Diane Kruger dazzled while strolling into the Met Gala last September. The German actress and model arrived in a lime green dress with a train and cutouts that showed off her abs, bright pink eyeshadow and a gigantic engagement ring with a square diamond the size of the Ritz.
After years of more subtle sparklers and sweet semi-precious stones, Kruger’s eye-catching stone threw down a gauntlet.
Brides – tired of the frugality and caution of the COVID-era – are embracing the big, the bold and the brilliant. And what better way to announce that than with an eye-catching ring?
“It’s a joyful thing, it’s a moment of celebration,” says Sam Broekema, Editor-in-Chief of the Natural Diamond Council’s online platform Only Natural Diamonds. He embraces the trend towards more lavish, extravagant jewels – from pear-shaped gems à la Liz Taylor to brightly colored stones that add to the celebratory atmosphere.
“More people are getting engaged and getting married this year than last year,” Broekema continues. “There are so many people in this market, people want to stand out – what makes their ring different, what makes their wedding different, what makes their engagement moment different?”
As for “different,” look no further than the “twin flames” that rapper Machine Gun Kelly created for actress Megan Fox. The ring contains two large pear-shaped gemstones representing each of her birthstones – a diamond for him, an emerald for her – on a band of thorns. (It reportedly hurts to take off; “Love is pain,” MGK, 32, told Vogue.)
“It’s definitely an edgy style,” says Scott Udell, Vice President of London Jewelers. “It takes a certain woman to step out of the traditional diamond look. But we do a lot of two-stone diamond rings, and for the really unique, avant-garde type of woman, we get requests for a diamond and a sapphire or a diamond and a ruby — that kind of thing.”
However, Udell says even more traditional brides want to stand out, with more women opting for mixed metals (like platinum for the head and rose or yellow gold for the shoulders and thighs) or long stones like “To All the Oval Stone.” Boys” star Lana Condor is set off by smaller diamonds on the side.
“Oval cuts, emerald cuts, elongated cushion cuts, elongated radiant cuts are very, very trendy right now,” he notes. “Obviously some of them have become timeless, but we have a lot of women who say, ‘The longer the stone, the better.’ It just shows up better on the finger and looks bigger too.”
Or go for a classic cut in a brightly colored diamond, like Jennifer Lopez’s brilliant 8.5-carat greenstone, which her second fiancé, Ben Affleck, gave her last month.
“It’s the next big thing,” Broekema says of colored diamonds, whether they’re green, pink, blue or purple. “Because of their chemical composition and how they are made, they are extremely rare. When you discover the science behind it, you feel like you are part of a piece of history.”
He also adds: “If workwear has taught me one thing, it’s that people love color – it makes you happy.” And that’s what an engagement ring should do, after all.