For those looking for something a bit more unique than a standard round but diamond, a floral ring might be a perfect option. In this guide, we discuss everything you need to know about buying a flower engagement ring.
What are Flower Engagement Rings?
Traditional diamond engagement rings are dominated by a single center stone. Often they are flanked by two smaller stones for a 3-gemstone design. But a floral engagement ring is much less dominated by a single large stone.
A floral engagement ring is a type of cluster design with a center stone representing the pistil of a flower bloom. The center stone is smaller than traditional center stones and surrounded by a cluster of smaller diamonds or other gemstones, in a creative, floral arrangement representing petals.
In addition, the metalwork of the setting (the ring itself) is often fashioned in a floral motif. Leaves, tendrils, shoots, stems, and entwined tiny branches may all play a part — often decorated by accent diamonds or other accent gemstones.
These qualities give these floral designs a vintage yet modern appearance which distinguishes them from traditional designs.
In fact, you’ll find that each floral engagement ring can be as individual as the vision of the artist who created it, and of the customer who chose the gemstones. Floral engagement rings have a warmer feel than other classes of engagement rings such as solitaire, pavé, or simple geometric cluster designs.
Colors of diamonds and other gemstones tend to vary in floral engagement rings. You’ll see pink diamonds, Fancy Yellow diamonds, blue diamonds, and champagne diamonds. You’ll even see — and maybe even help to create, if you choose — designs employing rubies, emeralds, sapphires, and other alternatives.
Why Do Couples Choose Floral Engagement Rings?
This section details a few reasons why a flower engagement ring might be the right choice for you.
Unique and Softer Appearance
Couples who are less interested in traditional designs than they are in making a personal, subtle and quite feminine statement are often interested in floral engagement ring designs.
Symbol of Springtime and Love
Some say that floral ring designs reflect the twining, blooming world of springtime flowering plants. Or that flower designs speak more naturally of love than do solitaires. They say these rings are more true to the emotions of love than a single, imposing rock of a diamond which may overwhelm some small hands or fingers and seem cold, or may seem like a bare statement of wealth.
In addition to communicating to each other and to the world more accurately their feelings about their love, many couples find the smaller monetary cost attractive.
Because floral engagement rings are designed for an overall effect in representations of flowers, a massive center stone would only disrupt and ruin the design.
For that reason, large center stones are unneeded.
Since larger single diamonds are much more expensive than a collection of smaller diamonds of the same carat weight, floral engagement ring designs are usually much less expensive than similar-sized designs that consist only of one to three diamonds.
The subtle composition of a floral engagement ring can create a large, pleasing surface area. That means magnificent diamond sparkle that catches the eye more readily than some traditional designs. Floral engagement rings can boast many diamonds. That can mean hundreds more points of light than a ring of just a single stone.
Because floral engagement rings are available in so many customizable designs, it’s easier to choose a ring which fits your beloved’s personality.
Maybe that choice is a favorite flower of hers. Or maybe it’s her birth flower. Or perhaps tied to a personally favorite song, or favorite natural scene in which such flowers were blooming on a special occasion for you both.
Common Concerns With Floral Rings – Are They Really Issues?
This section dives into a few common concerns that you may have when considering a flower style engagement ring.
No Problem With Acceptance
Floral engagement rings are widely accepted, even if they’re not the traditional norm. So there’s no disadvantage in that way.
No Problem With Extra Expense
Because of the needs of a floral design, they happen to be less expensive. So there’s no disadvantage there.
The cost savings is a side benefit, and that’s also recognized. It’s due to the demands of the design. So there isn’t a disadvantage of appearing to deliberately spend less.
Not that there’s anything wrong with sensible frugality. But with a floral design, it’s simply a matter of physics and economics. The design and aesthetic requires smaller diamonds. Smaller diamonds are less expensive.
Slightly More Risk of Loss
One potential disadvantage may be the slightly increased risk of a diamond being lost due to a loose mount.
The more diamonds in a design, the more (yet always small) chance of one becoming loose and falling off. With yearly or twice-yearly inspection by a professional jeweler, this risk can be lowered to almost zero.
Slightly More Difficult to Clean
There is one clear disadvantage, but it’s not very significant because it’s easily overcome. These designs are a little more difficult to clean.
But just as with any diamond engagement ring, it’s still easy. You soak it in purified or distilled water with a little mild dish soap, then if needed lightly brush it with a clean new soft-bristled toothbrush, and finally rinse with water.
What to Look for in a Floral Engagement Ring
In this section, we detail a few factors that you should look for when choosing a flower engagement ring.
What Speaks to You
Especially with a floral engagement ring, personal preference should be given free rein. Experts can agree on what makes a solitaire diamond beautiful, rare, and valuable. But judging the beauty of a floral design is much more subjective.
Ensure that the diamonds are graded by GIA or GSI, so that you know exactly what you are getting.
Cut and Chosen Color
The cut and chosen color (for example, pink, Fancy Yellow, Fancy Brown, or blue, etc.) of the diamonds are entirely up to your sense of beauty and aesthetics.
Don’t go into the search believing rigidly that you must search for a specific cut or chosen color in order for the design to be “good.”
When I say chosen color here, I refer to various GIA-specified colors of diamonds that you can choose aesthetically. These are called, officially Fancy Color diamonds, Fancy Brown diamonds, and Fancy Yellow diamonds. These, which I unofficially call chosen colors, are of course different from the gradations of color quality in a colorless diamond.
For example, you can choose a pink diamond or a blue diamond among Fancy Color diamonds.
These choices are different than color quality, one of the 4 C’s, which is objective and directly affects beauty and value.
Clarity and Color
Even within the freedom of subjective aesthetics in floral engagement rings, it’s easy to refer to a rule of thumb:
Any diamonds which are emphasized by the design should be of slightly better clarity and color.
And so the dominant diamonds in the design shouldn’t be too much better. And they shouldn’t be worse, of course.
In other words, the design should work well organically. Whatever part of the design naturally focuses the eye (usually this would be a center stone) should stand out a little — but not too much. And all the other gemstones should work together as well.
This isn’t hard to find, because jewelry designers are aesthetically literate and accomplished artists in their craft. And you too are involved. Since at James Allen and Blue Nile you can in most instances choose your diamonds, you should also keep in mind this basic guideline.
Most important when you shop for a flower engagement ring is to stick with the reputable merchants.
When shopping for a less traditional design such as a floral ring, couples can easily believe that traditional rules don’t apply, such as the well-known rule that diamonds are never really on sale.
That’s not a rule or a tradition so much as it is a reality. Diamonds are so retail market-oriented, and so valuable, that they never really are sold by retailers for less than the market value. So beware of merchants offering floral engagement rings at massive “discounts.”
You can daily see “70%” discounts at some retailers. It’s easy to forget that these (like most retail discounts) are fundamentally dishonest “discounts.” You’ll find that the diamonds in those rings are inferior diamonds without GIA certification. You’ll find that any massively “discounted” floral ring has been marked up to a fantasy “list” price, then “discounted” by a ridiculous amount.
(Some ring settings at reputable jewelers do receive modest discounts from time to time throughout the year, most notably on Black Friday and the week following. But these are modest discounts and the discounts apply only to the rings, not to the diamonds. Diamonds are always at the market price, with tiny fluctuations only.)
Where to Buy Floral Diamond Engagement Rings
As you know from reading our educational material, we can vouch for and recommend James Allen, Blue Nile, and Brian Gavin as competitive, highly reputable online jewelry merchants with impeccable integrity.
Especially at James Allen and Blue Nile, you’ll find an extensive collection of settings, traditional and Fancy Color diamonds, and other gemstones. You can design a completely unique, personal floral engagement ring that perfectly expresses your love.