Modern proposals: Alternative engagement rings for couples with character

Research suggests that young couples are ditching the traditional Tiffany-style diamond solitaire and instead choosing coloured stones and more alternative engagement rings which better reflect their individualism and character. 


Whilst there is still a lot of demand for diamond solitaires there has been huge growth in the call for non-traditional designs and even stones like sapphires, emeralds and rubies are no longer considered unusual. Millennials are leading the charge toward completely unexpected stones in glorious technicolour, but the ‘anti-bridezilla’ movement is also growing amongst those marrying later in life and second-timers too.  

Where couples do choose diamonds they are often looking for unusual, unique designs. Rubover settings, naturalistic and organic shapes, multi-layered and nesting rings, open cuffs and even ‘charm’ rings where one diamond or several diamonds dangle from the band rather than being set ‘front and centre’ in the traditional clawed manner have all been seen trending on the pages of fashion bibles like Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and Stylist magazine. 

18ct rose gold diamond and ruby ring


So getting married doesn’t mean you have to compromise your personal style or that you have to conform to the norm. If you’re going to wear a ring for life, then it should mean something to you and your partner and you should adore it. It should express something of you and your relationship. 

Thankfully, engagement ring designs are evolving and innovating to meet the new diversity of taste and there is a plethora of alternative styles to inspire you at Biagio. Modern, vintage, stacks, shapes, textured metal and minimalist pieces abound, and if you can’t find something that perfectly suits then we can help you design your own, one-off ring. 

Let us fire up your imagination with our top alternative engagement rings for truly modern marriages…

United Colours:

If diamonds leave you a bit, well, meh, but you still hanker after a precious gem then emeralds, rubies and sapphires are the perfect alternative. You’ll be in good company with your choice too, as these prized stones are often chosen to grace royal fingers. Edward VIII proposed to Wallis Simpson with a 19ct emerald ring and his love was famously strong enough to give up crown and kingdom. In more recent times, Prince Charles proposed to Diana, Princess of Wales with a beautiful blue sapphire ring, which is now worn by the Duchess of Cambridge, and if it’s good enough for Kate then perhaps these alternative engagement rings will win you over too. 

Emerald and diamond ring

Unexpected Gems & Mineral Matters:

Marriageable-age millennials are breaking entirely with tradition and choosing semi-precious stones and even non-precious materials to feature in their rings, with the result that these rings are becoming increasingly valued. Semi-precious stones are seen as offering a greater variety of colours and cuts which are able to more readily reflect individual characters, as well as being great value for money. Stones like blue topaz forms naturally large crystals so lends itself well to offering the luxurious look-and-feel of a precious stone at a very reasonable price.  

9ct blue topaz and diamond ring

Not your standard solitaire:

Many maybe be choosing alternative stones right now, but it’s worth noting that trends come and go and diamonds will always hold a certain allure. If there’s no question that diamonds are still your best friend, then are there still fresh, modern ways to wear them. Think unusual settings and textured metals in unique designs. If you’re really brave you could take the plunge into black diamonds, or if that’s a step too far how about a coloured diamond rather than white. 

18ct rose gold and princess cut diamond engagement ring

Piqued your imagination? Come and join us at our Autumn Wedding Rings Event from Saturday 19th and Saturday 26th October. Book a consultation with our jewellery specialists today and you'll be treated with up to 50% off your wedding rings.