional, and it allows them to create something totally unique,” Ortega says. “Also, it’s a nice way to incorporate sentimental stones, like birthstones or heirloom stones.” Cluster rings are perfect for the indecisive bride: If you can’t pick between a round diamond or a pear-cut gemstone, you can have both.
Here’s a look at some of the most gorgeous cluster engagement rings available that will leave you seriously reconsidering the solitaire ring you had your eyes on.01of 28
Victor Barbone Pixie Ring
Make your cluster ring even more unique with this vintage option. It’s an authentic ring from the Edwardian Era circa 1910, featuring an old European-cut diamond surrounded by clusters of small diamonds.02of 28
Laura Preshong Portia Brilliant Cut Cluster Ring
This asymmetrical cluster ring features mixed sizes of round Canadian diamond side stones that surround a brilliant-cut center stone. The shape is so beautiful and the gold band completes the look.03of 28
Ken & Dana Design Lippy Ring
This Art Deco-inspired ring is a true stunner. The horizontally-set oval center stone gives it a bit of a vintage look, while the beaded gold setting and smaller diamonds surrounding it add lots of detail.04of 28
Artemer Flora Cluster Engagement Ring
Instead of featuring a larger center stone surrounded by smaller stones, this ring features a cluster of smaller stones that form a floral shape. All in all, this piece is unique and feminine.05of 28
Capucinne Veronica Baguette Diamond Cluster Ring
The asymmetrical setting of this baguette diamond makes this ring really stand out. It’s surrounded by a variety of smaller stones on a thin gold band.28 Extraordinary Baguette Wedding Bands for Every Style06of 28
Bario Neal Eaves Cluster Diamond Ring
This cluster ring features two larger stones in two different shapes: the oval and pear diamonds steal all the attention, but the smaller diamonds clustered around them really add a nice shape. The thin gold band keeps this ring on the simpler side.07of 28
Mejuri Diamonds Cluster Ring
The perfect cluster of small diamonds makes a unique and beautiful shape. This almost looks like two rings stacked together, but it’s really just one on a thin gold band. This gives the look of a larger diamond without the price point.08of 28
Harry Winston Pear-Shaped Cluster Engagement Ring
This elegant and sophisticated design features a center pear-cut diamond stone surrounded by smaller diamonds. It creates a unique shape that is signature Harry Winston and manages to be classic but different at the same time.09of 28
Victor Barbone Elvira Ring
This authentic antique ring is from the Edwardian era and features a Toi et Moi style that you won’t see on many other rings. On your finger, it creates a pleasing, almost bubble-like look.26 Beautiful Toi et Moi Rings to Symbolize Your Love10of 28
Anna Sheffield Celestine Ring
This stand-out ring features a center champagne diamond surrounded by tiny pearls. The shape and basket underneath give this ring a vintage feel.11of 28
Effy Bouquet Diamond Cluster Ring
If you want the look of a larger diamond without the high price point, this cluster bouquet ring is perfect. The center stone is actually several small diamonds clustered together to look like one round stone, and the double band creates a chunkier look.12of 28
Ken & Dana Design Starulla Ring
This cluster of small diamonds around a center round stone creates a star shape. The band features more small stones and an intricate milgrain design, too.13of 28
Bario Neal Avens Asymmetrical Raw Diamond Ring
If you’re open to something besides a diamond but also want to keep things a little bit classic, opt for this ring. The asymmetrical raw diamond looks more modern, and the cluster of yellow sapphires on the side adds a little bit of color.14of 28
Natalie Marie Jewelry Diamond Cluster Ring
The smaller stones on the sides of this round diamond center stone give off a floral look that is really feminine. A thin band just adds to how delicate and dainty this one feels.15of 28
Mejuri Linear Cluster Ring
A beautiful diamond alternative cluster ring, this one features prasiolite, diamond, and green sapphire. It’s colorful without being overwhelming and feels fresh and modern.16of 28
Ecksand Blossom Engagement Ring
A cluster of small diamonds surrounds a center round diamond for a floral look. These ethical diamonds are untreated and not enhanced, and the band is made of 100 percent sustainable recycled gold.17of 28
Brilliant Earth Stella Diamond Engagement Ring
A collection of small marquise-shaped diamonds surround a center round stone for a chic and modern look. This is so pretty from the top and the side.18of 28
Ken & Dana Design Gretchen Ring
Uniquely designed gold prongs, tiny leaf details, and a split shank band make this ring really stand out. The cluster of small diamonds creates a round diamond look, and the overall feel is very floral and feminine.19of 28
Alexis Russell One of a Kind Moonstone and Diamond Cluster Ring
Can’t decide on just one stone? This unique cluster ring offers a few: moonstone, Montana sapphire, and orange diamond. It’s a perfect alternative ring option.20of 28
Melissa Tyson Designs Constellation Ring
A cluster of white and gray diamonds is a nice way to do something unique and modern without straying too far from the classic white diamond. These small stones are arranged in a constellation-like shape.21of 28
Mociun Vega Ring
This ring features an old European cut center ring, with small diamonds on the side that give off an interesting starburst design. It offers tons of sparkle.22of 28
Bario Neal Lash Cluster Triad Andalusite Marquise Ring
This one has a very different shape: instead of smaller stones around a large center stone, it’s a few stones lined up. The unique prongs and the collection of different shades make this one very modern.23of 28
Kobelli Multi Diamond Baguette Cluster Ring
Small round and baguette diamonds make up this interesting cluster ring. From afar, it might appear to be one large diamond, but a closer look shows that it’s just a whole bunch of smaller ones making a beautiful shape.24of 28
Lovebright Diamond Cluster Engagement Ring
This is another cluster ring that appears to be one stone when it’s actually a collection of smaller ones. It looks like a round diamond and features a delicate, thin band.25of 28
Mociun Super Luna Ring
This dazzling ring is a real showstopper, with an old European center cut stone and several smaller European-cut stones around it. The delicate gold band just adds to the whole look.26of 28
Blue Nile Marquise and Round Diamond Cluster Ring
A collection of sparkling marquise and round diamonds give this ring a unique look. Instead of your typical center stone, it looks wider and features a lot more stones.27of 28
Kobelli Oval Cluster Split Shank Ring
A large amount of small round diamonds create the shape of a large oval diamond, all surrounding one center oval-cut stone. The split shank band is also covered in diamonds.28of 28
Ken & Dana Designs Grace Ring
This ring is both classic and unique at once, with a cushion-cut diamond center stone surrounded by smaller diamonds and citrine. The citrine adds a nice pop of color that is still subtle.