The four-prong setting is a classic, and popular with brides who like the sleekness of a solitaire. The diamond is set into a cup and secured by four or six prongs. Five, eight or ten prongs are also available, but less common. The cup tends to have a slit opening on the side to allow light through. This setting will give you maximum shine for a good stone. An alternative is the six-prong setting (introduced and popularised by Tiffany & Co), which emphasises a diamond’s roundness, and is purported to be more secure. Sometimes, a four-prong set can make a round diamond look like a square, which some brides may not like.
try: Solitaire diamond ring in 18K yellow gold with a 0.5 ct round brilliant solitaire, price unavailable, from Poh Heng Jewellery.
The bezel is one of the older, more traditional settings. Designed to hold the diamond securely, the centre stone is set within a cup and is rimmed. If you’re looking for more shine, choose an already brilliantly-cut diamond with more sparkle, as this setting cuts down the shine. Alternatively, consider an open bezel, where the sides of the cup are slit open, so light filters through, upping the gleam.
try: Trilogy bezel ring, from On Cheong Jewellery
3. Bar Set
Also known as the trilogy, the stones in this setting are usually set next to each other, separated by a thin bar of gold. The diamonds can be round, square or oblong. The diamonds sit in a “cup” and are secured with four prongs, which reduces its shine factor slightly. This setting is good value for money since it tends to make a ring look bigger. The setting works best with decent-quality diamonds, but the shine factor is medium if the quality of the diamond is average.
try: Trilogy diamond ring in 18k white gold with a round brilliant 0.5 ct diamond in the centre flanked by a round brilliant 0.3 ct diamond on each side, $7,515, from Poh Heng Jewellery (Orchard)
Sometimes a solitaire seems lonely, so designers add tiny twinkle tweakers, embedded in the band beside the centre stone. This is the pave setting, which is lovely for adding subtle shine. In recent years, this vintage style is slowly but surely becoming popular again, as it makes the band look more interesting, and more luxe.
try: LVC Precieux ring in 18k white gold with a heart-shaped brilliant diamond with a split pave band, from Love & Co.
Stones are neatly arranged side by side within a “channel” with this setting. More popular as a wedding band design, this setting can also be used for engagement rings. The main stone is complemented and enhanced by side stones set in a channel. Shine factor: subtle.
try: Classic eternity ring in 18k white gold with round brilliant diamonds, from Goldheart Jewelry
Diamonds are set together in a group, which gives this setting its name. The stones can be arranged in any form or shape (for example, a flower). Cluster settings usually give the ring added height. The stones can be arranged tightly or loosely.
try: from Soo Kee Jewellery
This setting calls out to the modern bride. Here, the stone is set to the same level as the sides of the ring. This style looks neat, and makes a strong, almost architectural, statement. Shine factor is medium as the stone isn’t propped up. If the stone also sits in a “cup” beneath, the shine could be lessened even more.
try: Celestial wedding bands in 18K white gold, from $1,186 each, from Goldheart Jewelry
This story was first featured in Her World Brides December 2014 - February 2015 Issue.