Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

From cushion cuts to countless carats, we’ve got you covered...

With the recent Royal Wedding still fresh in your to-be fiancee’s mind, you’re probably worrying that your proposal, engagement and wedding will never live up to those fairytale expectations. And that’s all Prince Harry’s fault.

But, rather than feeling sorry for yourself — most of us don’t have a castle, slick military uniform or concept Jaguar to help pep up our big day — you can educate yourself on the finer points of ring buying. When you crack that engagement ring box open, it kicks off the entire proposal process, so getting the ring is of paramount importance.

"When you crack that engagement ring box open, it kicks off the entire proposal process..."

Last year, Gentleman’s Journal teamed up with Boodles to offer advice on how to gauge and guess what sort of ring your soon-to-be betrothed will love. Now comes the next step — putting those likes and leanings into words.

The world of engagement rings is peppered with words and phrases used nowhere else, term upon term that would leave the normal man nonplussed in the face of options. So, before you head in store for one of the most important purchases of your life, take a glance at our handy glossary, compiled by one of Boodle’s knowledgeable engagement ring experts.

Accent Diamonds

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: Smaller diamonds that surround, or enhance the main diamond.

If you’re going for a ring with multiple diamonds or gemstones, then the accent diamonds are key to get right. Your main stone is likely the source of much deliberation, and don’t let this scrutiny slip when it comes to the secondary stones.

“We love including accent diamonds as it shows great attention to detail,” says Boodles, “and showcases our unique design talent. Our ‘Harmony’ design rings include a good example of accent diamonds. Hidden details such as these are important, and offer something unique and special which only the wearer knows is there.”

Halo

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: An unbroken ring of smaller diamonds that surround the main diamond.

Boodles’ most popular engagement ring design is the ‘Vintage’, which epitomises this style. Essentially an unbroken chain of accent diamonds, encompassing the main stone, it is a look of classic decadence and delicately frames the centrepiece diamond.

“It’s a halo of shimmering diamonds, that can also make a smaller stone appear bigger,” says Boodles. “This is a good choice of engagement ring style for a woman who loves vintage styles from the 1920s or1930s era, or anything reminiscent of the Art Deco period.”

Cuts

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: The way in which the main diamond is cut — its shape.

The list is long: Asscher, Cushion, Emerald, European, Heart. And that’s just a handful. The cut of diamond to choose is subjective. It is as personal as the woman receiving the engagement ring and a way to cater to unique tastes. So take a look at her jewellery, and see what shapes she likes to wear. Or go for something rare…

“Boodles is the only British jeweller to offer ‘Ashoka’ cut diamonds — for which it takes an exceptional stone and many months of skilled work to create this 62-facet cut. Combining both elegance and radiance, these stones are known for their incomparable sparkle.”

Carat

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: Measurement of the diamond, taking into account the weight rather than size.

Diamonds are measured in carats, which uses the weight of the stones rather than their size or clarity as markers. Carats are split into points where 100 points are equal to one carat, so a 50 point diamond would be a half carat.

“As the carat weight measures the weight and therefore the size of a diamond,” explains Boodles, “price range comes into play in this aspect of choosing a stone. However, we would always advise quality over a quantity – a smaller stone with excellent colour and polish is a far better investment than a larger diamond of poor quality.”

Bezel

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: Metal that surrounds and frames the diamond entirely.

As with your watch, the bezel of an engagement ring is the band of metal around the diamond that encompasses it and holds it in place. This can be forged from any number of precious metals, depending on the style of the ring.

“You can often add an accent of diamonds to the bezel,” offers Boodles, “or, if you want to keep the bezel plain, on the underside of an engagement ring.”

Solitaire

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: A ring with one single stone.

An exotic word for a simple concept: A solitaire is a ring with just one diamond. Reserved, chic and simply sophisticated, this could come off as too basic, but introduce a uniquely-designed band and you could be on to a winner.

“We’ve just got an exciting new solitaire design ring for Boodles: The ‘Petal’ ring. Simple but effective, other popular solitaire-style rings are the ‘Boodles Brilliance’ and ‘Harmony’ ranges.”

Unique Shank

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

Simply put: A ring with a uniquely-designed band.

The shank is essentially the ring itself, the band of metal that wraps around the finger on which the diamond sits. A unique shank is what is says on the tin: A band with some added interest or flair, using either added gemstones or design.

“As an example, our new ‘Petal’ design engagement ring has a unique shank,” says Boodles. “Which we introduced to offer more variety within Boodles range.”

Buying an engagement ring? Here’s our guide to jewellery jargon, with Boodles

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