From Head to Shank: Unveiling the Structure of Diamond Rings

Written by YGH

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Posted on May 14 2024

The history of diamond rings can be traced back to ancient times, with early examples found in Rome and Greece. From way back then to now, these beautiful pieces of jewelry have captured the hearts and imaginations of people across the world. Getting to know more about the diamond rings, you can start by learning their structure: head, center stone, side stones, gallery and so on. In this blog post, we're going to dive into the different parts that make up a diamond ring, from the top of the ring to the bottom, and explore how each piece contributes to creating a stunning and long-lasting symbol of love.


Head: Setting and Center Stone

The head of a diamond ring is the most visible and important part, often including both the setting and the center stone.
Setting, also referred to as the mounting, which is how the stone is mounted. Its primary purpose is to provide security for the diamond. There are different types of settings, each with its own unique style.
● Prong setting. The most popular is the prong setting, which features metal tines that hug the diamond tightly. It's like the diamond is getting a big, protective hug!
● Bezel setting. Bezel settings is like a metal frame that goes all the way around the diamond, giving it a sleek and modern vibe.
● Tension setting. For a real wow factor, some rings use a tension setting, where the diamond looks like it's just floating in mid-air. It's held in place by the pressure from the band, kind of like a magic trick!
If the setting is the safety guard, then the real star of the show is the center stone. This is where a dazzling diamond takes center stage, and it's often the focal point of the entire ring. When choosing your perfect diamond, you'll want to consider the 4 Cs: cut, color, clarity, and carat weight.
● Cut. The cut is about how well the diamond is shaped and polished. A good cut can make the diamond really sparkle and dance in the light.
● Color. Diamonds come in all sorts of shades, from totally colorless to some with a hint of yellow or brown. The clearer the color, the more valuable the diamond usually is.
● Clarity. It's how many tiny imperfections, or "inclusions," are inside the diamond. The fewer of these flaws, the better.
● Carat weight. It is basically how much the diamond weighs. The more carats, the bigger the stone!

Side Stones

Side stones are like the backup dancers to the center stone's lead performer. They're there to make the whole ring look even more fabulous and eye-catching. These smaller diamonds or gemstones usually sit on either side of the main attraction, creating a beautiful and balanced design. There are a bunch of different ways to arrange side stones, and each one has its own unique flair.
● Pavé Setting. One popular option is the pavé setting, where tiny diamonds are packed closely together with barely any metal showing.
● Channel Setting. For this setting way, the diamonds are nestled safely inside a grooved channel that runs along the band.
● Three-stone Setting. For a ring that tells a story, some couples opt for a three-stone setting. In this style, two larger side stones flank the center diamond, representing the couple's past, present, and future together.

three stone engagement ring

Gallery

The gallery is like the secret underground lair of the ringhead. It's the part that's hidden beneath the center stone, so most people don't even know it exists, but it plays a crucial role in the ring's structure and design. But the gallery is so much more than just a practical necessity. It's a chance for the ring designer to let their creativity boost and add individual style. Some galleries even have a special type of detailing called milgrain, which looks like tiny beads or dots along the edges.
You can work with your jeweler to create a one-of-a-kind design that reflects your personality. Maybe you want to engrave a special message or date, or add a bold geometric pattern that catches the eye.

Claws

Claws, or prongs as some people call them, are like the tiny metal superheroes that keep your center stone safe and sound. They're the little pointy bits that stick out from the head of the ring and grip the diamond tightly, kind of like a claw machine at an arcade.
But claws aren't just there to hold the diamond in place – they also play a big role in making it look its best. By holding the stone up high, they allow tons of light to hit the diamond from all angles, making it sparkle and shine like crazy.
Now, claws come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, each with its own personality. You've got your classic round or button claws that are like the trusty sidekicks – they're dependable, timeless, and always get the job done. Then there are the edgier V-shaped or pointed claws that add a bit of attitude to the ring. If you're rocking a bigger diamond, you might consider double claws. They're like the superhero team-up, providing extra security and peace of mind.

Shoulders

The shoulders of a diamond ring are like the smooth operators that keep everything flowing nicely. They're the part of the ring that connects the head (where the center stone lives) to the shank (the part that wraps around your finger). The shoulders are responsible for making sure the transition from one part of the ring to the other is smooth and seamless, without any awkward bumps or ridges. They can be straight, tapered, or curved, depending on the overall design of the ring. Here are some common shoulders you can learn.
● Plain shoulders. For people who prefer clean lines and simplicity, plain shoulders might be their cup of tea. They're like the little black dress of ring design – classic, elegant, and always in style.
● Tapered shoulders. These are suitable for someone who wants something with a bit more pizzazz. They start out wider at the head and gradually narrow as they approach the shank, creating a sense of movement and flow.
● Twisted shoulders. For a real showstopper, twisted shoulders are the way to go. Imagine two delicate strands of metal intertwined together, creating a mesmerizing spiral effect. It's like the ring is doing a little dance on your finger.

Round Moss Agate Engagement Ring Leaf Design Diamond Rose Gold

Bridge

It's the hidden foundation that provides stability and strength to the head of the ring, making sure your diamond doesn't wiggle or wobble.
Think of the bridge like the steel beams in a building – you can't see them, but they're doing all the heavy lifting to keep everything sturdy and secure. This is especially important if you've got a bigger or heavier diamond that needs some extra support.
Bridges can be solid, split, or decorated, each offering a different level of support and visual interest. A solid bridge is a continuous piece of metal, providing maximum stability, while a split bridge divides the support into two or more sections, creating an open and airy feel. Decorated bridges feature intricate engravings or filigree work that turn the hidden foundation into a secret work of art. It's like having a mini sculpture exhibition underneath your diamond.

Shank

Shank is the part of the ring that wraps around your finger, holding everything together and keeping your diamond safe and sound. Shanks come in various profiles, each offering a different feel and aesthetic.
● Flat shank.The flat shank is like the modern minimalist of the ring world – it's got a squared-off interior that creates a sleek and contemporary look. It's perfect for those who like their jewelry to have a bit of an edge.
● Rounded shank. If you're more of a classic type, a rounded shank might be more your speed. This shank is like a cozy hug for your finger – it's got a smooth, rounded interior that feels super comfortable and timeless.
● Knife-edge shanks. Knife-edge shanks are suitbale for those who want to make a statement. These shanks have a pointed interior that's sharp and stylish, like a fashion-forward accessory.
Also, shanks are the perfect canvas for personalization. You can engrave meaningful messages, dates, or symbols onto the shank to make your ring truly one-of-a-kind.

Classic Solitaire Oval Moissanite Engagement Ring

Find Your Perfect Diamond Ring of Love!

A diamond ring is more than just a piece of bling – it's a powerful symbol of your love story. Whether you're drawn to a classic solitaire or a more intricate design, understanding the anatomy of a ring can help you find the perfect fit for your style and budget. So take some time to explore the different components, from the head to the shank, and trust your heart to guide you to the ring that truly represents your unique bond. Because in the end, a diamond ring is a beautiful reminder of the love and commitment you share, and a treasured keepsake that will stand the test of time.